Alstom introduces a new 3-MW wind turbine, one of the world’s most powerful for onshore installations; Solyndra reports its larges-ever rooftop installation of cylindrical photovoltaic (PV) systems — a 704-kW project in New Jersey; Plug Power reports that its GenDrive fuel cell units will power Walmart Canada’s fleet of electric lift trucks at a Alberta distribution center.
Alstom introduced its 3-MW ECO 110 wind turbine, one of the most powerful onshore wind turbines in the world, specifically designed to ensure the highest energy production on low- to medium-wind speed sites throughout Europe and worldwide. The ECO 110 features a 110-meter rotor diameter, one of the largest rotors available today for onshore applications. The ECO 110 can produce enough energy for 2,000 households, and avoid the production of 7,000 tonnes a year of CO2. Its 53-meter-long blades capture more power more effectively, meaning fewer turbines and less land space required for the equivalent output. The ECO 110 is the second model of Alstom’s new 3-MW ECO 100 platform.
Alternate Energy Holdings Inc. (AEHI) entered the final stage of gaining local approval to build a nuclear power plant, the Payette County Plant, also called the Idaho Energy Complex. Recently the Payette County Board of Commissioners unanimously approved a county-wide zoning change that was designed for AEHI, specifically to allow for a nuclear power plant. The property in question could be rezoned from agricultural to industrial, but only if a nuclear power plant is built there. AEHI says residents who testified in favor of the rezoning outnumbered the opposition at least three-to-one during every public meeting.
Solyndra Inc., a manufacturer of cylindrical photovoltaic (PV) systems for commercial rooftops, announced that LPS Industries has completed the largest Solyndra installation in the United States to date, a 704-kW project in Moonachie, N.J. The LPS installation consists of approximately 3,800 Solyndra solar panels, producing more than 825,000 kWh of electricity and eliminating more than 1.1 million pounds of CO2 emissions annually—enough to power more than 100 residential homes per year according to U.S. EPA calculations. Solis Partners designed, engineered and installed the system in combination with a new white cool roof system. Solis worked with Allied Building Products on procurement, financing, and logistics. The panels use cylindrical modules that capture sunlight across a 360-degree PV surface capable of converting into electricity direct, diffuse and reflected sunlight from the rooftop.
China-based DongFang recently licensed all the solar-tracking technologies of Titan Tracker, including the company’s systems for flat photovoltaics (PV), high concentrating photovoltaics (CPV), concentrating solar power (CSP) central receiver and Stirling dish systems. Dongfang Electric continues its relationships with leading technology providers in the energy sector such as Hitachi, Mitsubishi in Japan; ABB, Alstom and Foxboro in France; Repower in Germany, Windtec in Austria and now with Titan Tracker in the solar market.
Duke Energy announced the financing of assets in its commercial renewable power portfolio to help fund investments in additional clean energy projects. Duke Energy Generation Services (DEGS), a Duke Energy commercial businesses unit that owns and develops renewable power assets, raised approximately $45 million by leveraging its ownership of the 14-MW (16-MW direct current) Blue Wing Solar Project, currently under construction in San Antonio, Texas. Prudential Capital Group provided the 25-year loan.
The U.S. ESCO industry reached total annual revenues of about $4.1 billion in 2008, according to a report from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) and the National Association of Energy Service Companies (NAESCO). The report, “A Survey of the U.S. ESCO Industry: Market Growth and Development from 2008 to 2011,” is based on a sample of 44 ESCOs. It examines current revenues by market segment, contract type and technology; anticipated revenues in the next three years; and factors influencing trends in industry costs and savings. Looking ahead, the report estimates the ESCO industry’s annual revenues will exceed $7 billion in 2011, representing an average annual growth rate of 26 percent per year between 2009 and 2011. This pace of growth is driven in part by federal, state and local government performance contracting programs.
EnerNOC says the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) board of directors has approved Phase II of the TVA/EnerNOC demand-response program. The Phase II approval is for up to 560 MW of demand-response capacity for an initial 10-year term, which will represent an expansion of 400 MW to TVA’s existing deployment of approximately 160 MW with EnerNOC. Over 200 commercial, industrial, and institutional businesses across TVA’s service territory already have enrolled in Phase I of the TVA/EnerNOC demand-response program—encompassing a diverse range of facility types.
