The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) hosted the second Reimagining Interconnection for Solar Energy (RISE) workshop on June 10, 2021, from 12 – 5 p.m. ET. This workshop convened non-utility stakeholders in the transmission and distribution space to discuss innovative ways to achieve faster, fairer, and more equitable interconnection while enhancing grid reliability with the addition of solar and solar+ resources such as solar+storage and solar+wind.

This workshop connected SETO staff with participants who are developing, building, and supporting large-scale, community-scale, and residential solar and solar+ resources to brainstorm and provide feedback. It included roundtables and Q&A sessions with developers, off-takers, designers, and solution providers to discuss the state-of-the-art and future landscape of solar and solar+ interconnection.

Participants were from the following sectors that deal with interconnection:

  • Solar and Solar+ Developers (Transmission-, Community-, and Residential-scale)
  • Solution Providers in Software, Distributed Energy Resource Management Systems (DERMS), and Data Analytics
  • Engineering, Procurement, and Construction Firms
  • Community Solar and Solar+ Off-takers
  • Commercial and Industrial Off-takers
  • Financing and Insurance Sectors
  • Independent Power Producers
  • Regulators
  • Other Non-utility Stakeholders (specify in registration)

This workshop was the second in the RISE series. The first workshop focused on utility stakeholder perspectives on solar interconnection.

Presentations and key takeaways from this workshop will be added to this page soon. 

Workshop Agenda: June 10, 2021

Time (ET)

Session

Presenters

12:0012:30 p.m.

Introductions and Overview

  • Workshop agenda and goals
  • Welcome and SETO mission overview
  • Meeting technology walkthrough

Ruchi Singh | SETO Technology Manager

Becca Jones-Albertus | SETO Director

12:301:15 p.m.

Keynote Speech: Why is Holistic Interconnection Focusing on Both Transmission and Distribution the Path Forward?

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Alan McBride | ISO New England

1:152:00 p.m.

Interactive Breakout Session

This session will focus on viewing the interconnection process through the lens of both transmission and distribution. Groups will be divided by functional areas to discuss the interconnection process: what are the barriers, what tools are needed, and how can SETO help?

SETO Moderators

2:002:15 p.m. Break  
     
  TRANSMISSION SESSIONS:  
2:15–3:15 p.m.

Panel 1: Reimagining Transmission Interconnection

Moderators: Ruchi Singh (SETO) and Cynthia Bothwell (DOE Wind Energy Technologies Office)

Panelists will discuss what a high renewable solar and solar+ world will look like from a transmission interconnection standpoint, their perspective on interconnection challenges, and what utilities, independent system operators/regional transmission organizations, regulators, and DOE/SETO can do to prepare in a virtual Q&A round table format.

Matt Pawlowski NextEra Energy

Patrick Tan | 8minute Energy

Mark Freyman | Smart Wires Inc.

Andrew Isaacs | Electranix

Sana Ouji | Google

Adrian Anderson | Microsoft

3:15–3:30 p.m. Break  

3:30–4:30 p.m.

Interactive Breakout Session

Groups will be divided by functional areas to discuss the vision laid out by our panelists, innovations that will be necessary to achieve that vision, and how to prepare for high renewable penetration in transmission interconnection.

SETO Moderators
     
  DISTRIBUTION SESSIONS:  
2:15–3:15 p.m.

Panel 2: Reimagining Distribution Interconnection

Moderators: Matt Tisdale (Grid Works) and Jeremiah Miller (SETO)

Panelists will discuss what a high renewable solar and solar+ world will look like from a distribution interconnection standpoint, their perspective on interconnection challenges, and what utilities, independent system operators/regional transmission organizations, regulators, and DOE/SETO can do to prepare in a virtual Q&A round table format.

Kathryn Cox-Arslan Borrego Solar

Graham Ault | Smart Grid Solutions

Aram Shumavon | Kevala Analytics

Bradford Boston | Suncatch Energy

Christopher Sabin | GenRenew

3:15–3:30 p.m. Break  
3:30–4:30 p.m.

Interactive Breakout Session

Groups will be divided by functional areas to discuss the vision laid out by our panelists, innovations that will be necessary to achieve that vision, and how to prepare for high renewable penetration in distribution interconnection.

SETO Moderators

     
4:30–5:00 p.m. Closing Remarks and Path Forward