June 23, 2014 - Despite high upfront capital costs, geothermal power is the only form of renewable electricity capable of achieving high capacity utilization and supply base load -- putting it in a unique market position and allowing it to compete with conventional and non-conventional sources of power generation. Attractive payback periods and zero fuel costs are driving investments in the industry, and the geothermal power generation market is expected to reach $8.9 billion in 2019 -- up from $2.5 billion in 2013 -- expanding at a CAGR of 23.58 percent from 2013 to 2019, according to Transparency Market Research.
Regulatory initiatives by governments around the world may prove to be both drivers and restraints for the market. read more>>>
June 23, 2014 - The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has announced the availability of $3.2 million to launch the National Incubator Initiative for Clean Energy, which will create a national support network to serve the clean energy small business and entrepreneur community and bring them closer to market readiness. The Initiative will establish a suite of technological and training resources, connect critical industry and energy sector partners, enhance incubator best practices, and increase access to information about industry resources to advance innovative clean energy technologies emerging from universities and federal laboratories.
"Small businesses and entrepreneurs make crucial contributions to our nation's economy every day," said Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz in a statement. read more>>>
June 23, 2014 - Canadian companies expect their green practices will grow from one third to one half by 2017, according to a report prepared by McGraw Hill Construction.
The report, titled Canada Green Building Trends: Benefits Driving the New and Retrofit Market, was commissioned by the Canada Green Building Council and shows that companies investing in green buildings are realizing a significant return on their investments.
Of the findings, 82 percent of building owners and developers reported decreases in their green buildings compared to similar buildings, and 68 percent reported decreases in water consumption. read more>>>
06/23/14 - Imagine a circular loft with plenty of skylights and a solar array on top, gently rotating to orient itself towards the sun, and you have the basic idea of what goes into a Solaleya Domespace home. Like an eco-friendly update to the Chemosphere in Los Angeles, the domes are constructed with only FSC-certified wood and have been proven to withstand category five hurricanes and earthquakes up to magnitude eight on the MSK scale.
Solaleya‘s dome homes feature 90 percent wood construction and are insulated with cork. The roofs feature sky-facing windows that suffuse interior spaces with light and an optional feature is a small mechanical structure in the base that allows the domes to rotate. According to Solaleya, turning the house 360 degrees requires roughly the same amount of energy as vacuuming the house once, and in partially-shaded areas this allows the home to maximize the amount of sun absorbed by solar panels on the roof. read more>>>
06/23/14 - A new trend is springing up across the country that’s making affordable solar energy increasingly available to the masses. Community solar gardens allow customers who aren’t able to establish their own solar power systems to buy into a solar array built elsewhere and get a credit on their electricity bill for the power produced by the panels. These arrangements that allow people to not only cut their power bills but also switch to more green energy first emerged in Colorado, but have since spread across the country – with laws allowing the projects to progress through legislatures in California, Minnesota and Washington D.C., and one on the books since 2008 in Massachusetts – where the trend is currently taking flight.
So how does it work? A developer builds a solar farm and sells the electrical output of a certain number of panels to a customer, based on their energy needs or how much power the customer wants to offset. read more>>>
June 22, 2014 - Concentrating solar power (CSP) could supply a substantial amount of current energy demand, according to the study published in the journal Nature Climate Change. In the Mediterranean region, for example, the study shows that a connected CSP system could provide 70-80% of current electricity demand, at no extra cost compared to gas-fired power plants. That percentage is similar to what a standard energy production plant, such as a nuclear plant, can provide.
"Solar energy systems can satisfy much more of our hunger for electricity, at not much more cost than what we currently have," says Stefan Pfenninger, who led the study while working at IIASA. He is now a Research Postgraduate at the Grantham Institute at Imperial College London. read more>>>
23.06.2014 - The percentage of solar technology in the field of renewable energy production is expected to grow in the coming years. Sun trackers are being used in Concentring Solar Power (CSP) and bring some strong advantages in Photovoltaic systems: improved efficiency and a greater quantity of energy production during the day.
To follow the course of the sun, tracker systems rely on precise drives that are constantly improved, as an ever increasing number of solar plants are being commissioned, on a global scale. read more>>>
June 4, 2014 - The electricity grid -- one of the most complex networks in the modern economy -- has functioned, for the most part, without any stored resources. However, the rapid expansion of distributed, renewable energy resources is increasing demand for energy storage on the grid even as technological advances in electrochemistry are enabling advanced batteries to play an increasingly important role in grid management. The annual energy capacity of advanced batteries for utility-scale energy storage applications will grow from 412 MWh in 2014 to more than 51,200 MWh in 2023, at a compound annual growth rate of 71 percent, according to Navigant Research.
The process of electricity being consumed immediately after it is created is changing due to the emergence of a new generation of advanced batteries that are safe, low-cost, and efficient enough to allow for storage on the grid -- leading to the first instances of large-scale energy storage for the electric distribution network in high-value applications like frequency regulation and demand charge mitigation. read more>>>
June 4, 2014 - The U.S. power industry has a vested interest in maintaining an educated workforce as a shortage of engineering graduates leaves many companies struggling to fill jobs. But a first-of-its-kind, play-based power grid exhibit is a step toward changing that.
In 2012, high school students from 29 industrialized countries outperformed the U.S. in math; 22 outperformed the U.S. in science. Projects like ABB's Kid Grid at Marbles Kids Museum in Raleigh, North Carolina, are designed to give children positive encouragement in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education at an early age. read more>>>
June 22, 2014 - Fort Bragg is teaming with private industry to ensure the nation's largest military post keeps running, even during emergencies.
The Department of Defense is funding a $3.4 million project to improve energy security on post by creating microgrids.
The grids will allow Fort Bragg to power key parts of post, even if others don't have electricity because of a natural disaster or some other power disruption.
Fort Bragg is home to several key military commands, leading both special operations forces and the military's Global Response Force - soldiers on standby to respond to any number of contingencies, including humanitarian assistance. read more>>>