TimberRock Announces Distributed Microgrid Deployment In Maryland

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TimberRock Energy Solutions today announced it is deploying a fleet of distributed microgrids across Maryland. The microgrid fleet will include multiple, geographically-separated buildings that integrate building automation, solar PV, li-ion battery storage, natural gas generators and a microgrid energy router to fully power the buildings during a grid failure. Sophisticated cloud computing technology will aggregate the individual building-level microgrids so they can be managed as a single, virtual power plant. Demand-side and supply-side resources within the microgrid fleet will be dispatched dynamically to achieve resiliency and sustainability for the host-site while delivering ancillary services and reducing congestion for the grid.

“We believe this will be one of the most ambitious and complex microgrid deployments in the U.S. due to its distributed nature,” said CEO Brent Hollenbeck. “It represents a major technical expansion of our award-winning microgrid management platform – called DE-MAP – while also demonstrating a scalable business model for microgrid development. It addresses issues of grid congestion, protection against dynamic grid outages and how to manage high-penetrations of renewable energy on the grid.”

The deployment will be funded in part by a grant from the Maryland Energy Administration. "The Maryland Energy Administration proudly supports the TimberRock microgrid project as a cutting-edge solution that provides reliable and affordable power," said MEA Director, A. Leigh Williams, Esq. "This type of project demonstrates the thoughtful and strategic partnerships the administration is making with the private sector while creating lower cost solutions for all Marylanders." The balance of funding will come from the individual building owners for whom the resiliency provided by the building-level microgrid is expected to lower insurance costs and increase profitability through continuity of operations.

“DE-MAP’s Internet of Things (IoT) hardware provides utility-grade connectivity, telemetry and advanced switching to each microgrid - all behind the meter,” said TimberRock CTO David Bateman. “Cyber-secure, cloud computing then allows the microgrids to be virtually aggregated and managed. The franchise rights of the utility are maintained and the utility continues to deliver off-site renewable energy. We believe this strategy represents a realistic and utility-friendly microgrid model that can eventually benefit all rate payers.”

This deployment represents the latest in a series of microgrid projects that TimberRock has deployed in the mid-Atlantic. Last year, TimberRock and General Motors were awarded PV America’s Project of Distinction for a microgrid deployment that integrated solar PV, energy storage and a fleet of Chevrolet Volts that provided ancillary services. It was the first real-world project to leverage OnStar’s smartgrid APIs to integrate EVs into a microgrid to provide grid services.

About TimberRock Energy Solutions

TimberRock is a leading energy services provider whose DE-MAP platform provides a robust Distributed Energy Resource (DER) & microgrid management platform for DER owner/operators. DE-MAP increases the economic performance of DERs by Straddling the Meter TM to reduce cost and increase resiliency for the host site while also delivering grid services. DE-MAP’s proprietary hardware provides IoT connectivity, utility-grade telemetry and robust cyber-security for DERs while maximizing their functionality and microgrid capabilities. A standards-based, cloud-computing platform then aggregates the DERs into fleets providing low latency, high-throughput data which enables real-time dispatch and delivery of services.

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Sean Paprocki
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