But U.S. Department of Energy spokesman Damien LaVera compared the remaining federally backed solar power projects to “building a hotel and having 100 percent occupancy pre-booked for 20 years before the ground is broken,” the Los Angeles Times reported Saturday.
Jan Smutny-Jones, executive director for the Independent Energy Producers Association trade group, said alternative power projects were “fat political target(s) at this particular time.”
“That’s unfortunate, because the vast majority of projects here in California are actually moving forward and creating jobs,” Smutny-Jones said.
California is home to about 25,000 of the country’s 100,000 solar power jobs. There are also six solar power projects in the state with $7 billion in federal loan guarantees that are doing well, the newspaper reported.
They just aren’t getting the headlines Solyndra has garnered in part because President Barack Obama toured the Solyndra plant as a model of green power initiatives.
The formula that includes federal loan guarantees is also not new for advanced technologies.
“Many of these projects would not get built had it not been for the loan guarantees. With the newer technology, banks are not comfortable lending, so the idea is for the government to step in,” said Brett Prior, a senior analyst with GTM Research in Boston.
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October 17th, 2011 | Posted in Green Energy | Edit | No Comments
A Little Tip That Will Save You some Electricity and Inconvience
In the past I have have had a problem remembering to turn off my electric coffee pot. If there was any coffee left in it, after a while it would stink like burned coffee. I don’t know, maybe some people like that smell. I don’t.
Any way, after a few centuries of smelling the smell, cleaning the burned coffee from the pot and all the other inconviences including, the expense.
That’s right the expense. I haven’t bothered to cost it out as of yet, but I’ll bet that it comes out to several $$$ dollars a month for the wasted electricity.
Quite frankly I got tired of this crap. A few new pots ago I decided to fix the problem. I have several lamp timers at my home, so I took one of them and plugged it into the electrical outlet where I previously plugged in my coffee pot and plugged the coffee pot into the timer outlet. I set the timer off/on switch as close together as possible. This gives sufficient time for the brew.
Because of health reasons, my bride is restricted from caffeine intake, so I brew her a cup of decaffeinated, turn the litttle pot switch off and then I brew myself a cup of leaded. I even use the same filter, I just add the fresh coffee grounds that I like right on top of hers add more water then turn the little switch back on. The timer gives me sufficient time with the on/off as close as possible.
Whenever I make a pot of coffee, I turn on the coffee pot switch then advance the timer until the little light on the pot comes on and at this point, I’m good to go.
Also when the wife wants a cup of tea or if I want a picture of tea, the pot makes a great tea brewing station. I have found that if I don’t drink the tea while it is fresh, the tea will give me an upset stomach. I have been advised that this do to the growth of the bacterria that was present on the tea leaves.
I don’t know about you, but I like these little pieces of information.
October 13th, 2011 | Posted in Repair and Money Saving Tips | Edit | No Comments
Silicon Ink is Spot On
National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Silicon Ink Is Spot On,
NREL Experiments Show
September 28, 2011
Speed and Precision Keys to Large-scale Manufacturing of Solar Cells
When you’re making millions of solar cells a week, the process has to be a combination of precision and speed. Full story.
Ink can cause a mess, but the Silicon Ink developed by Innovalight behaves itself so well that when it is added to a solar cell it doesn’t clump or spill, instead it boosts the cell’s power by a startling, profit-boosting 5 to 7 percent.
Both solar cells and T-shirts can be enhanced with a screen printer, some ink and a squeegee.
But it takes a real special ink to suspend silicon nanoparticles so uniformly that it can lay down the precise microns-thick lines needed to dope the silicon emitter exactly under the front metal contacts. Those contacts make a solar cell work.
Innovalight, a small start-up from Sunnyvale, Calif., came up with an ingenious way to suspend silicon in a solution without the tiny particles glomming onto one another or sinking to the bottom of the container.
But could that Silicon Ink prove useful for solar cells?
Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) proved that the answer is “yes.” And the winners could be the solar cell industry and the environment, because Silicon Ink, when added to the manufacturing process, can make solar cells more efficient and save a large plant hundreds of millions of dollars each year.
NREL and Innovalight shared a coveted R&D 100 award for 2011 for the Silicon Ink technology. Given by R&D 100 Magazine, the R&D 100 awards are referred to in the industry as the “Oscars of Invention.” Silicon Ink’s ability to boost efficiency in such a low-cost way prompts some in the industry to label it “liquid gold.”
Impurities in Silicon Are Key to Making Contacts, Making Electricity
Silicon is the key ingredient in most of the billions of solar cells made each year worldwide.
Dopants or impurities are used to change the conductivity of silicon and to create the internal electric fields that are needed to turn photons into electrons and thus into electricity. One of the great challenges is to distribute the exact concentrations of dopants in precisely the correct locations throughout the device.
Innovalight scored big with Silicon Ink because it found a way to suspend silicon nanoparticles evenly in a solution. Those silicon nanoparticles contain dopant atoms that can be driven into silicon solar cell to form a selective emitter.
What Innovalight’s potential customers and investors wanted to know was whether the ink can deliver high concentrations of dopants to extremely localized regions of the emitter and increase a solar cell’s efficiency.
