DOE, local governments join to help Hoboken fix hurricane-hit power grid

The Department of Energy will partner with the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, the city of Hoboken and Public Service Electric & Gas Co. (PSE&G) to help assess and develop strategies for improving the reliability and resiliency of the local electric grid in Hoboken.

The collaboration will help Hoboken in its efforts to rebuild and upgrade its electricity infrastructure by delivering a strategic design that identifies priority energy needs and energy system functions for various outage durations, evaluates potential system improvements and estimates cost. 

“With natural disasters causing major power outages and weather events projected to increase in intensity and frequency, rebuilding smarter is a wise investment and vital to improving the reliability and resiliency of critical infrastructure,” said Assistant Secretary for the DOE‘s Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability Patricia Hoffman. “Lessons learned from this pilot effort will be critical in helping Hoboken and other communities become more adaptive and better prepared to minimize the consequences of such events in the future.” 

Under the terms of the memorandum of understanding, the DOE will help the city of Hoboken and PSE&G implement the Energy Surety Design Methodology (ESDM). This will be the first non-military application of the ESDM for an entire community. Developed at Sandia National Laboratories, the ESDM is a quantitative risk-based assessment tool that allows communities to evaluate their regional energy needs, identify advanced solutions to improve the reliability and resiliency of their electric grids, and understand the most cost-effective strategies for system upgrades.

At the core of this methodology is the use of advanced smart grid technologies and the integration of distributed energy resources such as backup generators, photovoltaics and energy storage. Previous applications of the ESDM have shown enhanced reliability and resiliency, improved integration of renewable and distributed energy and cost-effectiveness.

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