T&D Solutions, LLC, a power line maintenance and construction company serving investor-owned utilities, municipalities, and co-ops in the southern and central United States, has acquired Telectric Power, the power line and electrical substation maintenance and construction business of Telectric LLC, based in Ball, La. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. With the acquisition, T&D Solutions adds substation maintenance and construction to its range of services, making it a provider of end-to-end power line maintenance and construction services.
Wärtsilä’s WFC20 fuel cell unit has been installed onboard the Undine, a car carrier, owned by Swedish Wallenius Lines and managed by Wallenius Marine. Wartsila says the power unit is the first of its kind in the world, and will during the test period provide auxiliary power to the vessel while producing close to zero emissions. The fuel cell unit, which has a nominal output of 20 kW, is based on planar solid oxide fuel cell technology (SOFC), and fueled with methanol, which is available in all major harbors. Installation of the WFC20 fuel cell unit onboard the Undine is the result of a joint project by the international METHAPU consortium. The participants are: Wärtsilä, Wallenius Marine, Lloyd’s Register, Det Norske Veritas, and the University of Genoa, all active in fuel cell system integration, sustainable shipping, classification work or environmental assessment. The project was funded with 1 million euro from the European Union, and is part of the European Community Framework Programme (FP6).
The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) held a ground breaking ceremony June 18 for a prototype integrated solar-assisted electric-vehicle (EV) charging station being erected at EPRI’s Knoxville, Tenn., research laboratory. EPRI and TVA undertook the design process with Eaton Corp. as a contractor to create a model charging facility that will charge EVs quickly and reliably. When completed in the fall, the test station will produce data to assist in implementing key components of a smart grid, such as integrating renewables, utilizing a battery storage system, assessing the impact on reliability, testing advance metering infrastructure and analyzing electric-vehicle supply equipment. The prototype, called the Smart Modal Area Recharge Terminal (SMART) station, will provide information on the impact on distribution system reliability when several vehicles are re-fueled at the same time. EPRI provides details in a new report, accessible at EPRI.com.
Silent Power will supply the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) with distributed-energy storage technology to aid in completing the utility’s photovoltaic (PV) storage pilot at Anatolia. SMUD’s $5.9 million pilot project will evaluate how the integration of energy storage enhances the value of distributed PV resources by reducing peak loads, firming intermittent renewable capacity and maximizing overall system efficiency. Silent Power’s OnDemand Home Energy Appliance is a distributed-energy storage device that will store excess energy generated by a homeowner’s solar power system. When energy is needed during super-peak demand times (4 p.m. to 7 p.m.), SMUD and customers can draw upon stored energy from the system.
Siemens Energy and Coulomb Technologies entered a joint marketing agreement for an integrated electric vehicle (EV) product offering in the market for e-mobility and state-of-the-art electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) technology, including EV charging infrastructure. The agreement allows Siemens to offer companies, including utilities, electric retailers, municipalities and EV suppliers, the ability to monitor, bill and clear financial transactions for EV infrastructure market participants.
Plug Power Inc. announced that its GenDrive fuel cell units will power Walmart Canada’s fleet of electric lift trucks at the company’s sustainable refrigerated distribution center in Alberta, Canada. The GenDrive systems will be integrated into trucks manufactured by Crown Equipment Corp. Both perishable and freezer goods will be distributed in Walmart Canada’s newly-built facility to support retail stores in Western Canada. The GenDrive freezer units will operate in conditions as low as -20 degrees F (-29 degrees C). In addition to lower operating costs, Plug Power says GenDrive allows for productivity increases, as material handling vehicles maintain maximum power and speed during an entire shift. Units can be refueled in less than two minutes, minimizing lost productivity. GenDrive hydrogen fuel cells provide companies with a possible greenhouse-gas emissions reduction of up to 72 percent, compared to batteries charged from the grid.