NREL Senior Scientists Kirstin Alberi and David Young listened to what Innovalight wanted to prove and then suggested some experiments that could help them prove it.
“The question was, ‘can you print this ink in very well defined lines and drive in dopants only in the material underneath the lines to create a well-defined selective emitter,” said Alberi, who began at NREL three years ago as a post-doctorate researcher. If so, the increased concentration of dopants right under the contacts would lower the resistance at the metal contact, while the rest of the cell contained low-doped silicon — and that would mean jumps in efficiency and savings of huge amounts of money.
“On some level, you want the emitter to be highly doped so it makes a better contact with the metal,” Alberi said. “But if it’s too heavily doped elsewhere, that’s bad.”
That’s why a “selective emitter” that is heavily doped only in precise portions of a solar cell is such a promising technology.
The Ink Stays Put, Boosting Efficiency of the Cell
The money question: Can Silicon Ink, using a screen-printing approach, lay down those differently-doped lines without having the ink spread all over the place? If the ink spreads, the spots where silicon is supposed to be lightly doped get the overflow from the spots where silicon is highly doped.
“They needed to prove this to their investors to show that their company was the best at doing this,” Alberi said. “They didn’t know how to go about proving this, and that’s where we were able to help.”
There wasn’t a “Eureka” moment, but the dawning realization that the Silicon Ink was performing exactly as well as Innovalight had hoped was extremely gratifying, Alberi said.
“It was nice seeing that the results were exactly what they hoped they would be,” Alberi said.
The scorecard: Silicon Ink, used in a low-cost screen-printing process, delivered a 1 percentage point absolute increase in the efficiency of the solar cells.
If that doesn’t sound like much, consider that a typical silicon solar cell array in the field may convert 15 percent of the photons that hit it into useable electricity. That 1 percentage point increase actually represents a 7 percent increase in power output for a typical 15 percent -efficient cell — at a cost that is so low that it basically goes unnoticed at large solar-cell manufacturing plants.
“That’s a huge impact for almost nothing,” Richard Mitchell, NREL’s lead investigator on the project, said.
A Very Special Ink, a Very Special Screen and Squeegee
In the manufacturing process, the Silicon Ink spills onto a screen, a squeegee pushes it one way as the silicon wafers pass through, then pushes the ink the other way as new wafers appear below the screen. The Ink only reaches the cell at the precise points where a tiny slit in the screen’s mask lets it get through. The slits are narrower than a human hair.
Every once in a while, a syringe adds some more Silicon Ink to the screen to ensure the spread is even and the liquid doesn’t run out.
The tests proved that the ink stayed put.
Once the silicon and the dopants are where they should be on the unfinished cell, they are heated — not enough to melt them, but just enough to drive the dopants contained within the Silicon Ink into the solar cell.
“Kirstin and the others helped Innovalight prove they can actually get the right kind of selective doping in the areas they need,” Mitchell said. “This is the first technology that showed that exactly where you print is exactly where the cell gets doped — to a precision of a micron.”
NREL, Innovalight Partnered on R&D and Overcoming Barriers
The first NREL/Innovalight partnership was a 2008 cooperative research and development agreement, or CRADA, in which Innovalight paid for the expertise of the scientists at NREL, who in return agreed to keep the proprietary technology secret.
Later, Innovalight won a competitive bid to enroll in NREL’s Photovoltaic Incubator program in which it had to meet stringent deadlines to deliver improvements in its technology in return for the help of NREL scientists in overcoming barriers.
Innovalight eventually worked out the kinks in its process for using Silicon Ink in an ink-jet application. It showed off the technique to potential customers at a demonstration assembly line at its Sunnyvale, Calif., headquarters.
Customers were unfamiliar with ink-jet printing as it applied to solar cells, so manufacturers balked at making the leap. “But they all had screen printing on their production lines already,” Mitchell said. “Adding another screen printer was something their operators would understand.”
So, the goals of the Innovalight/NREL partnerships shifted to proving the reliability of Silicon Ink with screen printing.
Chinese Have Signed on to the Technology, United States May Be Next
The manufacturers that have signed contracts for Silicon Ink — all in China, including JA Solar, Hanwha SolarOne, and Jinko Solar, — are trying the technology on selected assembly lines. If they get the results expected, they’ll likely start using it on all their lines, Mitchell said. If that proves successful, then they might be ready to try Silicon Ink with the ink-jet method, which Innovalight says holds even greater promise to improve cell efficiency and save money.
Last month, DuPont acquired Innovalight, a move that could boost the prospects for American solar-cell manufacturing using the Silicon Ink technology.
The partnership with NREL “absolutely was a positive experience from the beginning,” said Conrad Burke, who founded Innovalight and is now general manager of DuPont Innovalight, which now has 58 employees.
“There are certain capabilities at NREL that companies of our size, or even larger companies, can’t afford to have access to,” Burke said. “It’s a win-win situation where we have access to those resources when we need them. It’s good to have those resources in the United States.”
Learn more about solar energy research at NREL.
Speed and Precision Keys to Large-scale Manufacturing of Solar Cells
When you’re making millions of solar cells a week, the process has to be a combination of precision and speed.
