Vendor Neutral

Fortnightly Magazine - September 2010

Beacon Power delivers flywheel electronics; PPL awards dry sorbent injection contract to United Conveyor.

Energy Services and EVs

Beacon Power Corp. has delivered and put in place the initial flywheel power electronics and associated support equipment as part of the construction of what the company calls the world’s first grid-scale flywheel energy storage plant in Stephentown, N.Y. The systems, consisting of power electronics, cooling and other support equipment housed in specially equipped containers, were lowered onto permanent foundations. After the containerized systems are wired in place, they will be interconnected with Beacon flywheels. Support equipment for a total of 4 MW of energy storage capacity was delivered to the site. Eighty flywheel foundations already have been installed, and the company is delivering and installing 40 flywheels (4 MW) during the third quarter of this year. The 4 MW of storage capacity is expected to be connected and earning revenue from frequency regulation services by the end of the fourth quarter. The balance of the 20-MW plant is expected to be completed and operational by the end of the first quarter 2011.

The University of Michigan solar car crossed the finish line first at the American Solar Challenge Race in Naperville, Ill. The race started in Broken Arrow, Okla., and over the course of six days, the car called Infinium traveled 1,100 miles averaging 40 mph. Seventeen teams from the United States, Canada, Germany and Taiwan competed. In order to keep the car weight down, a primary light-weight component of the car included car battery enclosures designed by StahlinWorldwide. The fiberglass composite material met both weight and rigidity requirements for the vehicle, and the company says the material translates well into uses for renewable power storage.

Customer Systems

Cape Light Compact , an inter-municipal utility serving 21 communities near Cape Cod, Mass., reports that participants in a year-long conservation pilot program reduced daily energy use by 9.3 percent or 2.9 kWh/day. The program deployed the GroundedPower Interactive Customer Engagement System (iCES) integrated with Digi International’s X-Grid to connect consumers’ home energy devices. The Digi X-Grid is an extended grid that enables real-time, IP-based monitoring and control of home energy devices beyond the electric meter. The iCES system delivers customers an interactive application for better understanding of energy use and cost, and tools to allow energy savings. The GroundedPower system enables real-time viewing of energy use and demand, savings metrics in kWh, dollars and CO2 emissions and provides opportunities for customers to sign up for energy saving activities.

Chesapeake Utilities Corp. selected Vertex to install its customer information system (CIS), eCIS+, to establish and implement uniform business processes across all of the organization’s utility operations. Vertex will work with Chesapeake to improve efficiencies and enable the company to deliver more cost-effective customer service. Vertex also will consolidate Chesapeake’s multiple CIS databases, including the existing Vertex e-CIS solution used by affiliated Florida Public Utilities, and upgrade the entire organization to eCIS+.

Energy Trading

The Iberian power market derivatives exchange, Operador do Mercado Ibérico de Energía (OMIP), and Trayport, a provider of exchange