Archive: Business

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The return of compressed air energy storage

Faced with soaring energy prices, researchers and developers worldwide are giving compressed air energy storage (CAES)—a technology almost 50 years old—a dusting, a spit shine, and a new life. In particular, they see it as a critical component for the dispatch of wind and other renewable power. The technology, which involves storing off-peak-generated energy in […]

POWER digest (October 2008)

News items of interest to power industry professionals. EDF and CGNPG create joint venture for Taishan nukes. Électricité de France (EDF) and the China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group (CGNPG) on Aug. 10 finalized a framework agreement made earlier, in November 2007, and formally created a joint venture company to build and operate two evolutionary pressurized […]

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Global Monitor (September 2008)

Cost hikes for all things nuclear in the U.S. and UK / North Americans plan liquid makeover for coal / California balloon bill deflates in legislative process / The Lego skyscraper / Of manure and methane / U.S. small wind turbine market moving slowly / Israeli desert center tests solar thermal tech for California desert / POWER digest / Correction

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Global Monitor (August 2008)

Australia considers seabed sequestration legislation / ElectraTherm installs its first commercial waste-heat generator / Mass. researchers achieve dramatic increase in thermoelectric efficiency / Nuclear power option for developing nations gaining steam / The great green wall of China / POWER digest / Correction

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Digital technology spawns need for configuration management

Documenting changes to the distributed control system and other digital plant applications should be considered a critical element of managing risk—and of safe, efficient daily operations and maintenance. Coming up with a practical configuration management approach, though, isn’t easy.

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Woods and power company CEOs agree: “The state of the industry is cautious”

It is rare indeed to witness, at an otherwise staid industry forum, the public rebuke of the country’s most prominent supplier to the electric power industry. But at the Keynote session and Power Industry CEO Roundtable of the 2008 ELECTRIC POWER Conference & Exhibition in Baltimore this May, Milton Lee, general manager and CEO of […]

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Generation next: Strategies for recruiting younger workers

In our April 2008 issue, the article “The aging workforce: Panic is not a strategy” focused on how to reconfigure human resource practices in order to find enough well-trained new personnel to replace the large number of baby boomers who will be retiring in the next few years. This month we profile several utilities that are using innovative approaches to recruit younger technical staff and skilled craft labor to fill positions being vacated in growing numbers by retiring employees.

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Climate change: Policy via litigation?

By Steven F. Greenwald and Jeffrey P. Gray David Crane, the CEO of NRG Energy, was recently quoted in a widely disseminated publication as saying: “It is a moral imperative that we take steps to reduce CO2 concentration in the earth’s atmosphere.” One might expect those reacting to Crane’s comments (made in a February 2007 […]

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Global Monitor (July 2008)

Yucca Mountain plan sent to NRC/ CPV cells get cooling chips from IBM/ StatoilHydro to pilot test first offshore floating wind turbine/ U.S. rivers next massive power source?/ Siemens delivers 500-MW gasifiers/ Algae: A green solution/ POWER digest

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Assessing and addressing cyber threats to control systems

Control systems used by utilities and other operators of America’s industrial infrastructure increasingly rely on an Internet connection that makes them as vulnerable to hackers as any computer or network. One reason many utility control systems are vulnerable is that, unlike your ISP’s systems, they don’t record an audit trail that reveals the source of the attack.