That means there has to be a fast way to deposit lightly-doped silicon here while depositing heavily-doped silicon there.
Innovalight’s ability to make their Silicon Ink emulsion liquid, without having solids clump together or fall to the bottom made their product a potential game-changer.
The aim is to moderately dope the emitter between the front grid lines such that most of the sun’s light is absorbed in the solar cell’s lightly-doped base, while heavy doping in the emitter precisely under the grid lines reduces contact series resistance.
The result is a more efficient solar cell, which means smaller modules can generate the same amount of power. And that means lower costs for the consumer, who can get electricity with a smaller down payment, and lower costs for the manufacturer, who can save hundreds of millions of dollars a year and sharply increase profit.
Dopants Form Negative-Type, Positive-Type Silicon
How does it happen?
The goal is to make a junction where electrons and holes are in equilibrium but where there is a voltage difference that builds in an electric field. To do that requires two different types of silicon, p-type and n-type. Each of the types requires different loads of impurities, or dopants.
The dopants or impurities added to the silicon alter the electrical properties. Adding phosphorous produces n-type silicon, the “n” standing for free negative electrons. Adding boron produces p-type silicon, which produces positive charges or holes. The opposite charges — n-type electrons and p-type holes — carry the charge in a solar cell when they come into contact at a junction.
To prove that Silicon Ink can accomplish that delicate task of depositing differentiated impurities, Innovalight officials turned to the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
“They told us what they wanted to prove, so we thought about it and proposed some experiments,” NREL Senior Scientist Kirstin Alberi said.
After Innovalight prepared the samples for the experiments, NREL’s experts on measurements and characterizations got involved, as did specialists in scanning capacitance, contrast imaging, and microscopy.
Huge Electron Microscopes Up to the Task
Helio Moutinho, Bob Reedy, Yanfa Yan, Kim Jones, and Manuel Romero started analyzing with huge specialized electron microscopes.
Romero subjected the samples to contrast imaging and, with the aid of an electron microscope, determined both the depths of the dopants and how far they spread laterally.
Using a process called secondary ion mass spectrometry, NREL’s scientists sputtered off the atoms and analyzed the mass of elements to determine their exact composition. Then, applying spatially resolved measurement techniques, they created a map to tell them where precisely the elements lie on the sample.
They proved that Silicon Ink can be used to lay down p and n type silicon on the back of a silicon wafer, eliminating the need to have contacts on the front of the wafer.
“They developed the ability to get silicon particles doped in the special way they wanted for p type and n type. They could adjust the size of the silicon particle,” said Richard Mitchell, NREL’s lead investigator on the project.
The contact and emitter design enhancements achieved with Silicon Ink are optimized such that each cell gains a percentage point in efficiency — bumping up from converting, say, 16 percent of the photons into electricity to 17 percent. That’s actually a 6 to 7 percent increase in overall efficiency.
The proofs from the tests were enough to attract DuPont, one of the largest corporations in the world, which acquired Innovalight in August.
“It’s always good when an industrial capability collects the interest of large corporate financing,” Mitchell said. “They certainly did their due diligence, before they decided that this was a good technology to buy.”
Content Last Updated: September 14, 2011
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October 9th, 2011 | Posted in Green Energy | Edit | No Comments Solar Report Update Sept. 26, 2011 Heighlights from Mercon Capital, Mercon Report
Solar solutions take shape at Solar Power International (SPI ’11), October 17-20, 2011.
North America’s largest, most comprehensive B2B solar power trade show and conference opens up exciting, new
opportunities in the emerging market of Dallas, Texas.
Widely regarded as the can’t-miss event for the solar industry, SPI draws nearly 24,000 professionals from 125+
countries. Now, before the boom, is the time to make connections in Texas and throughout the solar industry. Build
your network in SPI’s general sessions, conference sessions, receptions and business partnering appointments or as you explore the dynamic exhibit floor.
Electricity is the world’s fastest-growing form of end-use energy consumption in the Reference case, as it has been for the last several decades. Net electricity generation worldwide rises by 2.3% per year on average from 2008 to 2035. Renewables are the fastest growing source of new electricity generation, increasing by 3.0 % and outpacing the average annual increases for natural gas (2.6%), nuclear power (2.4%), and coal (1.9%).
In general, in OECD countries, where electricity markets are well established and consumption patterns are mature, the growth of electricity demand is slower than in non-OECD countries, where a large amount of potential demand remains unmet. Total net electricity generation in non-OECD countries increases by an average of 3.3 percent per year in the Reference case, led by non-OECD Asia (including China and India), where annual increases average 4.0 percent from 2008 to 2035. In contrast, net generation among OECD nations grows by an average of 1.2% per year from 2008 to 2035.
China and India account for half of the projected increase in world energy use over the next 25 years. China alone, which only recently became the world’s top energy consumer, is projected to use 68% more energy than the United States by 2035.” said Acting EIA Administrator Howard.
Some key findings:
Natural gas is the second fastest growing generation source, increasing by 2.6 percent per year. An increase in unconventional natural gas resources, particularly in North America but elsewhere as well, helps keep global markets well supplied and prices competitive. Future generation from renewables, natural gas, and to a lesser extent nuclear power largely displaces coal-fired generation , although coal remains the largest source of world electricity through 2035. tMore than 82 percent of the increase in renewable generation is in the form of hydroelectric power and wind power.
