Colorado State University

What is a Smart Village Minigrid?

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Providing Energy Access Where It Is Needed Most

Rwanda Solar Grid

While there are many definitions of microgrids (or minigrids), our area of focus is small rural areas distant from a national grid. For this reason, we define a Microgrid as a small-scale electrical system that operates completely independent of national-grid power sources and can be run on mainly nearby renewable sources such as solar photovoltaics, wind turbines, thermal, or hydro power. This energy system can not only reduce carbon emissions but also provide more power reliability and increased energy efficiency. 

The term Smart Village is based on the concept of Smart Cities that integrates energy, water, social services and transportation systems to produce better quality of life and lower environmental impact. A Smart Village can be even more impactful as village electrification can produce safer drinking water with less human effort, leading to improved health. This “freed up” human effort can contribute directly to economic growth, education, and overall life quality.

Energy Institute Member Organizations

Center for Energy and Behavior Center for Energy Development and Health Center for Energy Water Sustainability Center for Laser Sensing and Diagnostics Center for Next Generation Photovoltaics Center for the New Energy Economy Electric Power Systems Laboratory Engines and Energy Conversion Laboratory Industrial Assessment Center Institute for the Built Environment Rural Energy Center Sustainable Biofuels Development Center