Energy Resilient Recovery in Puerto Rico: Hurricane Maria Recovery Support

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


This report covers microgrids as a special application of distributed energy resources (DERs) in Puerto Rico. This is one of a series of reports describing the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) multi-laboratory efforts undertaken. To ensure the sustainable, long-term recovery of Puerto Rico's electric power grid from hurricanes Maria and Irma and to build capacity to manage future potential natural disasters in the most secure and resilient way, DOE convened experts from multiple national laboratories to develop a comprehensive set of data, models, analytic tools, and studies, considering inputs from a wide variety of stakeholder groups, to support technically sound recommendations for Puerto Rico's energy investment decisions. In Phase 1 of the multi-laboratory effort to support Puerto Rico's recovery, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) provided the utility company Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) recommendations for a new framework of interconnection standards to accelerate the integration of utility-scale, transmission-connected, renewable electrical generation and energy storage that ensure cross-technology compatibility and enable high deployment levels without compromising grid reliability, safety, or security ( In Phase 2, NREL published a report focused on the interconnection of distributed energy resources (DERs) to the electric distribution system in Puerto Rico ( This report familiarized the reader with Puerto Rico's distribution infrastructure and operational practices and procedures that are relevant to DER interconnection. The report also provided considerations for streamlining the interconnection process given the expected increase in deployments resulting from Puerto Rico's renewable portfolio standard goal of 100% renewables by 2050. Accordingly, the report identifies considerations and concerns associated with the increase in intermittent generation, strategies for DER interconnection best practices, and the potential use of the latest technological solutions identified in the latest revision of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers 1547-2018 interconnection standard. Additionally, the report identified ways to improve the physical resiliency of installed DERs. This task describes how distributed energy systems may participate in and contribute to improving the resiliency of Puerto Rico's energy infrastructure in the future. This report presents an analysis of the Puerto Rico grid to illustrate the possible different microgrid and minigrid scenarios. The capability to form sustained microgrids and minigrids has the potential to provide a high level of resiliency during disturbances on the grid. DERs, on the other hand, have the capability to aid in the microgrid operation by providing grid support as well as grid-forming functionality. Other tasks in Phase 3 include voltage regulation in distribution networks using DERs and transmission-and-distribution co-simulation.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages38
StatePublished - 2022

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-5D00-83671


  • energy resilient recovery
  • hurricane recovery
  • microgrid
  • minigrid
  • Puerto Rico


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