China and India lead the growth in world demand for energy in the future:
The economies of China and India were among those least affected by the worldwide recession. They continue to lead world economic growth and energy demand growth in the Reference case. In 2008, China and India combined accounted for 21 percent of total world energy consumption.
View Full Report: International Energy outlook 2011-(http://budurl.com/MercomlEO2011)
International Energy Outlook 2011 – (http://budurl.com/MercomIEO2011)
With strong economic growth in both countries over the projection period, their combined energy use more than doubles by 2035, when they account for 31 percent of world energy use in the IEO2011 Reference case. In 2035, China’s energy demand is 68 percent higher than U.S. energy demand. Source: EIA Excerpts from the report – Highlights:
Overview – Electricity:
World net electricity generation increases by 84 percent in the IEO2011 Reference case,
from 19.1 trillion kilowatthours in 2008 to 25.5 trillion kilowatthours in 2020 and 35.2 trillion kilowatthours in 2035. Although the 2008-2009 global economic recession slowed the rate of growth in electricity use in 2008 and resulted in negligible change in electricity use in 2009, demand returned in 2010, led by strong recoveries in non-OECD economies. Source: EIA EIA projects world energy use to increase 53 percent by 2035;
Renewable energy is projected to be the fastest growing source of primary energy over the next 25 years, but fossil fuels remain the dominant source of energy: Renewable energy consumption increases by 2.8 percent per year and the renewable share of total energy use increases from 10 percent in 2008 to 15 percent in 2035 in the Reference case.
Fossil fuels, however, continue to supply much of the energy used worldwide throughout the projection, and still account for 78 percent of world energy use in 2035 While the Reference case projections reflect current laws and policies as of the start of
2011, past experience suggests that renewable energy deployment is often significantly affected by policy changes. Other report highlights include:
In many parts of the world, concerns about security of energy supplies and the environmental consequences of greenhouse gas emissions have spurred government policies that support a projected increase in renewable energy sources. As a result, renewable energy sources are the fastest growing sources of electricity generation in the IEO2011 Reference case at 3.1 percent per year from 2008 to 2035.
The contribution of wind energy, in particular, has grown swiftly over the past decade, from 18 gigawatts of net installed capacity at the end of 2000 to 121 gigawatts at the end of 2008 a trend that continues into the future. Of the 4.6 trillion kilowatthours of new renewable generation added over the projection period, 2.5 trillion kilowatthours (55 percent) is attributed to hydroelectric power and 1.3 trillion kilowatthours (27percent) to wind.
The majority of the hydroelectric growth (85 percent) occurs in the non-OECD countries, while a slight majority of wind generation growth (58 percent) occurs in the OECD. High construction costs can make the total cost to build and operate renewable generators higher than those for conventional plants. The intermittence of wind and solar, in particular, can further hinder the economic competitiveness of those resources, as they are not operator-controlled and are not necessarily available when they would be of greatest value to the system.
However, improving battery storage technology and dispersing wind and solar generating facilities over wide geographic areas could mitigate many of the problems associated with intermittency over the projection period.
World energy demand and economic outlook: Outlook for world energy consumption by source – The use of all energy sources increases over the time horizon of the IEO2011
Renewables are the fastest-growing source of world energy, with consumption increasing by 2.8 percent per year. Relatively high projected oil prices, as well as concern about the environmental impacts of fossil fuel use and strong government incentives for increasing the use of renewable energy in many countries around the world, improve the prospects for renewable energy sources worldwide in the outlook.
October 2nd, 2011 | Posted in Solar Helps Drive U.S.Economy Up | Edit | No Comments
Sept. 30, 2011, Las Vegas Review Journal, To the editor
J. C. Watts’ Sunday column on the failed company Solyndra (“The lesson of Solyndra fiasco”) misrepresents the facts of the solar industry. One company’s inability to survive in a highly competitive global market is not indicative of the health of the U.S. solar industry.
The truth is the U.S. solar energy industry is booming. In the past year, U.S. solar grew by 69%, making it one of the fastest-growing sectors in the economy. The industry comprises 5,000 companies across every state in the country and employs more than 100,000 Americans–double the number of employees from just two years ago.
Even more telling, in 2010, the U.S. solar industry was a $2 billion net exporter of solar products–even to China.
Solyndra was an outlier in an otherwise thriving industry. The U.S. solar energy industry is one of few sectors today creating jobs and working to drive economic growth in America.
P.S. I have read comment by Doomsayers that say things like: That job is costing the American taxpayers $20 million per permanent job. They are full of feces. The fact is , the U.S. government is not issuing a grant, they are only guaranteeing the repayment of the loan. As per the information in the above article, the U.S. solar industry is going very strong and is probably one of the safest bets that our overwhelmed government can make.