Hessgen, for the first time in history, mixed hydrogen with racing fuel to power a 700-HP Trophy Truck on the rough 500-mile Baja racecourse. By race mile 5, Brian Hess, company founder, had flipped the truck over and into a ditch. With the help of a forklift, #88 was back on course in less than 90 minutes. The hydrogen system located on the top rear section of the truck survived the crash and worked flawlessly. Hessgen says the experience proves the system is safe in an impact-rollover crash and tough enough to meet the demands of everyday road driving. Over 21 hours and 40 minutes later without rest, Hess in his hydrogen-powered truck finished the journey.
KEMA has appointed three new members to its supervisory board. Michiel Boersma has joined as chairman successor, while Peter Terium and Pieter Trienekens are new members. Kees Wiechers stepped down upon the end of his term as chairman, as did Rinse de Jong as member when his term ended.
American Electric Technologies appointed Rick Thompson as v.p. of power services, a newly created position.
Tropos Networks hired Tom Van Denover to fill the newly created position of senior v.p. of worldwide sales
Exide Technologies appointed James R. Bolch as president and CEO, also joining the Exide board of directors. Bolch succeeded Gordon A. Ulsh, who retired. Bolch was senior v.p. and president, industrial technologies sector at Ingersoll Rand Co.
S&C Electric Co. received a Green Industry Business Development Program Grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity for its Chicago testing facility—the Advanced Technology Center (ATC). The ATC is the first industrial building in the city to be Gold Certified by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). The facility was built to achieve two goals: 1) eliminate the need to send products overseas for testing, thereby cutting costs, shortening testing time, and accelerating development and delivery; and 2) demonstrate S&C’s commitment to energy efficiency and overall electric grid improvement. In its first few months of operation, the ATC allowed S&C to qualify a new rating for custom metal-enclosed switchgear, and provided fault interruption testing on S&C’s fault filter electronic power fuse, as well as testing for other new products.
Raytheon was awarded a $12.7 million contract to provide Allegheny Power with a seamless land mobile radio system that will help improve radio frequency coverage and communications reliability. Raytheon’s P25net digital land mobile radio system solution also will improve standardization and interoperability, which will allow line workers to share information and communicate more easily across the company’s 30,000-square-mile service area.
The Control Room Group (CRG), a division of AVI-SPL, was selected by Allegheny Energy to provide design, integration, installation and on-going support of video display solutions for its new transmission headquarters building in Fairmont, W.V. CRG will supply 80 DLP SXGA+ video projection modules, 52 flat-panel LCD monitors and the control-room management suite (CMS) software for advanced visualization in the transmission control room and the incident management room, for operator training and simulation, and employee training rooms. Additional solution components include audio systems and touch panel controls designed for 24x7 operations. The contract also includes traditional audiovisual systems for use in other conference rooms, directors’ offices and the security alarm station monitoring facility.
Staco Energy Products introduced its second generation of StacoVAR fixed capacitors for power factor correction and harmonic compensation. These standard units are available from 2.5 kVAR to 400 kVAR as economical, fixed motor load (ML) type capacitor assemblies. Equipped with fusing and blown-fuse indicator lights as standard, StacoVAR fixed capacitor assemblies are for indoor or outdoor use with voltages from 240 Vac to 600 Vac. These complete assemblies are UL 508A listed, c-UL, and available from stock or with fast delivery times. They are used for improving power factor where induction motors are located, including manufacturing facilities, food and beverage processing, warehousing and distribution centers, water and wastewater treatment plants, and more.
Survalent Technology commissioned a new supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system for Ottawa River Power Corp. The new system is an upgrade from Survalent’s VMS platform to an open-architecture system based on Windows Server 2008. It includes command sequencing high-level programming language, short-term load forecasting and load management.
The Eastern Interconnection States’ Planning Council (EISPC), a coalition of state utility regulators and representatives from Governor’s offices within the Eastern Interconnection received a $14 million grant from the U.S. DOE to form a broad transmission study entity. The funding allows 39 states and D.C., located partially or within the Eastern Interconnection, to formally begin studying potential transmission development. Funding is via the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. EIPSC is one of two such Eastern entities formed. The other involves utilities.