In partnership with a major California utility, researchers are modeling a microgrid for NAU that would include electricity generation, storage, and management systems to allow for ‘islanding’ from the electricity grid on a scale from building-level to campus-wide. The modeling of this microgrid will result in understanding the opportunities, costs and challenges of implementation.
Energy utilization encompasses all of NAU Energy Efficiency and Smart Grid research programs. NAU has capacity in the College of Business and the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences to perform qualitative research on the human dimensions of energy conservation and utilization behaviors.
Researchers are collaborating with NAU Facility Services and external utility and municipal partners to investigate the feasibility of establishing a microgrid at NAU. This type of theoretical research has application in urban and rural communities nationwide and is of interest to many leading utilities.
NAU has performed research on the potential for Energy Efficiency on Native American Lands as part of the Western Regional Air Partnership research that was published in 2006.
Acker T., Auberle, W., LaRoche, D. , Eastwood, J. , Ormond A., Slack R., Smith, D. H., (2006). "Recommendations for Reducing Energy Consumption and Improving Air Quality through Energy Efficiency On Native American Lands." Energy Sources, Part B (1), 223-234.