The IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA) Standards Board has approved the IEEE 1547.4 Guide for Design, Operation and Integration of Distributed Resource Island Systems with Electric Power Systems.

IEEE 1547.4 provides alternative approaches and best practices for designing, operating and integrating distributed resource (DR) island systems with electric power systems. There are several types of DR island systems, but they all share the ability to generate their own electric power as well as the ability to connect and disconnect from the electric power system that serves a wider geographic area. Customer facility micro-grids and electric utility distribution circuit micro-grids are two instances of planned DR islands. DRs include both generators and energy-storage technologies.

The IEEE 1547.4 guide includes best practices for implementing the various ways in which a DR island can separate from a part of the area electric power system and can reconnect to it while providing power to the islanded local electric power systems. The guide also expands on the benefits of using DRs by targeting improved electric power system reliability and builds upon the interconnection requirements of the IEEE 1547 Standard for Interconnecting Distributed Resources with Electric Power Systems. Additionally, it provides informative background and covers DRs, interconnection systems and participating electric power systems. The guide includes sections on electric loads, utility equipment and operations, protection, controls and system studies. Testing, communications, and contractual and regulatory considerations are additionally cited.

The guide is organized into three major categories:

  • Overview covers types of DR islands and the general functionality of each type.

  • Planning and Engineering covers the planning and testing of appropriate engineering approaches to encompass a variety of contingencies.

  • Operations covers how a DR island is formed, the operational transition scenarios when moving to the island as well as scenarios when transitioning back to the utility grid.

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