Tesla’s Microgrid Controller autonomously maintains grid stability while reducing operating costs across all energy-generating sources within a microgrid. Fully integrated with Powerhub, Microgrid Controller provides real-time control of paralleled grid-forming sources and variable renewable generation, as well as intelligent load and solar forecasting. Microgrid Controller optimises sites and systems that operate entirely or partially off-grid, supporting storage, load, solar, other generators and islanding control.
Microgrid Controller optimises performance and economics through least-cost dispatch of assets and offers site-specific solutions with features such as configurable quiet hours and low-state-of-energy load shedding. To ensure seamless integration of microgrid assets, Tesla maintains a pre-approved list of third-party solar inverters and generator controllers that are compatible with Microgrid Controller. Microgrid Controller runs natively in the Tesla Site Controller as an option for Autonomous Control, Tesla’s suite of software solutions.
Microgrid Controller operates autonomously with Tesla energy storage systems to support various types of microgrids. When actively running, Microgrid Controller enables clean, renewable energy consumption without compromising grid stability. When backup assets are needed, or additional spinning reserve is required, Microgrid Controller activates generators that operate at the greatest available efficiency to reduce fossil fuel consumption, and then stops generators once they are no longer needed.
For off-grid microgrids, Microgrid Controller coordinates the battery energy storage system, solar and other generation assets. In this configuration, a backup grid connection is not available — to ensure that energy demand matches production, Microgrid Controller operates all storage and generation assets in parallel as needed.
Grid-tied microgrids operate all storage and generation assets in parallel as needed, similar to off-grid microgrids. Grid-tied microgrids may include backup-only microgrids, which use a battery energy storage system to power loads, but do not use any other generation assets, such as solar — in this case, Microgrid Controller is not required. When a grid connection is available, the battery energy storage system and solar assets work together. For both grid-tied microgrids and backup-only microgrids, where a utility grid connection is available, the Tesla Site Controller communicates with a dedicated Islanding Controller to switch between on-grid and off-grid modes of operation.
With a growing list of features, Microgrid Controller has the functionality to:
Curtail excess solar generation when the loads or battery system are unable to absorb power.
- Start and stop generators as needed when the battery system reaches a low state of energy or additional power is required to meet loads.
- Share power using a droop-based scheme that prioritises direct active control of all assets while providing a passive fallback in the event of infrastructure failures.
- Manage spinning reserve by maintaining upwards and downwards reserves of power according to the maximum expected load steps and instantaneous renewables generation.
- Maintain nominal frequency of the microgrid through open-loop frequency control.
- Shed pre-defined load groups at specific state of energy levels to increase renewable energy usage and reduce generator activation.
Based on Opticaster, Tesla’s forecasting and optimisation engine, Microgrid Opticaster can be enabled with Microgrid Controller to provide advanced features such as:
- Optimised dispatch to reduce energy costs by using day-ahead load and solar forecasts together with generator efficiency curves.
- Flexible quiet hours to ensure that the battery system is pre-charged and generators are turned off during designated time periods.
Learn More About Microgrid Controller
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