Research Projects

Airport Microgrid Solution Standard Framework

Development of a microgrid standard framework (Technical, Financial, Regulatory, Permitting) solution which can apply to all airports across the country. Due to the complexity of the airports' operation and numbers of stakeholders and decision-makers, this comprehensive solution has not been developed.

Background (Describe the current situation or problem in the industry, and how your idea would address it.)

At this point, there is not any comprehensive and standard framework which addresses all the aspects (Technical, Financial, Regulatory, Permitting) of microgrid system development at the airport. ACRP Synthesis S01-16 and ACRP Synthesis S17-01-16 talked about the need of the microgrid at the airports. ACRP 10-26, microgrid evaluation toolkit for airport decision makers and stakeholders. However, none, of these project does not address the development process, funding resources, technical barriers and solution to them, and a path turn the microgrid into reality considering all the airport planning and operation characteristics.

Objective (What is the desired product or result that will help the airport industry?)

A comprehensive guideline which depicts when, how the microgrid project can be developed, designed, constructed, and be operated. What metrics should be developed to be considered for the Measurement and Verification (M&V) task, and how this measured can be included in the FAA regulation for airport design and improvement projects consideration.

Approach (Describe in general terms the steps you think are needed to achieve the objective.)

Below is the list of the tasks that our team will be performing to assure the effectiveness of our approach:

  1. Technical literature review: review the report of all TRB related projects (ACRPs), IEEE standards (IEEE2030.8, IEEE2030.7, and IEEE1547), and FAA related regulations for all the microgrid assets including energy resources, communications, control mechanism, financial frameworks and permitting requirements) such as "FAA Technical Guidance for Solar Technologies on Airports".
  2. Develop technical approach (Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) optimal mix development, Distribution network, communication, and control system configuration)
  3. Develop a financial model and financing mechanism
  4. Validate the solution at step 2 and three according to regulation applicable and enforced at airports
  5. Develop the permitting requirements list and plan for construction
  6. Develop Ownership and Operating framework
  7. Apply the developed solution at the targeted airports to demonstrate the solution
  8. Pursue other Federal, State, and local government funding opportunity to receive additional funding to design, build, construct, and operate a pilot project using the proposed solution.
  9. Share the result with airports decision makers, operators and industries for replication through technical paper publications, conferences (ACI, and AEEE)
Cost Estimate and Backup (Provide a cost estimate and support for how you arrived at the estimate.)

To accomplish this project, we apply for $600K. In order to accomplish this project, we need to collaborate with industries (RMI, Willdan,hmmh) and national labs (LBNL, NREL), and the airport personnel.

Related Research - List related ACRP and other industry research; describe gaps (see link to Research Roadmaps above), and describe how your idea would address these gaps. This is a critical element of a synthesis topic submission.

ACRP Synthesis S01-16
ACRP Synthesis S17-01-16
ACRP 160 and 170
Synthesis 82,83,72
IEEE 2030 and 1547, CA DERs and Microgrid roadmap
FAA FAA Technical Guidance for Solar Technologies on Airports

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Idea No. 214