California Transportation Authority Proposes Bus Charging Microgrid

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The Santa Clara, California, Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) plans to build a microgrid with charging infrastructure to upgrade and fuel its fleet of battery-powered electric buses with a potential $4.68 million in grant money from the California Energy Commission (CEC). 


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This Northern California project is part of the VTA’s effort to transform its fleet to 100% zero emissions by 2036 — before a state requirement takes effect for all public transit agencies to transition to 100% zero emissions by 2040. The VTA is an independent agency that serves Santa Clara County. It currently has a fleet of 441 buses, but only 10 are electric.

VTA formed a partnership with Scale Microgrid Solutions, Proterra and Schneider Electric to build a 1.5-MW solar energy system at its 10-acre Cerone Yard with a 1-MW/4-MWh stationary battery energy storage system. Scale Microgrid plans to build the solar and storage microgrid and act as project manager, said Tim Victor, Scale Microgrid’s business development manager, in a phone call on Sept. 21.