Deadline
-
March 30, 2024
6:00 pm
ET

Interconnection Innovation e-Xchange Interconnection Queue Management Pilot Demonstration Program

Information

Description

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Interconnection Innovation e-Xchange (i2X) in collaboration with its newly established Partnership Intermediary Agreement (PIA), called ENERGYWERX, is looking to partner with distribution utilities to conduct pilot demonstrations of innovative interconnection queue management and optimization solutions.

This effort is specifically catered to electric distribution utilities seeking to interconnect clean energy projects (solar, distributed wind, storage) at the non-residential scale (>100kW-10MW). Activities may last up to 18 months with the best five performing pilots receiving up to $600,000 of federal funding to implement a suite of solutions on active projects in generator interconnection queues.

Objective

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Interconnection Innovation e-Xchange (i2X) program was launched in 2022 to enable simpler, faster, and fairer interconnection of clean energy resources to the distribution and transmission grids. After convening 22 virtual meetings with more than 2,000 stakeholders from across the U.S. electricity ecosystem, and funding 12 technical assistance projects with three national labs and more than six distribution utilities, the i2X team has prioritized, as a next step, the need to partner with distribution utilities to facilitate the rapid prototyping and demonstration of interconnection queue management optimization solutions.

ENERGYWERX in collaboration with the i2X team seeks applications from distribution utilities experiencing bottlenecks in their interconnection queues specifically related to wind, solar and storage projects at the non-residential scale (>100kW-10MW), willing to implement, via pilots, one of the interconnection optimization solutions identified by the i2X team. Examples of optimization solutions include:  

  • Automated interconnection studies 
  • Flexible interconnection strategies 
  • Locational clustering 
  • Advanced hosting capacity services and tools, such as hosting capacity maps equipped with point of interconnection cost data.
  • Other new capabilities proposed in the i2X distribution interconnection roadmap (to be released in Spring 2024).

Selected utility partners will be responsible for demonstrating their technical competence and ability to use the solutions of their choice to improve the speed and quality of interconnection modeling and optimize interconnection queues and management. The i2X team intends to collaborate with selected utilities in three phases. After each phase, we will select the best performing utilities to advance to the next phase, with the best performing five utilities advancing through all three phases to conduct pilot demonstrations using active projects in their interconnection queues. These phases and the level of funding per selected utilities are as follows:

  1. Ready (Phase 1- Preparedness – 6 months): At least 15 utilities, each awarded about $50,000 demonstrate that they have the capability to implement new queue management optimization software, and the ability to perform the work, e.g., the staff with the relevant expertise, etc.
  2. Set (Phase 2- Competence – 6 months): The 10 best performing utilities based on Phase 1 results will each be awarded about $150,000 to test their selected tools via analysis of previously proposed clean energy projects.
  3. Go (Phase 3- Pilots -12 months): The five best performing utilities based on Phase 2 results will each be awarded about $400,000 to pilot new capabilities using real time active interconnection mid-scale clean energy projects. The results of these pilots will be compiled and disseminated to the public via a final report and webinar.

Selected utilities will dedicate a staff member to meet regularly with the i2X team to provide project updates and to facilitate coordination as necessary. Selected utilities will also be responsible for getting regulatory approval, if necessary, to conduct pilots on active interconnection generation requests and participating in the program is contingent on having a pathway for doing so.

Event Updates

How to Participate

  1. Download the Capabilities Overview Template: Click Here to Download
  2. Attend the Informational Webinar/Objective Strategic Session on March 5, 2024 from 3:00-4:00 PM ET: Click Here to RSVP
  3. Attend the informational Office Hours session on March 12, 2024 from 2:00-4:00 PM ET: Click Here to RSVP
  4. Complete the Submission Form: Click Here to Submit (Submissions are due No Later Than March 30, 2024, 5:00 PM ET)

Important Dates

Opportunity Announcement

Objective Strategic Session

Informational Webinar/ ObjectiveStrategic Session (March 5, 2024): Join ENERGYWERX and the i2X team for an informational webinar on the Interconnection Innovation e-Xchange Interconnection Queue Management Pilot Demonstration Program. 3-4PM ET

Information "Office Hours" Session(s)

Office Hours (March 12, 2024): ENERGYWERX and the i2X team will host open office hours for potential applicants. Participants are encouraged to come prepared to ask questions. The session will take place on March 12, 2:00-4:00 PM ET.

Submission Deadline(s)

Submissions are due No Later Than March 30, 2024, 5:00 PM ET

Process Details

Timeline(s)

  • Submissions Open (February 20, 2024 to March 29, 2024): Interested utilities must complete a submission form (for government review only) no later than 3/30, 5pm ET. Submitters must download, complete, and upload a capabilities overview (maximum 2 pages). The list of criteria can be found on the capabilities overview template, found at the bottom of this webpage.
  • Informational Webinar/ ObjectiveStrategic Session (March 5, 2024): Join ENERGYWERX and the i2X team for an informational webinar on the Interconnection Innovation e-Xchange Interconnection Queue Management Pilot Demonstration Program. 3-4PM ET
  • Office Hours (March 12, 2024): ENERGYWERX and the i2X team will host open office hours for potential applicants. Participants are encouraged to come prepared to ask questions. The session will take place on March 12, 2:00-4:00 PM ET.
  • i2X Review and Down Select (April 1, 2024 - April 30, 2024): i2X will down select the respondent/submissions with the highest likelihood of satisfying project requirements. All respondents will receive a selection of non-selection notification on April 30, 2024.
  • Effort Underway (May 6, 2024)
  • Final Project Results Completed (December 1, 2025)

Resources from Webinar(s)

Coming soon.

Slide Deck(s)

Coming soon.

Transcript(s)

Coming soon.

Video Recording(s)

Coming soon.

Webinar Q&As

Coming soon.

Eligibility & Review Criteria

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs

Questions

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