Archive: Smart Grid

Prepare Your Renewable Plant for Cold Weather Operations

Last winter’s polar vortex was a reminder that, despite several years of mild winters, colder months can still pack a wallop. Decades of coal, gas, and nuclear plant operations have taught plant operators

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California Wants Proposals for Renewable-Powered Microgrids

The California Energy Commission (CEC) issued a solicitation for proposals earlier this month to fund projects that will demonstrate the feasibility of renewable energy and storage–powered microgrids. A total of $26.5 million in funding is available for three groups of potential projects: low-carbon-based microgrids for critical facilities, high-penetration renewable-based microgrids, and advanced smart and bidirectional […]

RWE AG Head of Group Strategy & Corporate Development Thomas Birr

RWE’s Thomas Birr on Corporate Strategy in a Changing German Electricity Ecosystem

RWE AG is Europe’s third-largest electricity and fifth-largest gas marketer, with holdings in upstream oil and gas production, power grids, and energy trading. Its German power subsidiary has been the utility poster child for the effects of the Energiewende, the transformation of the Germany power system away from nuclear and coal toward renewable energy and […]

EEI We Stand For Energy campaign

The EEI’s Campaign for Electric Utility Industry Supremacy

At the Edison Electric Institute (EEI) annual meeting this week in Las Vegas, the tone was one of collaboration with partners from Washington to distributed generation companies. Those partnerships will be needed as the investor-owned utility (IOU) industry fights not so much a war on coal as a war for mindshare and wallet share in […]

SPIDERS microgrid program, Sandia National Laboratories

Military Microgrids: Wanted and Needed but Tough to Deploy

Anyone who follows either the energy industry or the military knows that all branches of the U.S. military have aggressive goals for renewable energy and for improving energy security and independence. Microgrids are a key part of that plan. When I wrote about military microgrids in “The Military Gets Smart Grid” back in January 2012, […]

Borrego Springs microgrid components. Operated by San Diego Gas & Electric.

Interest Growing in Commercial and Community Microgrids

Aside from places where microgrids have a track record—educational, industrial, and commercial campuses—commercial and community microgrids are still the domain of early adopters, but the number of people wanting to travel the trail they are blazing is increasing. A microgrid is any collection of interconnected loads and distributed energy resources within clearly defined electrical boundaries […]

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Islands Are the Low-Hanging Fruit for Microgrids

If you’re looking for the easiest place to deploy microgrid technology, look at islands. That was the general consensus of presenters at the 4th Military & Commercial Microgrids Summit in Washington, D.C., held June 17-19. In addition to a presentation about a microgrid being developed for Necker Island—owned by Sir Richard Branson, founder of the […]

Microgrid equipment at the National Wind Technology Center in Colorado. | Photo courtesy of the National Renewable Energy Lab.

The State of the Microgrid Market: Promise and Present Realities

If, as Navigant Research suggests, the global microgrid market will exceed $40 billion annually by 2020, where is all the capacity going, and what’s fueling it (literally and figuratively)? Peter Asmus, a long-time researcher of smart grid technologies at Navigant, shared that market projection and others at the 4th Military & Commercial Microgrids Summit in […]

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NYISO Opens Smart Control Center

The New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) this April replaced its 44-year-old primary power control center with a state-of-the-art facility in Rensselaer County that is outfitted with digital monitoring

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DOE to Open $4B More in Loan Guarantees for Renewables, Energy Efficiency Projects

The Department of Energy (DOE) plans to make an additional $4 billion in loan guarantees available to help commercialize U.S. renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies that avoid, reduce, or sequester greenhouse gases. The DOE on Wednesday issued a draft loan guarantee solicitation under Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (through Section […]