The OER System Reliability Procurement Solar DG Pilot Project

OER spearheaded a pilot to understand how renewable distributed generation—in particular, solar power—could potentially reduce the need for costly investments in utility infrastructure to meet growing energy demand.


Between 2014 and 2018, OER conducted a pilot to explore the ability of solar arrays to reduce peak electricity needs on the local electric distribution system and thereby provide cost savings by postponing the need for utility upgrades. The pilot included incentives for orienting solar systems westward to align peak generation more closely with late afternoon periods of maximum summer electricity consumption.

OER and National Grid initially commissioned a study by Peregrine Energy Group to develop the pilot concept and design. Subsequently, OER contracted with Cadmus to complete an evaluation report assessing the outcomes of the pilot. The results of the pilot showed that orienting solar arrays to the west successfully increased solar production during periods of high electricity demand on the local distribution system. However, despite these overall savings, maximum summer peaks still occurred late in the day relative to solar system output.