Enphase Energy, Hawaiian Electric collaborate to improve stability of the grid

Enphase Energy successfully upgraded the operating behavior of about 800,000 of its smart microinverters installed in Hawaii, better integrating the photovoltaic systems into Hawaii’s changing island grids.

This is a result of ongoing collaboration between Enphase, Hawaiian Electric and other industry partners to find technical solutions for integrating high levels of PV in Hawaii at a low cost to end-customers.

With the highest level of solar power penetration in the country, Hawaii poses a unique challenge. Over 51,000 customers—12 percent of all residential customers—have rooftop solar. More than 60 percent of these systems are equipped with Enphase microinverter systems.

Hawaiian Electric and Enphase have been working closely with other industry partners to determine new frequency and voltage ride-through settings that would allow rooftop solar installations to be more tolerant when a problem occurs on the grid, which in turn helps improve the stability of the overall grid.

Because Enphase’s microinverters are software-defined, Enphase was able to make these updates remotely and quickly, saving tens of millions of dollars by avoiding the need to send personnel out in the field to update the settings manually.

Hawaiian Electric and its subsidiaries, Maui Electric and Hawaii Electric Light, serve the islands of O‘ahu, Maui, Lānaʻi, Moloka'i and Hawai‘i, home to 95 percent of the population of Hawai‘i.

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