Til next time
September 30th, 2011 | Posted in Solar Helps Drive U.S.Economy Up | Edit | No Comments
ELECTRICAL TIPS APPENDED
As aforementioned, I was positive that my friend’s problem with his lights was the GFCI. He called and told me that the correction didn’t work. I decided to go over to his home and check that he did the testing right. He did. Now what. I asked for and he promptly gave me a new light bulb. I screwed the bulb into the socket and wow! It didn’t work. Rather than start testing for other problems, I took the new light bulb into the house and screwed it into a known working socket. The bulb was no good. I took the hot bulb that I had removed from the lamp and screwed it into the test socket. Viola! It worked. This was crazy, he had 4 or 5 burned out bulbs. I explained to him, the house is 10 years old. No bulbs have ever been replaced.
His next problem was that he didn’t have any replacement bulbs. I very strongly encouraged him to buy the CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) bulbs, reason being, they will repay the cost of the bulb in energy savings in the first year, at least a dollar a month. I also explained to him that the old bulbs get really hot and warm the surrounding space, therefore, making the air conditioner work harder, also where a 60 watt bulb uses 60 watts, the CFL with the same lumens only use 23 watts.
Just thought you might like to know. Always check the simplest thing first. Just because it is new doesn’t mean that it is good. For more information about energy savings, go to http://greenenergydiy.info .
Until next time.
PS: If you have an idea to share or if you want specific information, let me know, either with the comment area or at the top of page fill out the opt-in form and you will be provided my email address
September 25th, 2011 | Posted in Repair and Money Saving Tips | Edit | No Comments
Today a friend of mine called me, all frustrated and didn’t queit know how to handel a situation. He told me that all the exterior lights and the garage electrical was out and he had reset all the circuit breakers in the main breaker box.
I explained to him the fix for the problem, we have a slight language barrier, so I agreed to go to his house and help him with the repair. I’m positive that it will be the GFCI in his garage.
Quiet simply, the problem is the GFCI circuit protector probably located near one of the lights or circuit that does not work. I said probably near because when the wiring is done by an electrical contractor, the builder or architech doesn’t specify where the GFCI’s should be physically located, so the electrical contractor places them in the most convient place for him just to keep them as the first device in the specific circuit involved is all that is required as to the electrical code. On one occasion I had an upstairs
bathroom that had no lights. The GFCI for this one was located in the garage.
As stated in my profile, I have been repairing houses since around 1967, and have been a licensed electrical contractor. If you or a friend fine yourself with an unexplainable problem, chances are that I have repaired such a problem. For information, please reach me through the comments section of this blog or feel free to email me at this email address: Sales@GlenStandridge.com .
September 23rd, 2011 | Posted in Repair and Money Saving Tips | Edit | No Comments
California’s on a Roll
Mercom’s Solar Report for the week of September 19, 2011, Mercom Capital
U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu today announced the Energy Department finalized a $1.2 billion loan guarantee to Mojave Solar LLC for the development of
the Mojave Solar Project (MSP). When complete, the 250MW solar generation project located in San Bernardino County, California will increase the nation’s
currently installed concentrating solar power (CSP) capacity by approximately 50 percent.
Under the bill, projects that use less than 75 acre-feet of water/year, enough for about 500 homes, will qualify for the exclusion, which will eliminate about six
months of paperwork, according to data compiled by Rubio’s office. BrightSource said its Ivanpah plant will consume about 100 acre-feet of water yearly. The
Oakland, based company said April 22 it plans to raise as much as $250M through an initial share sale to fund the construction of additional thermal plants.
Intentionally Excluded: Solar-thermal plants consume more water than photovoltaic, and were intentionally left out of the legislation, said California Senator
Michael Rubio, a Democrat from East Bakersfield who wrote the bill. “We wanted to start with two areas known to not use a lot of water,” he said in an
interview. The changes may prompt some developers to eschew solar- thermal projects, Rubio said.
California Governor Jerry Brown is expected to sign a bill that simplifies the permitting process for solar photovoltaic projects and may prompt developers to
reconsider solar-thermal plants, which aren’t included in the legislation. According to Senate Bill 267, which Brown has until Nov. 9 to sign, photovoltaic
projects will no longer be required to demonstrate adequate water supplies. Wind farms are also included in the bill.
“There’s the potential for more of these solar thermal plants to go PV,” said Allan Marks, a project finance attorney at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy in Los
Angeles. “The operating costs of PV are less, so lenders worry less about the downside risk.”A notable exception is BrightSource Energy, which received
$1.6B in U.S. Energy Dept. loan guarantees to build a 392MW solar-thermal plant. When completed in 2013, it may be the world’s largest.
“This particular bill will be another tool to assess what’s economical for the state.” Brown supports renewable energy in California, he said, and will likely sign
the legislation, which reached his desk on Sept. 6 after passing the Assembly and Senate with veto-proof majorities. The governor’s office doesn’t comment on
pending legislation, spokesman Evan Westrup said today.
FirstEnergy Ohio Utilities Launch Request for Proposal for 10-Year Renewable Energy Credits and
Solar Renewable Energy Credits Generated in Ohio
Baja Sun Energy Plans At Least $500 Million Solar Investment for Mexico
Falling photovoltaic prices have made them less expensive than solar-thermal systems, which focus the sun’s rays to create steam that drives a turbine and
generates electricity. Eliminating the paperwork will shave as much as six months from the approval process. Three California solar-thermal projects have
switched to photovoltaic panels, which convert sunlight into electricity, and more may follow suit.
