Universidad Politécnica de Madrid

Instituto de energía solar

R&D at IES

PV centrals and minigrids


Although the grid-connected PV system market has eclipsed the traditional PV rural electrification one, this market continues existing with significant business in absolute terms.

One of its most relevant aspects is the rural electrification with PV centrals and PV minigrids. They offer an equivalent service than the standard grid but avoid the highly expensive extension of the electrical networks.

How to assure the reliability of these systems and how to manage them due to the limited energy in the batteries, are key open questions that we contribute to respond with our research.

Currently, we are focused on the hybridization of diesel and PV to respond to the demand, not only from the rural electrification programs but also from the industry like mining, which owns isolated electrical networks but pays too much for the fuel. We are developing solutions to partially substitute the diesel motors by PV generators, solving the problem of possible grid instabilities due to PV power fluctuations.


Contact person: Prof. Eduardo Lorenzo

Selected publications

  1. J. Muñoz, L. Narvarte, and E. Lorenzo, "Experience with PV-Diesel hybrid village power systems in Southern Morocco”, Progress in Photovoltaics, vol. 15, pp. 529-539, 2007. (DOI: 10.1002/pip.756)

  2. L. M. Carrasco, L. Narvarte, F. Martínez-Moreno, and R. Moretón, "In-field assessment of batteries and PV modules in a large photovoltaic rural electrification programme”, Energy, vol. 75, pp. 281-288, 2014. (DOI: 10.1016/j.energy.2014.07.074)

  3. A. Gago-Calderón, J. Fernández-Ramos, and L. Narvarte, "Temperature-controlled light-emitting diode lamp for photovoltaic rural applications”, Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications

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