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PG&E Launches Distributed Energy Resource Projects With GE, SolarCity, & Enphase Energy

PG&E, one of the largest natural gas and electric utilities in the US, has announced three partnerships to test distributed energy resource technologies.

PG&E is teaming up with GE to demonstrate a distributed energy resource management system, with Enphase Energy to install and test smart inverters, and SolarCity to install and test smart inverters and battery storage systems for residential solar systems.

“The rapid growth of distributed energy resources has ushered in a new era of electric distribution, and we’re seeing the smarter grid emerging as a reliability, storage and interconnection system that compliments the new energy technologies that our customers are using in their homes,” said Geisha Williams, president, PG&E Electric. “As this dynamic, two-way operating environment develops, PG&E continues to embrace and test innovative technologies that improve electric reliability and equip our customers with valuable services and products that support their choices to adopt clean energy.”

American solar provider SolarCity has partnered with PG&E to demonstrate to consumers the benefits of solar smart inverters and behind-the-meter energy storage.

Hot on the heels of the company’s most recent expansion announcement into Utah, SolarCity has revealed its involvement with PG&E on the plan to demonstrate “how the coordinated use of solar smart inverters and behind the meter energy storage could provide enhanced benefits to the grid.” The plan will see PG&E and SolarCity team up to install smart inverters and battery storage systems for residents with installed rooftop solar systems.

According to SolarCity, the demonstrations are intended to enable PG&E to evaluate if it “can enhance the stability and power quality of the grid and optimize solar generation and power-flow management through the coordinated use of distributed energy resources like solar with smart inverters and battery storage.”

The SolarCity partnership will lead into PG&E’s partnership with GE’s Grid Solutions business, which will develop a new distributed energy resource management (DERM) system. Enphase Energy will provide the solar smart inverters for the project, while SolarCity will provide smart inverters and residential battery storage systems.

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