Distributed Generation for Remote Communities

Over 150 remote Canadian communities currently rely on aging, polluting, diesel generators operating near their maximum capacity and approaching the end of their life expectancy. This reliance threatens the energy security and environmental health of remote communities and curtails future infrastructure and industry growth as a result of insufficient and inefficient energy supply.

The primary focus of recent research on clean energy technologies, such as wind turbines, solar photovoltaics, and electrochemical energy conversion, has been to develop these technologies for use on an energy grid, through which excess electricity is sold to other users on the network. A major unaddressed challenge is to develop clean energy technologies that can function off an electrical grid as distributed generation. In a remote setting, clean energy technologies must be integrated into a system where dynamic operation will take place under extreme weather conditions, and access to natural resources must be taken into consideration.

The NSERC CREATE Program in Distributed Generation for Remote Communities (DGRC) is the first program in Canada to train personnel to integrate clean energy technologies into distributed generation systems that work in the remote settings of Canada. Through partnerships with community, institutional, and industry stakeholders, we will provide trainees with a diverse research and training program that is internationally unique and launch them into successful careers in the energy sector.

Funding provided by NSERC