Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Alternative Clean Energy Roundup: 23 April 2014

San Diego Recognized in Leading American Solar Cities Report
April 10, 2014 - Today, Mayor Kevin Faulconer and other solar advocates gathered at the Mission Bay Aquatic Center, the first net-zero commercial building in San Diego, to celebrate the City of San Diego's recognition in being ranked the second largest solar producing city in the nation. The report, "Shining Cities: At the Forefront of America's Solar Energy Revolution" released today by Environment California Research and Policy Center, placed San Diego just behind Los Angeles. The last two consecutive reports by Environment California ranked San Diego as the solar capital of the nation.

Remarks were made at the press conference by Michelle Kinman, clean energy advocate of Environment California; Len Hering, executive director of the California Center for Sustainable Energy; Mayor Kevin Faulconer; and Daniel Sullivan, founder and president of Sullivan Solar Power. read more>>>

Marjan van Aubel's Solar-Powered Current Table Uses Photosynthesis to Charge Your Gadgets
04/11/14 - Dutch designer Marjan van Aubel created a solar-powered table that can generate electricity and charge your gadgets while you work. The Current Table uses photosynthesis to create energy from diffused indoor lighting and features USB charging ports that can power all your electrical appliances throughout the year

The table’s clear orange glass work surface rests on triangular wooden legs. Inside the glass panel is a dye-synthesized solar cell that creates energy using the same mechanism as plants-photosynthesis. It utilizes the color properties of the glass similarly to the way plants use chlorophyll to convert sunlight into energy. The technology behind its application to furniture is based on placing tiny titanium dioxide particles on a piece of glass. The glass is then dyed orange, which acts as a conductor and allows the cell to absorb more sunlight. The excess energy is stored in a battery and used every time a gadget is plugged into the USB port. read more>>>

Barnes & Noble

Green homes are not ‘costly’
April 11, 2014 - India has the second largest IGBC-registered green building footprint in the world, says Syed Beary of IGBC-Bangalore in an interview with Ranjani Govind

Any IGBC-rated green building carries a certified mark with it. Today, constructing green buildings is technically feasible and economically viable, says Syed Beary, Chairman, the Indian Green Building Council-Bangalore Chapter. IGBC is highlighting the fact that it has recently crossed 2 billion sq. ft. of registered green building footprint in India. “Green buildings also make good business sense with an investment return time of two years and energy savings of almost 30 per cent per year,” he says.

That by 2022 (India @75), IGBC aspires to cross over 10 billion sq. ft of green building footprint and in the process consolidate its global leadership position in green buildings is something that speaks of a huge responsibility. read more>>>

Victory bonds could provide financial support to clean energy
April 11, 2014 - The Clean Energy Victory Bonds Act of 2014 has been introduced to Congress in an effort to secure the United States' clean energy future.

With the uncertainty surrounding tax incentives for renewable energy, the Clean Energy Victory Bond would extend vital tax credits for a decade and provide an opportunity for average investors to support the clean energy economy.

The bond is modeled after the World War II Victory Bond purchased by millions of Americans for a total of $185 billion. read more>>>

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European Commission adopts new rules on public support for energy
09 April 2014 - The European Commission has adopted new rules on public support for projects in the field of environmental protection and energy with regard to 2020 climate targets

The guidelines will support EU member states in reaching their 2020 climate targets while addressing market distortions that may result from subsidies granted to renewable energy sources. To this end, the guidelines promote a gradual move to market-based support for renewable energy. read more>>>

Nano-engineered composites promise solar efficiency boost finds Swedish university
08 April 2014 - Controlled placement of carbon nanotubes into nano-structures produces a huge boost in electronic performance researchers at Umeå University in Sweden have discovered

The use of carbon-based nanostructured materials as components in solar cells is becoming increasingly popular because of their exceptional properties. Now, in a new study, a team of physicists and chemists at Umeå University have joined forces to produce nano-engineered carbon nanotubes networks with novel properties. Their results have been published in the prestigious journal Advanced Materials. read more>>>

A4C - Accessorize your device

ViVood: Tiny Pop-Up Wooden Home From Spain Comes With Built-in Solar Panels
04/13/14 - A group of Spanish architects and engineers joined forces to create ViVood - a tiny wooden prefab home. Developed by Daniel Mayo Pardo, this little energy-efficient shelter comes complete with integrated solar panels. The modular home is made from pine wood, and it can be adapted to different sizes, landscapes and needs.

ViVood was designed and manufactured in Spain using local materials and labor. Its technologically advanced design allows for easy mass production, and therefore lower costs. Its roof and walls pop-up from its wooden base, which comes with adjustable legs that can adapt to any terrain. read more>>>

Suniva Powers Walter Reed’s Wounded Warrior Lodge
April 10, 2014 - Solar Parking Canopy Offsets Power at Rehabilitation Center

Suniva, Inc., a metro-Atlanta based manufacturer of high-quality, high-efficiency crystalline silicon solar cells and modules, today announced that its products were selected for a photovoltaic system to power the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC),the Nation’s Medical Center, providing treatment and support for our wounded, ill and injured service members and their families.

