Case Study - How Spinwave Systems' Wireless Mesh Network is Helping Dartmouth College Monitor Energy
When Dartmouth, prompted by soaring fuel costs and concern about CO2 emissions, decided to install a network to collect more timely information on its heating/cooling system, it turned to Spinwave Systems. The college is deploying Spinwave sensors and other wireless networking hardware, linked together by Spinwave's wireless mesh network to give college facilities managers the ability to view energy system operations in near-real-time.
Today ZigBee Alliance, a global ecosystem of companies creating wireless solutions for use in energy management, residential, commercial and consumer electronics applications announced an agreement to collaborate with SunSpec Alliance to define standards for renewable energy and microgrid management using ZigBee Smart Energy Version 2.0. The collaboration between the two Alliances will address the existing gap between the growing use of distributed generation via renewable energy resources and the Smart Grid, in order to take advantage of the energy management efficiencies of the Smart Grid.
Initially, it will produce 30 megawatts of solar modules a year for the US market. But the plant's capacity is expected to expand as Japanese-owned Kyocera seeks to produce one gigawatt (1,000MW) of solar cells worldwide by March 2013. Kyocera's 210-watt and 235W modules are being produced at the San Diego facility, the company's most powerful and efficient solar power products. Tatsumi Maeda, vice president and general manager of Kyocera Corporation's Solar Energy Group, said: "High-quality, high-efficiency solar modules from Kyocera's San Diego plant fulfill the ‘Buy American' provisions enacted by the U.S. government, while meeting the rising demand for renewable energy that has accompanied the current administration's ‘Green New Deal' measures."
From smart home controls to solar powered gas refrigeration, undergraduate HVAC&R students in their senior year are able to gain hands-on experience in their field thanks to the 2010-2011 ASHRAE Undergraduate Senior Project Grant. "Purdue University is designing and building a net zero energy home that will showcase a variety of new technologies for residential construction" Bill Hutzel, faculty advisor of the project, said. The ASHRAE grant will provide the crucial infrastructure for monitoring and controlling the mechanical, electrical, lighting and other systems in the smart house by developing the controls schematic; developing the sequence of operation; developing the control code; installing the controls and sensors; and commissioning the building systems. The smart house will become a multidisciplinary living laboratory for large numbers of university students interested in low energy residential construction.
Student researchers at Northeastern University have designed an apparatus to convert plastic waste into clean energy while minimizing the release of harmful emissions. Self-sustainability is the key to the double-tank combustor design. Plastic waste is first processed in an upper tank through pyrolysis, which converts solid plastic into gas. Next, the gas flows to a lower tank, where it is burned with oxidants to generate heat and steam. The heat sustains the combustor while the steam can be used to generate electric power.
Despite an uneven economic recovery and the lingering effects of the global recession on virtually every industry around the world, Leon (Lee) M. Pierhal, Chief Executive Officer of OPEL Solar, Inc., a leading global supplier of high concentration photovoltaic ("HCPV") solar panels and other solar products, including utility scale ground-based tracker systems and unique light weight rooftop tracker systems, is reporting a sharp uptick in requests for quotes on industrial scale solar power systems in North America and abroad. In commenting on the dramatic growth in quoting on utility scale solar installations, Pierhal also noted an especially sharp and recent focus in the marketplace on solar power installations of at least 1 MW in size.
China is subsidizing alternative- energy cars in five cities to increase their attractiveness for buyers to reduce reliance on fossil fuels and improve air quality. The government will provide as much as 50,000 yuan ($7,320) for purchases of plug-in hybrid models, which run partly on gasoline, and as much as 60,000 yuan for cars powered only by batteries, a statement on the Ministry of Finance's website said today. China, which became the world's biggest car market last year, aims to increase the annual production capacity of alternative-energy vehicles to half a million units by 2011 as part of efforts to cut oil imports and rein in pollution.
Fuel cells are here today, available for purchase and already taking off in early markets such as the telecommunications industry, materials handling equipment, and combined heat-and-power stationary systems.
EcoCAR: The NeXt Challenge is a three-year collegiate student engineering competition that focuses on vehicle integration of advanced propulsion technologies. The competition challenges 16 universities across North America to reduce the environmental impact of vehicles by minimizing the vehicle's fuel consumption, petroleum use and emissions, while maintaining its utility, safety and performance.
The CCF Energy Credits Program facilitates the implementation of scalable and auditable energy efficiencies through education, baseline auditing and practicable product and service applications, all of which result in volume job creation at the shop floor and management levels now and in the future. For business and consumer customers, the benefits are also clear - reduced costs of energy be it water or electricity, with a no cost power efficiency program.
The most common mistake made when sizing battery banks is not having accurate load information. If manufacturer's data is not available for a particular load, steps should be taken to measure actual power use instead of making a guess. Small mistakes can have a big impact, causing the end user to eventually lose power and potentially require a replacement battery bank sooner than expected. Since most battery based renewable energy systems are off-grid and all power will be generated and stored on-site, it's critical that the designer understand the nature of the loads the system is designed to run.
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The Conference is one of North America's top educational opportunities for solar energy professionals offering hundreds of classes and sessions as well as an exhibit hall with around 200 exhibiting companies.
Want an electric vehicle with more than a piddly couple-hundred mile range? Apparently you have to build it yourself and follow in the footsteps of the Japan Electric Vehicle Club, which broke the Guinness World Record last weekend by driving 623.76 miles (just over 1,000km) on a single charge in its customized Daihatsu Mira. The trip took 27.5 hours traveling around what appears to be the famous Tsukuba circuit in Shimotsuma, Japan. The car was powered by 8,320 Sanyo li-ion cells, each weighing about 44 grams, for a grand total of 807lbs -- more than half the weight of a stock Mira. While we're sure Daihatsu helped with this build, it's worth noting that this is not an official project of the company, meaning the 100 mile Nissan Leaf is about as close as you're going to get to this feat for the near future. Source: Engadget
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