HOMER Energy, developer of the industry-leading HOMER® Pro software for modeling hybrid renewable energy systems, and the global leader in microgrid decision analysis and design optimization, is preparing to hold its Fifth Annual International Microgrid Conference at the Embassy Suites in downtown Denver, Colorado, September 18-21, 2017.
The HOMER International Microgrid Conference is the only event of its kind focused on bringing together global leaders and influencers in the microgrid community. Both an educational and networking event, the conference allows attendees to connect with others in their industry to discuss projects and collaborative opportunities. 2017 presentation topics include The Current Microgrid Market State, Microgrid Finance, and Grid Connected Case Studies. The third day offers an optional training in the HOMER software, and the fourth day includes optional tours of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, a tour of the nation’s largest public-private outdoor solar testing and demonstration facility at SolarTAC, and a look inside a leading-edge effort to bring clean energy to existing commercial buildings with a visit to the Alliance for Sustainable Colorado’s LEED Platinum building, the Alliance Center.
“Our conference is special because of its strong international attendance, and because it brings together both the financial and technical aspects of microgrids,” says HOMER CEO and co-founder Dr. Peter Lilienthal. “For this year’s event, we are looking forward to offering even more training for users of HOMER Pro, and are happy to be bringing it home to our own state. Holding the event in Colorado is an opportunity for the state to showcase its leadership in renewable energy.”
Renewable energy has become an important part of Colorado’s economy. In 2016, Colorado ranked fourth out of the 50 states in cleantech employment concentration, which includes companies that produce and conserve energy using wind, solar, biomass, fuel cells, hydroelectric resources, and green transportation technologies, as well as companies that manufacture renewable energy equipment, storage, and power transformers, and businesses that provide engineering and other support services are also included. In 2016, Colorado ranked ninth in the nation for total installed solar capacity and 10th for installed wind generation capacity.
A software startup located in Boulder, HOMER Energy has grown to be on the forefront of the rapidly developing microgrid market. Their HOMER software, originally developed at NREL, helps customers determine the most cost-effective configurations for hybrid, distributed power systems that can combine “traditional” power sources (the power grid or diesel generators) with renewable sources and storage. Microgrids are localized power systems that can run independently from the larger power grid. Energy access – electricity for areas that have had none – was one of the first applications for microgrids, but they are now gaining attention for their ability to provide sustainable power during disasters, or to allow a much higher degree of renewable energy onto the power grid.
The 2017 conference has attracted large industry leaders, including ABB, General Electric, Caterpillar, Cummins, S&C Electric, and SAFT, as well as Colorado-based companies such as Ft. Collins-based Spirae, a leader in innovative control technologies for distributed electricity generation.
Alaskan Senator Lisa Murkowski will introduce a panel on remote Alaskan microgrids via remote video link. Senator Murkowski co-authored the widely supported bipartisan Energy and Natural Resources Act in July, which seeks to modernize the nation’s energy policies. The bill specifically recognizes the importance of microgrids in the nation’s future energy infrastructure.
Other keynote speakers include Bob Stojanovic, Director of Microgrids in North America for ABB, Karl Rabago, Executive Director of the Pace Energy and Climate Center at the Pace University School of Law in White Plains, and Cathy Zoi, former CEO of Sun Edison’s Frontier Power and co-founder and President of Odyssey Energy Solutions, a new business helping to bring distributed, renewable electricity to communities and businesses in emerging economies. HOMER Energy CEO and Co-Founder Dr. Peter Lilienthal, Ph.D., will address participants on Microgrid Lessons from the Global Market.
Attendees and speakers from more than 30 countries have attended previous HOMER International Microgrid Conferences, sharing their experiences with implementing microgrids in developed and developing countries, remote and grid-connected systems, and applications with different reliability and resilience requirements. “I enjoyed the spirit of the HOMER conference where participants can openly share and discuss their experiences of developing, building, and operating microgrids” says Juergen Zimmermann, ABB Australia’s Technology and Business Development Manager for Microgrids. “It’s more than just another commercially organised event.”
News item from Homer Energy