The WRNMMC, located in Bethesda, Maryland, recently installed a 297kW solar parking canopy at The Wounded Warrior Lodge, an extended-stay treatment and rehabilitation facility for wounded service members. The solar canopy, Powered by Suniva®, covers a six-story parking deck and was installed by sub-contractor, SolBright Renewable Energy and managed by contractor, dck worldwide and partner, Ttec. read more>>>

ThermoSoft International Corporation

Tiny Human-Powered Wheely's Cafe Serves Coffee Brewed by the Sun
04/10/14 - Urban eco-conscious coffee connoisseurs are going to love this. Wheely's Cafe is a specially-made bicycle cart that serves coffee brewed by solar-power, and it's almost ready to hit city streets all over the world. Referred to as an "ecological café bike," Wheely's bicycle carts are equipped with everything needed to sell coffee, tea, soft drinks and pastries, but, unlike most of today's coffee shops, they do it without leaving a harmful carbon footprint.

Developed by the popular Nordic Society For Invention and Discovery (NCID), Wheely’s bikes are 100 percent eco-friendly, CO2 neutral and carbon footprint negative. The bikes are human-powered and the coffee is brewed using a solar-powered 31ah battery. Currently in midst of a high energy Indiegogo campaign, the company boasts healthy, happy coffee that doesn’t come at a high cost to the environment. In fact, the company claims that while buying one cup of coffee at your local Starbucks releases 400 grams of CO2 in the air, Wheely’s coffee is 100% free of emissions. read more>>>

Solar, Sky Cameras and Hard Math: A New Way to Integrate PV on the Grid
April 11, 2014 - Insanely complex math, and never enough data -- that’s the conundrum in trying to model the ebb and flow of solar power and energy storage on the grid edge.

Large-scale transmission systems are well modeled. But the majority of the grid below the substation provides little to work with beyond original engineering specs -- and hopefully, up-to-date maintenance and replacement records -- to turn into useful data for software platforms.

That makes it very difficult to capture or predict voltage anomalies, reactive power problems and other disruptions coming from customer-side energy assets like rooftop solar. read more>>>

Friday, April 18, 2014

Alternative Clean Energy Roundup: 18 April 2014

The world's dumbest idea: Taxing solar energy
17 April 2014 - In a setback for the renewable energy movement, the state House in Oklahoma this week passed a bill that would levy a new fee on those who generate their own energy through solar equipment or wind turbines on their property. The measure, which sailed to passage on a near unanimous vote after no debate, is likely to be signed into law by Republican Gov. Mary Fallin.

The bill, known as S.B. 1456, will specifically target those who install power generation systems on their property and sell the excess energy back to the grid. However, those who already have such renewable systems installed will not be affected. read more>>>

Well you Oklahomans, and every other state, know what you need to do as those seeking to represent? you are laying out their resumes, that's a joke {resumes?}, for the jobs sought! Not only in state but federal as well, and not only on the special interests issues, so called conservatives bought and fully owned, being blocked in their favor and certainly not yours or your communities, while you also pay for their every needs!

On alternative energy sources they've been doing so for some forty years now, not only blocking the products but the innovative advances in as well as R&D into new source abilities!!

PUD's innovative hydropower plan
April 16, 2014 - The Snohomish Public Utility District (PUD) has developed an innovative plan for a proposed hydropower project -- the Sunset Fish Passage & Energy Project -- which requires no dam, weir or river barriers, ultimately saving $10 million in construction costs.

The PUD's updated design modifies the water intake area and fish screens to cut excavation needs in half. It also reduces construction time by an estimated six months. In addition, more efficient turbines at a proposed powerhouse would increase annual energy production.

The no-dam design is possible due to the unique geography of the South Fork Skykomish River. Upstream from Sunset Falls, the river turns sharply -- a complete 180 degrees -- creating a deep pool of water, which can accommodate an underwater intake structure. read more>>>

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DOE's roadmap to energy security, prosperity
April 16, 2014 - The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has released a comprehensive blueprint to guide the agency's core mission of ensuring America's security and prosperity by addressing its energy, environmental, and nuclear challenges through transformative science and technology solutions. The 2014 Strategic Plan provides a roadmap for achieving these goals.