The North American solar market may grow significantly over the next 10 years, Baja California Governor Jose Guadalupe Osuna Millan said in the statement.
The company will open a sales office in San Diego. Arima EcoEnergy will outfit the factory for production of cells, modules and dual-axis tracking systems,
according to the statement. There are 335 solar projects with a combined capacity of 1.45GW currently installed in North America and the Caribbean,
according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance data sets. That’s up from 1.16GW at the end of 2010, according to the data. Source: Bloomberg, Sep 13
FirstEnergy Corp. announced that a Request for Proposal (RFP) will be conducted to secure 10-year Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) and Solar Renewable
Energy Credits (SRECs) for customers of its Ohio utilities – Ohio Edison, Cleveland Electric Illuminating and Toledo Edison – to help meet the renewable
energy benchmarks established under Ohio’s energy law.
California currently accounts for 61% of the total US project pipeline, stimulated by the state’s aggressive 33%
Renewable Portfolio Standard target, and benefiting from the recent trend of solar projects reallocated from concentrated solar power to PV. The top six state pipelines in megawatt terms are California, Arizona, Nevada,
Texas, New Jersey, and New Mexico; in total, 44 states now contribute to the pipeline.
Utility-driven project activity is now evident across 35 states, while other non-residential projects below 1 MW remain
an important segment of the market, accounting for 771 projects being monitored. The fast-developing non-residential
segment has created an important and growing opportunity for project developers, engineering, procurement and
construction (EPC) companies. The top 12 project developers currently account for 51% of the total pipeline.
No energy or capacity will be purchased under the RFP. The number of individual bidders is not limited. Participants must meet and maintain specific credit and
security qualifications, and must be able to prove their RECs and/or SRECs generating facilities are certified or in the process of becoming certified by the
State of Ohio. Source: FirstEnergy, Sep 13
“Utility expectations for improved installed pricing measured either in per watt peak or kilowatt hour have vastly increased over the past quarter,” said Craig
Stevens, President, Solarbuzz. “The result is more RFPs and an acceleration of PV orders.” For those projects in the pipeline that have selected their module
suppliers, the top three suppliers in MW terms are First Solar, SunPower Corporation, and Suntech Power.
California Bill Favors Solar Panels, Thermal Left Out in Cold
Solar Module Price Cuts Stimulate Massive Growth in US Photovoltaic Project Pipeline
US non-residential pipeline has increased to 24 GW
The collapse in US factory-gate module prices over the past four months is only now starting to impact utility project prices, much more than system sizes
below one MW. One-fifth of the installed system prices above one MW are now $3.75/watt STC DC (Standard Test Conditions, Direct Current) or below.
24 GW PV Pipeline Share by State
Baja Sun Energy SRL said it will invest more than $500 million in a solar-panel factory and energy farm in Baja California that will sell power on both sides of
the Mexico-U.S. border. The Mexicali, Mexico-based company will start building its facility this year and plans to make panels capable of 100 megawatts
annually and a 10-megawatt solar facility that will expand to 150 megawatts, according to a statement yesterday. Mexican employees will be trained by Arima EcoEnergy, a New Taipei City, Taiwan, manufacturer of concentrated photovoltaic module systems, Baja Sun said in the statement.
Switching to Photovoltaic: Other developers are backing away from the technology, which is sometimes called concentrated solar. Germany’s Solar
Millennium AG (S2M), which uses solar-thermal technology, said Aug. 18 it will use photovoltaic panels at the first 500-megawatt phase of a planned 1,000-
megawatt plant near Blythe, California.
September 21st, 2011 | Posted in Cali Will Have Over 50% of Nations Solar Energy | Edit | No Comments
If Into Green Wind Energy, YOU WILL ENJOY THIS READ
While reading this, It reminded me of a horse race. Have a look, see if you can catch on.
The granting of patents by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) is often cited as a measure of the inventive activity and evidence of the effectiveness of research & development investments. Granted solar patents (122) continued to top the remaining components of the CEPGI, and in particular its closest competitor, wind (113), by 9. Wind was up 27 over the first quarter and up 58 over the second quarter of 2010. Solar patents were down 16
compared to the 1st quarter while up 46 relative to a year prior. Japan was the first quarter leader among non-U.S. holders of U.S. clean energy patents and the individual U.S. states with 114, down 17 from the 1st quarter and down 7 from the same period in 2010, to again claim the geographical clean energy patent crown.
EIB Studies 450 Million-Euro (~$612M) Loan for Offshore Wind in Germany California was in second place for the third consecutive quarter at 65 clean energy patents, up 6 over the second quarter and up 16 compared to a year prior, leading new third place finisher New York which leapfrogged Michigan due to its largest quarterly finish ever at 52 granted clean energy patents, up 17 over the 1st quarter and up 30 over a year prior. Korea followed with 41 patents matching last quarter’s total and up 4 over the same quarter in 2010. Michigan fell to 5th place, down 14 from the previous result and up two over last year’s.
