MCAS Miramar micro-grid aids local community

7 Dec 2022 | Marine Corps Air Station Miramar

MARINE CORPS AIR STATION MIRAMAR, Calif. – Marine Corps Air Station Miramar used its innovative micro-grid to supply power to the local community during a statewide power shortage, Aug. 17.

The micro-grid provided power to approximately 3,000 homes in the local community, from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., upon the request of San Diego Gas and Electric, said Mick Wasco, the director of Utilities and Energy Management at MCAS Miramar.

SDG&E requested air station support a day prior as part of a flex alert from the California Independent System Operator, a non-profit organization that oversees the operation of California’s bulk electric power system.

A flex alert is issued by the California ISO when the electricity grid is under stress due to outages or persistent hot temperatures.

MCAS Miramar is permitted to generate power independently from the state power grid to offset the risk of rolling blackouts during times of power shortage, according to Wasco.

“First and foremost, we’re here to support the community as well as the installation – so, anything that we can do to help the state or the grid when it’s in flex to further support the community,” said Jaret Jahn-Good, an engineering technician operator for the micro-grid system on MCAS Miramar.

The micro-grid provides energy resiliency to the installation. The innovative system can provide power to the entire base and flight line for an extended time period, not just for critical equipment, but also for general operation of the installation.

The installation was able to support the community through the Miramar Summer Generation Incentive, an agreement among the California Public Utility Commission, SDG&E, MCAS Miramar, and Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command Southwest. The incentive began last summer as an innovative civil-military pilot program that sought to support the local community while also giving the installation energy independence for extended periods when necessary.

“We look forward to supporting the grid as much as we can as required, and with the upcoming heat wave worsening, the community can be assured we at MCAS Miramar will be doing all that we can to support,” said Wasco.

Marine Corps Air Station Miramar