"Following this roadmap, the Department will continue building a cleaner energy environment, strengthening our economy, creating jobs, and fostering innovation in the process," said Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz in a statement. "The priorities outlined in this plan are critical to advancing the nation's energy security and providing for a more secure and prosperous country for future generations." read more>>>

Wind and energy storage a winning combination for ERCOT
April 16, 2014 - The Texas Energy Storage Alliance (TESA) and the Energy Storage Association (ESA) are working together to assist in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) stakeholder driven market redesign process. ESA is the organization under which proposed rules enabling the advancement of utility scale energy storage technologies will be ensured. As energy storage technologies are commercialized and the energy storage industry grows nationwide, this Texas-based effort will benefit greatly from the leadership by ESA.

"Texas is an important market for energy storage, and ERCOT is leading a stakeholder process that could become a model for other system operators," said Darrell Hayslip, ESA's chairman of the board. "Energy storage is uniquely positioned to provide immense value in the ancillary services market." read more>>>

ThermoSoft International Corporation

DOE conducting smart grid cybersecurity research
April 16, 2014 - The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is calling on federally funded research and development centers to apply for research grants. The DOE's National Energy Technology Laboratory, on behalf of the Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability, is seeking applications to conduct research, development and demonstrations leading to next-generation tools and technologies that will become widely adopted to enhance and accelerate deployment of cybersecurity capabilities for the U.S energy infrastructure, including cyber secure integration of smart grid technologies.

The research will concentrate on enhancing the cybersecurity of energy delivery control systems, including electricity generation, transmission and distribution, as well as the production, refining, storage and distribution of oil and gas. read more>>>

Microgrids becoming mainstream
April 15, 2014 - Driven by growth in distributed generation and a greater desire of consumers and businesses for greater energy independence, the microgrid concept has moved steadily toward the mainstream. Microgrid deployments are happening worldwide, with some new subsegments heating up -- with grid-tied utility distribution microgrids (UDM) and direct current (DC) microgrids attracting increased attention, according to Navigant research.

"The pace of microgrid deployments has accelerated rapidly around the world, in a variety of application segments," said Peter Asmus, principal research analyst with Navigant Research. "In the United States, in particular, the increasing frequency of severe weather is prompting utilities to reconsider their historic opposition to customer-owned microgrids that can disconnect from the larger grid and continue to function, allowing critical mission functions to stay up and running." read more>>>

Clemson researchers work on future of nation’s electrical grid
April 15, 2014 - With the help of power company money, Clemson University professors are helping develop smart grid technologies. Keith Corzine is working on securing the nation’s flow of electricity, a challenge he says was underscored in April 2013 when gunmen attacked a Silicon Valley substation.

“This kind of attack at multiple locations around the country could take out the grid,” said Corzine, who works on the main campus as the Warren H. Owen-Duke Energy distinguished professor of electrical and computer engineering.

Researchers are looking for ways to keep the grid secure, help drive down the cost of renewable energy and make the system more reliable and efficient. read more>>>

US$45B from green economy?
April 16, 2014 - Kenya's transition to a green economy could produce major economic benefits -- equivalent to an estimated US$45 billion by 2030 — as well as greater food security, a cleaner environment and higher productivity of natural resources, according to a new study launched yesterday by the Government of Kenya and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP).

Titled the Green Economy Assessment Report: Kenya, the study finds that the transition to an inclusive, low emission, resource efficient green economy will result in stronger economic growth and increased wealth-creation opportunities by 2021. read more>>>

Solaire Generation and IRC Install First Long Span 360 Solar Carports at Danversport Yacht Club
April 15, 2014 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- Solaire Generation's first Long Span 360 solar carport system was recently commissioned at the Danversport Yacht Club, bringing 253 kW more renewable energy to the Bay State. The Long Span 360, Solaire's latest patent pending solar carport design, is a unique architectural solar structure that optimizes a parking lot's generating capacity by spanning two parallel parking rows as well as the internal drive aisle. The Long Span's customizable design increases a parking lot's solar capacity by 25% versus a traditional solar parking canopy, and can be built up to 110' wide with up to 70' column spacing.

Industrial Roofing Companies (IRC) of Lewiston, Maine, who served as EPC and project developer, sought out Solaire, headquartered in New York City, due to Solaire's proven track record and unique design expertise. Solaire and IRC worked closely to offer the Danversport Yacht Club a custom solution that fit the goals of the project. Solaire designed, fabricated and installed the canopies, completing the foundations and steel erection on time despite harsh winter conditions. read more>>>

Scientists come up with method of reducing solar panel glare
April 15, 2014 - The glare from solar farms could be a thing of the past, thanks to scientists at Loughborough University. Researchers have developed a multi-layer anti-reflection (AR) coating for glass surfaces, which reduces the sun's reflection from photovoltaic panels while at the same time improving their efficiency.

The coating was developed by researchers at the Centre for Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technology (CREST) who believe it will be attractive to solar panel manufacturers.

It is applied using the same technology as that used for depositing anti-reflection coatings on eye glasses. read more>>>