Bad River Tribe Leads State on Solar Plus Storage Microgrids

The Bad River Band of Lake Superior Indians is completing a substantial solar + storage project that was funded with a $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy.  This 524kW solar photovoltaic (PV) project is coupled with more than 1 mega-watt-hours of battery storage in three separate microgrids. Collectively,  this is the most battery storage of any installation in Wisconsin.

The independent microgrids are associated with the tribe’s Health and Wellness Center (300kW of PV), the Waste Water Treatment Plant (200kW) and the Chief Blackbird Administration Building (24kW), all critical infrastructure sites.  Each is grid tied but capable of operating independent of the grid in case of grid outage, which was a key goal of the project given they had experienced grid outage for extended time in the past.  The solar PV installations are integrated with battery storage and diesel backup generation which seamlessly and automatically optimize the dispatch of energy for economic as well as resiliency goals.

EnTech Solutions, a division of Faith Technologies based in Neenah, WI is the contractor.  Cheq Bay Renewables formed a consulting team with Madison Solar Consulting and muGrid Analytics of Golden, CO to assist the tribe in project development and implementation.  The virtual ribbon cutting will be May 14.

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