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Underserved and Indigenous Community Microgrids

Open Date:


Close Date:


Upcoming Milestones:

If the FOA is released, Concept Papers will be required.

Eligible Recipients:

  • Native/Tribal Entity

Program Purpose:

  • Energy Infrastructure

Reserved for Energy



Office of Electricity (OE)

Funded by:

U.S. Department of Energy


The objective of this planned FOA is to develop and implement replicable microgrid solutions for underserved and Indigenous communities in remote and islanded regions throughout the United States. This FOA is in pursuit of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 Congressional direction, which stipulates “…coordinated research and development of microgrid-related technologies, with a focus on underserved and Indigenous communities. The research shall focus on development and deployment of advanced microgrid-enabling technologies, including renewable generation and storage systems, multi-nodal small-scale high-voltage direct current, advanced demand-side management strategies, and microgrid control systems. The research will aim to provide replicable microgrid solutions to address the broad array of challenges facing underserved and Indigenous communities in remote and islanded regions throughout the United States.” To achieve intended objectives, each microgrid solution proposed under this FOA should range from 100 kilowatts (kW) to 10 megawatts (MW) of aggregated generation capacity; and support improving the metrics of reliability, resilience, decarbonization, and affordability.

In the context of this proposed FOA, a community is defined as a group of individuals, households, and businesses in geographic proximity to one another. This opportunity is focused on underserved and Indigenous communities in remote and islanded regions throughout the United States including Tribal Nations and territories. The “underserved communities” are focused on low-income, energy-burdened communities that must meet the criteria below:

  • 30% of the community population is classified as low income; AND
  • High or severe energy burden2 (median spending of household income on energy bills ≥6%).

Indigenous communities include, but are not limited to, communities of Tribal Nations, Native Americans, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiians. Prospective applicants responding to the proposed FOA will need to describe how the participating community/communities meet the eligibility criteria even if these data do not specifically show that they are eligible.

If this planned FOA is released, resulting awards will be made under each of the three areas of interest described below.

  • Area of Interest 1: Modular Microgrid Systems with Standardized Control/Communication Functionalities for a Range of System Sizes and Renewable Contributions
  • Area of Interest 2: Multi-port Medium Voltage DC (MVDC) Converter Research and Development (R&D) for Integration of Microgrids and Clean Energy
  • Area of Interest 3: Regional Initiatives to Support Microgrid Deployments within Underserved and Indigenous Communities

Prospective projects proposed under the previously described AOIs should be carried out by a community multi-stakeholder team which, at a minimum, includes representation from: (1) a lead organization, (2) a community-based organization, (3) a local, tribal, territorial, regional, or state government entity serving the community, (4) a local electric utility serving the community, (5) a microgrid technology product provider (manufacturer, vendor, and commercialization entity), and (6) a microgrid technology developer (university, national laboratory, and other research institution).

Related Resources

Additional information is available on the Resources page.

Funding Details

Funding Source:
Funding Type:
Grant - match required
Total Amount Available:
Limit per Applicant:
Estimated Awards:

Applicant Guidance

Contact Information

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