Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

MRSI Umbrella Logo
Welcome to MRSI

Dedicated to improving Military Construction throughout the Army


MSC Program Manager:Ryan Parks
MSC Technical Lead / Co-Chair:Antonino Marzullo and Marc Allen
HQ USACE Proponent:Bruce Movahedi and David Williams
ERDC Liaison:Harold Sanborn

About Microgrid

The mission of the Microgrid Center of Expertise in Sustainability (CXS) is to support USACE in understanding and executing microgrids. The goal of this effort is to bring together various components of USACE and DOD with expertise in energy generation, distribution, and grid security to produce implementation doctrine that can be used by all USACE Districts and other Army and DoD activities.

The Microgrid CXS can also facilitate the conceptualization of microgrid site layout, identify critical loads and the equipment and conditions necessary for a microgrid. As the DoD strives towards “Net Zero,” microgrids can include smart controls to manage demand and reduced fuel usage as well as manage distributed renewable energy generation.

WHAT IS A MICROGRID? Multiple definitions exist:

Department of Energy: "A microgrid is a group of interconnected loads and distributed energy resources within clearly defined electrical boundaries that act as a single controllable entity with the grid. A microgrid can connect and disconnect from the grid to enable it to operate in both grid‐connected and island‐mode." Department of Defense (DoD): "A DoD installation microgrid is an integrated energy system consisting of interconnected loads and energy resources which, as an integrated system, can island from the local utility grid and function as a stand‐alone system." Essentially a microgrid provides energy security and independence from the utility grid when outages occur. Smart Grid systems can incorporate photovoltaics, fuel cells, batteries and natural gas generation as well as your back up generator. It can be coupled to larger electric grid (utility), but is capable of running entirely independently of it. It could be anything from a single building to an island or isolated village of substantial size. Renewable energy systems can operate as a generating resource within a microgrid during a power outage. Microgrids allow an installation or subset of an installation to operate as an isolated power grid when commercial power is unavailable. Microgrid systems are complex, dynamic power systems that require careful planning, design and controls strategy for successful implementation.


Research & Services


i. JCTD SPIDERS. ERDC-CERL researchers are providing technical management of the FY 2011 Joint Capability Technology Demonstration (JCTD) Smart Power Infrastructure Demonstration for Energy Reliability and Security (SPIDERS) Program. The three-year JCTD SPIDERS program will deploy microgrid technology to Joint Base Pearl-Hickam, Fort Carson, and Camp Smith. The deployed microgrids will ensure critical missions have a reliable and secure electric power supply. The project will address the advanced controls needed for utility-connected and islanded modes of operation, cyber security risk mitigation, and transition of microgrid technology to standards

ii. Tactical Mobile and Stationary Microgrid Development Initiatives-Research and Development Engineering Command (RDECOM) has an ongoing project at the Selfridge Air National Guard facility in Warren, MI, to develop what is being called a mobile microgrid, where various distributed generation and energy storage technologies, including fuel cells, are networked together with the loads that they serve in a “plug and play” configuration. This “intelligent” microgrid will serve airstrip lighting loads for the Selfridge project and will be designed so that it is readily deployable to forward combat airstrip facilities. Applicable to the mission of the Corps of Engineers 249th Engineer Battalion, or Prime Power, who similarly provide large power systems to forward base camps and to Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) disaster relief efforts.


Articles & Case Studies2
Best Practices1
Design Tools1
Policy & Guidance1