Is a Microgrid an Option for Your Healthcare Facility?
Backup power in a healthcare facility isn’t just a luxury; it is a necessity. Not only do patient’s lives depend on it, but regulators require it. Microgrids can help reduce the impact of power outages and disruptions. They can also provide a source of revenue that can help offset the cost of operating the system. Most importantly, they can provide an added layer of protection to ensure that critical systems provide the lifesaving support patients require.
Microgrids Provide Stability in an Emergency
Hospitals are front page news right now. By and large, the general public is concerned about the availability of beds and hospitals reaching capacity. While administrators are concerned about this too, they are equally worried about having enough power to run the respirators, scanning machines, laboratory equipment, and other systems their patients depend upon. Even in normal times, hospitals consume roughly twice the amount of power required by a similarly sized office building. When demand for respirators and other power-intensive equipment increases, so does the amount of power that regional power companies are required to supply.
Microgrids can function as both primary and backup power sources. They provide significant protection against brownouts and blackouts, and any surges in demand that a public health crisis may cause. This is equally as important in rural healthcare facilities as it is in urban population centers. Installing a microgrid transforms the hospital into a self-sufficient island with an internal power source that can be scaled up as demand grows, and scaled back as it recedes.
Microgrids Can Generate Revenue
While hospitals need power 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, there will be times when demand drops off. When this happens, health care facilities can recoup some of their operational costs by participating in energy management programs. By participating in demand response, peak shaving, and load management programs, healthcare facilities can generate revenue and ensure a ready supply of power available to support their community and ease demand on regional power suppliers. Microgrids can also supply ancillary service to the regional grid. Thus, when wind and solar farms aren’t able to produce enough energy, a healthcare provider’s grid can supply power when the energy company can’t.
Do Microgrids Replace Backup Generators?
Microgrids should not be viewed as a replacement for a backup generator. Rather, they are another layer of protection. Combined, these systems work together to support the hospital’s lifesaving mission. Coupling diesel generators with CHP systems, wind turbines, solar panels, etc. provides comprehensive protection against practically every threat to the energy supply. As such, it is more like an insurance policy on top of an insurance policy.
Contact Gen-Tech Power Generation Specialists at (800) 625-8324 for more information about the power generation services we offer for health facilities and healthcare providers. We will help you identify the best, most effective solutions for your needs.