Denmark (26) and Germany (29) trailed with Germany up 5 over last quarter and tieing the results of a year ago while Denmark was up 9 over last quarter and 17 over last year’s second quarter. (Others having significant clean energy patent totals were Massachusetts (13) with a total identical to that of the first quarter, while Canada and Colorado had 9 and Connecticut had 7 (identical to the last quarter). Source: CEPGI, Sep 13
Germany will overtake the UK as the world leader in offshore wind generated power as early as 2015, according to new research. As part of a detailed investigation into power cable installation in the offshore wind industry, technology and consultancy company Enventi claim its analysis shows current UK Government policy is stalling offshore wind development.
The findings arise from research into supply contracts awarded to submarine power cable manufacturers which shows that out of 2,400km of wind farm related power cables currently on order, only around 13% or just over 300km relate to planned UK wind farm developments compared to almost 2,000km ordered for
According to Enventi, such evidence confirms that uncertainty linked to planned Government reforms is creating a delay between projects currently in construction and those already consented. “Despite what the Government has said about transitional measures protecting investment, it appears that uncertainty arising from Electricity Market Reform (EMR) is preventing consented projects achieving financial close and proceeding to construction.
“In a tight supply chain, as we believe is likely, this hiatus in the UK will be a crucial factor in the race to install the next phase of offshore wind farms in North-Western Europe. Germany is already well advanced in the installation of an integrated High-Voltage Direct-Current (HVDC) network that will allow ‘clusters’ of offshore wind farms to be developed and it is likely that this groundwork will allow Germany to surpass the UK as the World leader in installed offshore wind capacity sometime between 2015 & 2020”. Source: Offshore Wind, Sep 12
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September 16th, 2011 | Posted in Reads Like a Horse Race | Edit | No Comments
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NEVADA The Saudi Arabia of Renewable Energy (Harry Reid)
‘This is some great information from the Clean Energy Vehicle Show Held in Las Vegas Early September, 2011′
Clean EnergyVehicles Show
By STAN HANEL PLUGGED IN
Posted: Sep. 9, 2011 | 2:02 a.m.
During the last four years, Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., has joined with Jon Podesta, former chief of staff under President Bill Clinton’s administration, to organize a National Clean Energy Summit each summer in Las Vegas. Sen. Reid has often described
Nevada as “the Saudi Arabia of renewable energy” because of the state’s abundant resources of sun, wind and underground hot springs that can potentially be converted into electric power. For 75 years, Hoover Dam has housed powerful generators that convert the flowing energy of the Colorado River into more than 2 billion watts of clean, renewable hydroelectric power every day. This abundant supply of electricity meets the needs of 1.5 million homes. However, much of that energy is exported to neighboring states.
By contrast, Nevada imports about 99 percent of the oil, diesel fuel and gasoline its residents use for transportation every day. This year, National Clean Energy Summit 4.0: The Future of Energy began Aug. 29 at Aria in CityCenter on the Strip. An Alternative Fuel Vehicle Showcase highlighted clean-energy vehicles that were powered by electricity, fuel cells and natural gas.
The electric-car industry exhibited multiple production vehicles this year, including a Nissan Leaf, Chevy Volt, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, a Ford Transit Connect compact van conversion from Azure Dynamics, a CODA electric sedan, and two utility vehicles from Xtreme Green Products Inc.
Entrepreneurs Neil and Claire Roth have been building their Xtreme Green electric vehicles in North Las Vegas for several years. Their company specializes in rugged utility terrain vehicles for off-road use by security and maintenance personnel. They have also designed a single-person police mobility vehicle with flashing emergency lights that attracted a lot of attention during the showcase.
A second Ford Transit Connect compact van at the exhibit had been converted to run on a tank of compressed natural gas, a fossil fuel that is found much more abundantly within U.S. borders than crude oil. Natural methane gas can be compressed to 3,600 pounds per square inch into a holding tank in the rear compartment of the van. The fuel can substitute for gasoline in the vehicle’s internal combustion engine, while also burning more cleanly and providing a range of 330 miles between fill-ups. Toyota displayed a prototype fuel cell hybrid vehicle that runs on hydrogen gas stored in a high-pressure tank. While driving, the hydrogen is mixed with ambient oxygen pulled out of the air by a compressor. The two sets of atoms are catalyzed inside the fuel cell to create electricity while also emitting H2O as water vapor from its exhaust pipe. The electricity from the fuel cell can directly drive the electric motor on the Toyota FCHV, while also recharging a battery pack that can add extra electric boost power to the same motor during periods of acceleration. Toyota representatives affirmed that the company plans to bring this vehicle into production during 2015.
MGM Resorts International, under President and CEO Jim Murren, has been busy implementing clean-energy applications at the Aria and other parts of the CityCenter complex, qualifying the site to achieve six Gold rating awards under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program of the U.S. Green Building Council.
The company recently installed two electric car public charging stations within the valet parking facility at the entrance to The Shoppes at Mandalay Place, located between Mandalay Bay and the Luxor pyramid. The MGM CityCenter limousine fleet also runs on compressed natural gas rather than gasoline.
