New York Solar Smart DG Hub-Resilient Solar Project: Economic and Resiliency Impact of PV and Storage on New York Critical Infrastructure

Katherine Anderson, Erica Helson, Lars Lisell, Tria Case, Kari Burman, Travis Simpkins

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


Resilient PV, which is solar paired with storage ('solar-plus-storage'), provides value both during normal grid operation and power outages as opposed to traditional solar PV, which functions only when the electric grid is operating. During normal grid operations, resilient PV systems help host sites generate revenue and/or reduce electricity bill charges. During grid outages, resilient PV provides critical emergency power that can help people in need and ease demand on emergency fuel supplies. The combination of grid interruptions during recent storms, the proliferation of solar PV, and the growing deployment of battery storage technologies has generated significant interest in using these assets for both economic and resiliency benefits. This report analyzes the technical and economic viability for resilient PV on three critical infrastructure sites in New York City (NYC): a school that is part of a coastal storm shelter system, a fire station, and a NYCHA senior center that serves as a cooling center during heat emergencies. This analysis differs from previous solar-plus-storage studies by placing a monetary value on resiliency and thus, in essence, modeling a new revenue stream for the avoided cost of a power outage. Analysis results show that resilient PV is economically viable for NYC's critical infrastructure and that it may be similarly beneficial to other commercial buildings across the city. This report will help city building owners, managers, and policymakers better understand the economic and resiliency benefits of resilient PV. As NYC fortifies its building stock against future storms of increasing severity, resilient PV can play an important role in disaster response and recovery while also supporting city greenhouse gas emission reduction targets and relieving stress to the electric grid from growing power demands.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages91
StatePublished - 2016

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-7A40-66617


  • New York City
  • REopt
  • resiliency
  • resilient PV
  • solar plus storage


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