Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Toronto University to use microgrid for EV charging research

Steve Rogerson
February 5, 2019
 
Australian professional services firm WorleyParsons is set to install an entirely DC smart microgrid at the University of Toronto to reduce energy costs and aid in research into electric vehicle charging.
 
Installed in collaboration with Ontario-based Arda Power, the project will see the microgrid installed at the university to provide power resiliency and reduced electricity costs.
 
“This project is the first of its kind in the university research setting and is attributable to the vision of the University of Toronto and the unique microgrid technology provided for the project by Arda Power,” said Michael Cantin, vice president of operations, WorleyParsons. “For WorleyParsons, this contract adds to our list of projects in the renewable energy space which are helping our customers to meet the world’s changing resource and energy needs.”
 
The microgrid will couple energy supplied by the grid and rooftop solar power with a lithium-ion battery and DC loads. The university laboratory will use the microgrid to develop and test energy management software for various approaches to electric vehicle charging.
 
“We are pleased to further our collaboration with WorleyParsons on this unique DC microgrid project and look forward to delivering a system to the University of Toronto that will help further their research into cutting edge electric vehicle charging technology,” said Aleksey Toporkov, president of Arda Power.
 
The engineering and procurement phases are underway, and the construction phase is set to begin in July 2019, with project completion expected by the end of December 2019.
 
The WorleyParsons project team will include highly subject matter experts, including director of smart and distributed energy, Tristan Jackson, and director of engineering, Hariharan Viswanathan.
 
“DC microgrid technology holds great promise for simplifying microgrid design and the related interconnection process, and for improving efficiency by eliminating redundant AC-DC conversions,” said Jackson. “The direct current approach to microgrids can save significant costs on equipment, installation, interconnection to the grid and operations. We anticipate many more such projects in the near future. Two areas where we see the greatest potential for these systems to bring disruptive value are electric vehicle charging and indoor agriculture.”