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EEM (), 2011 (), p., -.,, 2011


Highly Integrated Community Energy Systems (ICES) greatly, but not solely, reliant on combined heat and power sources are a viable approach for dealing effectively with the new set of global problems which mankind is facing, such as Climate Change, Global Warming and Extreme Poverty. Current key technology for ICES are microgrids, capable of delivering sustainable electricity, heat and cold to small communities and of working in grid-connected or islanded mode, thus adding technical, economic, environmental and social benefits to the applied population environment. Due to the abovementioned reasons, one of the current leading topics on microgrid studies is the appropriate optimization modeling for the vital purposes of designing and analyzing these systems. Additionally the consideration of full broad spectrum of Sustainability is one of the challenges in microgrid planning. An overview of the current work in Portugal and in the USA on the sustainability-sound technology choice and operation planning of integrated community-scale microgrids is done in this paper. Case-study in the Azores Archipelago is on the extent of a research project of the MIT Portugal Program, within the Green Islands flagship Project framework. Topics explored comprise objective function algorithm description, structure of the economic-environmental optimization model, case-study inputs description namely, technology database, data collection and analysis and economic environment, model general functioning explanation, scenario evaluation, interactions with battery storage and results analysis for assessment of economic and environmental cost considerations of microgrid introduction in the case-study project.

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