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710.1 Scope
This article covers electric power production systems that operate in island mode and installations not connected to an electric power production and distribution network.
Informational Note: These systems are capable of operating in island mode, independent from an electric power production and distribution network, and include isolated microgrid systems or interactive with other power sources. Stand-alone systems often include a single or a compatible interconnection of sources such as engine generators, solar PV, wind, ESS, or batteries.
710.6 Equipment Approval
All equipment shall be approved for the intended use in accordance with one of the following:
  1. Be listed for the application
  2. Be evaluated for the application and have a field label applied
Informational Note: Inverters identified as "multimode" and "stand-alone" are specifically identified and certified to operate in this application. Stand-alone inverters operate in island mode. Multimode inverters operate in either island mode (previously called "stand-alone mode") or interactive mode, if it has been installed with the optional utility grid connection. A multimode inverter will only operate in island mode if it is never connected to an electric utility supply. Stand-alone inverters are not evaluated for and are not intended for connection to export power in parallel with an electric utility.
710.10 Identification of Power Sources
A permanent plaque or directory shall be installed at a building supplied by a standalone system at each service equipment location, or at an approved readily visible location. The plaque or directory shall denote the location of each power source disconnecting means for the building or be grouped with other plaques or directories for other on-site sources. Where multiple sources supply the building, the plaque or directory shall be marked with the wording "CAUTION: MULTIPLE SOURCES OF POWER." The marking shall comply with 110.21(B).
Exception: Installations with multiple co-located power production sources shall be permitted to be identified as a group(s). The plaque or directory shall not be required to identify each power source individually.
710.12 Stand-Alone Inverter Input Circuit Current
The maximum current shall be the stand-alone continuous inverter input current rating when the inverter is producing rated power at the lowest input voltage.
710.15 General
Premises wiring systems shall be adequate to meet the requirements of this Code for similar installations supplied by a feeder or service. The wiring on the supply side of the building or structure disconnecting means shall comply with the requirements of this Code, except as modified by 710.15(A) through (G).
(A) Supply Output
Power supply to premises wiring systems fed by stand-alone or isolated microgrid power sources shall be permitted to have less capacity than the calculated load. The capacity of the sum of all sources of the stand-alone supply shall be equal to or greater than the load posed by the largest single utilization equipment connected to the system. Calculated general lighting loads shall not be considered as a single load.
Informational Note: For general-use loads the system capacity can be calculated using the sum of the capacity of the firm sources, such as generators and ESS inverters. For specialty loads intended to be powered directly from a variable source, the capacity can be calculated using the sum of the variable sources, such as PV or wind inverters, or the combined capacity of both firm and variable sources.
(B) Sizing and Protection
The circuit conductors between a stand-alone source and a building or structure disconnecting means shall be sized based on the sum of the output ratings of the stand-alone source(s). For three-phase interconnections, the phase loads shall be controlled or balanced to be compatible with specifications of the sum of the power supply capacities.
(C) Single 120-Volt Supply
Stand-alone and isolated microgrid systems shall be permitted to supply 120 volts to single-phase, 3-wire, 120/240-volt service equipment or distribution panels where there are no 240-volt outlets and where there are no multiwire branch circuits. In all installations, the sum of the ratings of the power sources shall be less than the rating of the neutral bus in the service equipment. This equipment shall be marked with the following words or equivalent:
The warning sign(s) or label(s) shall comply with 110.21(B).
(D) Three-Phase Supply
Stand-alone and microgrid systems shall be permitted to supply three-phase, 3-wire or 4-wire systems.
(E) Energy Storage or Backup Power System Requirements
Energy storage or backup power supplies shall not be required.
(F) Back-Fed Circuit Breakers
Plug-in-type back-fed circuit breakers connected to an interconnected supply shall be secured in accordance with 408.36(D). Circuit breakers marked "line" and "load" shall not be backfed.
(G) Voltage and Frequency Control
The stand-alone or isolated microgrid supply shall be controlled so that voltage and frequency remain within suitable limits for the connected loads.