Smart Cities: Intelligent Transportation and Smart Grid Standards - Part 1

Standards-based solutions were instrumental in the exponential growth of the Internet. For the Smart City, public electrical infrastructure ecosystem to expand, development, application and worker training of interoperability standards is an important strategic foundation from which to grow. This convergence of intelligent transportation systems with the Smart Grid, is allowing the Smart City concept to gain hold in many areas of the US and around the world.

Investing in Solar Energy Industries in the US

As the technology of renewables advances, and as their track records continue to show stable returns, pension funds will continue to increase their investment in renewables, either through direct investment, infrastructure funds or private equity funds.

Advanced Biogas Thermal Mass Flow Meter Boosts Methane Recovery System Operation

The S.P.M. Mill operators initially tried using Oscillator and Vortex technology flow meters. They found that these flow technologies contain moving parts or orifices and were unable to measure flows accurately at the low flow rate demanded by this digester application.

Residential Solar adds to Property Value

On average, a California solar system will pay for itself within five to 10 years, depending on the size of the system. However, if the system is leased and homeowners put little down upfront, the solar system will begin paying for itself on day one, creating instant savings.

Creating a new eCommerce B2B Global Solar and Renewable Energy Marketplace

The iSolar Exchange online marketplace is designed to create a secure site that connects the entire supply, manufacture, and delivery channels for solar and renewable energy products and services - worldwide. That's all we do - that's all we focus on.

3D Solar Technology Improves Efficiency

In current technology about 30% of the light is reflected back into space. We have created a 3-dimentional structure in the silicon that virtually eliminates reflection by causing the light to bounce around within the structure until it is fully absorbed.

RTI International Develops New Low Cost, High Efficiency Solar Technology

Researchers at RTI International have developed a new solar technology that could make solar energy more affordable, and thus speed-up its market adoption. The RTI solar cells are formed from solutions of semiconductor particles, known as colloidal quantum dots, and can have a power conversion efficiency that is competitive to traditional cells at a fraction of the cost. Solar energy has the potential to be a renewable, carbon-neutral source of electricity but the high cost of photovoltaics – the devices that convert sunlight into electricity – has slowed widespread adoption of this resource. The RTI-developed solar cells were created using low-cost materials and processing techniques that reduce the primary costs of photovoltaic production, including materials, capital infrastructure and energy associated with manufacturing. Preliminary analysis of the material costs of the technology show that it can be produced for less than $20 per square meter—as much as 75 percent less than traditional solar cells.

Vestas in Talks With Mitsubishi on Strategic Pact

Vestas Wind Systems A/S said Tuesday that it is in talks with Japanese industrial conglomerate Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. about a strategic tie-up that could secure the long-term future of the financially troubled Danish wind-turbine maker. Vestas, the world's largest manufacturer of wind turbines, has been struggling with steep losses and a tight financial situation, prompting speculation in the market of a company sale or a dilutive issuance of new shares. The shares jumped 19% Tuesday after news of the Mitsubishi talks, with analysts saying that the project could help the company navigate its way back to profitability. "No matter what the deal contains, it will surely include an injection of capital to Vestas," Alm. Brand Markets analyst Michael Friis Joergensen said. Vestas fell deep in the red in 2011, when massive overcapacity, excessive costs and budget overruns in the development of a new turbine forced it to issue two profit warnings, helping send the share price lower.

Spherical glass solar energy generator

From DesignBoom.com: German born, barcelona-based architect andré broessel has sent us images of his latest development of a spherical glass solar energy generator. the project uses the advantageous strategy of implementing a ball lens and specific geometrical structure to improve energy efficiency by 35%. in contrast to its traditional photo-voltaic 'dual-axis' counterparts, the device incorporates a fully rotational weatherproof natural optical tracking device that is adequate for functioning on inclined surfaces and curtain walls, empowering any building surface. the new solar generating concept has capabilities that concentrate diffused daylight or moonlight for a more effective site context application. Full Article & Images:

Researchers synthesize inorganic nanocrystals that harvest solar energy

One reason that solar energy has not been widely adopted is because light absorbing materials are not durable. Materials that harvest solar radiation for energy often overheat or degrade over time; this reduces their viability to compete with other renewable energy sources like wind or hydroelectric generators. A new video protocol addresses these issues by presenting a synthesis of two inorganic nanocrystals, each of which is more durable than their organic counterparts. The article, published in Journal of Visualized Experiments (JoVE), focuses on the liquid phase synthesis of two nanocrystals that produce hydrogen gas or an electric charge when exposed to light. "The main advantage of this technique is that it allows for direct, all inorganic coupling of the light absorber and the catalyst," says the leading author Dr. Mikhail Zamkov of Bowling Green State University.

Opportunities and challenges for a sustainable energy future

Article in the journal Nature written by Energy Secretary Steven Chu and Arun Majumdar, former director of the Department of Energy's Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy. Access to clean, affordable and reliable energy has been a cornerstone of the world's increasing prosperity and economic growth since the beginning of the industrial revolution. Our use of energy in the twenty–first century must also be sustainable. Solar and water–based energy generation, and engineering of microbes to produce biofuels are a few examples of the alternatives. This Perspective puts these opportunities into a larger context by relating them to a number of aspects in the transportation and electricity generation sectors. It also provides a snapshot of the current energy landscape and discusses several research and development opportunities and pathways that could lead to a prosperous, sustainable and secure energy future for the world. Full Article:

China's Wind-Power Capacity Linked to Grid Up 87%, Xinhua Says

China connected 50.26 gigawatts of wind-generated capacity to the nation’s largest electricity grid as of this year, the official Xinhua News Agency said, citing a statement from China State Grid Corp. Growth in the on-grid wind power capacity was up 87 percent annually over the last six years, Xinhua reported, citing the larger of China’s two transmission operators. Grid-linked capacity will rise to 100 gigawatts by 2015 and 200 gigawatts by 2020, according to the report published yesterday. China, the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases, plans to have at least 15 percent of its energy mix come from non-fossil fuels by 2020. Wind farms are the second-biggest contributor to renewable-energy capacity in the nation after hydropower dams.

The Port of the Future:
The Potential of Fuel Cells to Green Our Nation's Ports

Fuel cells can help resolve many issues facing ports. By deploying this clean and modern technology, ports can reduce pollution and increase operational efficiency. Fuel cells generate electricity using electro-chemical reactions, not combustion, so there are no polluting emissions, only water and heat as by-products.

Algae to Biofuel Technology

Algae converts at a very high efficiency into biocrude, as it has lots of caloric value and happens to have the same molecular structure as petroleum. So out of all the whole biomass sources, algae is probably the most efficiently converted to biocrude.

Impact of EVs on the Grid

While the addition of each Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) to the street is a victory for the environment, their widespread adoption will present another potential challenge to the power distribution system, particularly in urban networks.

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