With the US Defense Department (DoD) the largest single global consumer of petroleum products and its military operations comprising the largest demand for all forms of energy, the DoD is already working on establishing a network of independent microgrids that integrate distributed renewable generation, electric vehicles, and demand response at its bases. As a result, the growth potential for the military microgrid market is anticipated to see upwards of 54.8 MW total capacity by 2018, according to new analysis from Red Mountain Insights.

Bases located within the US and abroad depend on aging transmission systems susceptible to cyber-terrorism and unreliability while the DoD moves about 50 million gallons of fuel monthly in Afghanistan, much of which is for power generation. The fuel powers more than 15,000 generators in Afghanistan alone, where the DoD also has 600 forward operating bases (FOBs) and is investigating the deployment of mobile microgrids.

Indeed, according to the Secretary of Defense, more than 40 US military bases either have operating microgrids, planned microgrids, or have conducted studies of microgrid technologies.

Military microgrids are expected to improve the energy efficiency and accelerate the integration of various renewable energy resources.