Tag Archives: Renewable Energy World

Sunvault’s Hybrid Solar Energy Storage Device

Startup SunVault has an interesting technology under its hat, SunVault’s hybrid solar energy storage device.

Originally Published on Renewable Energy World

By Roy L Hales, Contributor

Supercapacitors have been compared to the flash from an old camera. They give an immediate burst of energy, which is then gone. A number of companies have combined supercapacitors with batteries for applications that require immediate response and sustained capacity. Startup SunVault Energy has developed a graphene hybrid device that is both a supercapacitor and battery storage. It is modular in design, meaning it can be shaped to power.

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New York’s Statewide Adoption Of Community Utilities

How Governor Andrew Cuomo is using Local Power & Micro-grids

Originally Published on Renewable Energy World

By Roy L Hales

New York’s antiquated infrastructure was in trouble long before hurricane Sandy. The bulk power system, designed to meet a peak demand 75% higher than most of America, is underutilized most of the day. New Yorkers have been paying some of the highest electrical bills in the nation, so that air conditioners have power during the hottest summer days. Hurricane Sandy revealed the vulnerabilities of the low lying Atlantic state’s grid. Governor Andrew Cuomo’s response is a plan calling for New York’s statewide adoption of community utilities, or Community Choice Aggregation (CCA).

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Why Fungi-Based Biofuels Could Eventually Replace Conventional Jet Fuel

Originally Published on Renewable Energy World

By Roy L Hales

The University of Washington is developing a fungi based aviation biofuel that might be competitive on the open market. Fungi naturally do many of the complicated chemical processes required by other fuels. This should mean that a fungi biofuel has lower production costs. The next step is developing a strain that is more suitable for mass production. Dr Birgitte K. Ahring, Director and Battelle Distinguished Professor of the University’s Bioproduct Sciences and Engineering Laboratory, explained why fungi-based biofuels could eventually replace conventional jet fuels.

Our very preliminary cost estimate shows that if we get production in the right place, it will be comparable with production from fossil fuels,” she said.

Image Credit: Dr Birgitte K Ahring with Malavika Sinha, one of the students who worked with the fungi Aspergillus carbonarius in the lab.

(Read More)


A Partial Solution To California’s Water Problems

A new report offers some solutions to the severe drought in California, however, the problem will require much bigger thinking.

Originally Published on Renewable Energy World

By Roy L Hales

A new report, Clean Energy Opportunities in California’s Water Sector, offers what could be a partial solution to California’s water problems. The authors, Juliet Christian-Smith and Laura Wisland from the Union of Concerned scientists, primarily focus on the 20 percent of California’s electricity that is consumed by the water sector. They point out that most water and wastewater utilities own assets (land, reservoirs, ponds etc) that could be used to produce renewable energy.

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While Germany Explores Energy Storage Technologies at Breakneck Speeds, The US Isn’t Far Behind

Published on Renewable Energy World

Philip Hiersemenzel, spokesman for Younicos, stated that Germany could be using 60 percent renewables if the right storage tech were in place. Startling as this announcement seems, the US is not as far behind as people think.

By Roy Hales, Contributor

The U.S. is surging ahead in terms of adopting battery storage. In 2013-2014, U.S. companies installed, or were in the process of installing more than 300 MW of energy storage capacity. The largest is Southern California Edison’s Tehachapi Energy Storage Project. It is a 8-MW system capable of supplying 32 megawatt-hours of electricity to the grid.

(Read More)

A longer version of this story was in the November/December 204 Renewable Energy World Magazine

Renewable Energy Lowers Consumer Electricity Bills in Alberta

Published on Renewable Energy World

By Roy L Hales

Vancouver, British Columbia — In Alberta, Canada, renewable energy is not increasing energy prices for consumers as it has in other parts of the world, such as Germany. In fact, the exact opposite is true.

Alberta clears all energy through the spot market, although some PPAs are still in effect from when the province deregulated. As a result, wind and solar energy sell for discount prices. (Read More)

(Image at top of page courtesy the Pembina Institute)

Lessons from Germany – Part I , Jennifer Runyon

Screen-shot-2014-03-18-at-3.43.47-PM1Broadcast on Cortes Community Radio, CKTZ, 89.5 FM at 10:00 am on October 8, 2014. 

Continue reading Lessons from Germany – Part I , Jennifer Runyon