On day two of the Clean Energy Summit 4.0, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden emphasized the need to continue seeding technology development programs in the clean-energy sector, especially during difficult times of turmoil and economic uncertainty. Otherwise, the U.S. could lose its technology leadership to China and Germany, two countries that are already pulling ahead in exporting renewable energy technologies to the rest of the world.
Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval participated in a panel that included California Gov. Jerry Brown and Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire.
During the recent 2011 Nevada legislative session, Assembly Bill 511 was successfully passed into law and signed by Gov. Sandoval in June. The new law includes guidelines for the state department of motor vehicles to develop alternative-fuel vehicle frastructure. It also authorizes the DMV to create rules for autonomous vehicles to travel on designated highways. Nevada is the first state in the nation to allow driverless vehicles on public roads.
California Gov. Brown emphasized that his state is pushing hard to promote clean-energy resources, startup businesses and alternative-fuel transportation. Recent legislation during spring 2011 expanded a mandate for California utilities to purchase
renewable-energy resources for the state’s electrical grid, increasing the existing goal of 20 percent by 2020 to now achieve 33 percent by the same year, while continuing to serve a growing population of 39 million residents. California is also once again pushing zero-emission vehicle mandates within the state to encourage the development of a clean-energy automotive industry there.
Washington and Oregon have encouraged early adoption of electric vehicles and recharging infrastructure within their states. An “international green corridor” has been initiated along the West Coast on Interstate Highway 5 that will build out a network of electric-vehicle recharging stations from Vancouver, British Columbia, through Washington, Oregon, California and into Mexico.
U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus and Dr. Dorothy Robyn of the Department of Defense both emphasized the military benefits of using alternative-fuel vehicles for transportation, with a low detection footprint, to give strategic advantage to U.S. forces in the field.
According to the Navy Secretary, “For every 50 convoys in Afghanistan, we have lost one Marine.”
Mabus has set a goal for the Navy to derive half of its fuel from nonfossil sources by 2020. Domestic military bases can also benefit by retrofitting existing buildings to make them more efficient and adopt alternative-fuel fleet vehicles that are powered by
independent renewable-energy power sources.
Robyn noted that this effort by the Department of Defense to provide a huge military market for energy-efficient technologies and alternative-fuel vehicles can also help these industries grow within the private sector in order to eventually bring down costs to the general public.
For more information about the National Clean Energy Summit 4.0, visit the organization’s website at www.cleanenergysummit.org.
To read the text of Nevada Assembly Bill 511 that became state law last June, visit www.leg.state.nv.us/Session/76th2011/Bills/AB/AB511.pdf.
Stan Hanel has worked in the electronics industry for more than 30 years and is a long-time member of the Electric Auto Association and the Las Vegas Electric Vehicle Association. Hanel writes and edits for EAA’s “Current Events” and LVEVA’s “Watts Happening” newsletters. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pasted from <http://www.lvrj.com/drive/clean-energy-vehicles-showcased-129516088.html>
September 15th, 2011 | Posted in Uncategorized | Edit | No Comments
SOLAR ENERGY IS FREE FOR THE TAKING
Here in Nevada you can visit CleanEnergyProjectNV.org
to find out how you can join the fight for energy independence. Be sure to
check out their Home EnergyEfficiency Tips section, it’s very well done. To actually get it done,contact HomeFreeNevada.org. Their program provides all the resources you’ll need to help you declare you rindependence by reducing or eliminating your utility bills. There are even financing options that can cover the costs with the energy you’ll save.
Declare your independence! Let freedom ring! There’s no better way to nurture the human spirit.
Pasted from <http://greendream.biz/2011/06/celebrate-independence/#more-1465>
By STEVE RYPKA
Posted: Sep. 8, 2011 | 2:00
Last week’s National Clean
Energy Summit provided a partial snapshot of the status of our nation’s shift
toward clean energy. It featured a wide range of presentations representing
green building, military, commerce, transportation, utilities, manufacturing
and labor interests.
The message was strong and clear: Renewable energy along with a vast array of innovative technologies are here and vital to our future. On the other hand, we’re in a race against ourselves, pitting the benefits of national, energy and climate security against powerful vested interests fighting to maintain the status quo.
The rest of the picture was provided on the other side of the country by another event promoting a clean energy future. In the largest environmental demonstration in a generation, morethan 1,250 people were arrested during two weeks of peaceful acts of civil disobedience at the White House. They also delivered petitions and letters of
support signed by more than 600,000 additional Americans.
Their message was equally strong and clear: We must avoid tapping into the largest pool of dirty carbon on the planet, stop the Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline and take the clean energy path. You can visit www.tarsandsaction.org to learn more about this vital issue.
So the complete picture seems to be that on one hand, government, military and industry say they are deeply supporting the development of clean energy. On the other hand American citizens are demonstrating and demanding clean energy. What’s wrong with this picture?
We are deceiving ourselves. We do not “pay the truth” when it comes to
fossil fuels. The truth is that fossil fuels exact a high price on our health,
the environment and our national security (not to mention they are nonrenewable
and irreplaceable) but these costs are not reflected in the price of the
product. We then use this artificially low price to measure the relative cost
of clean energy. No wonder we’re in a quandary. The dishonesty ingrained in our economic system must be addressed. It is what spawns ecocidal projects like the tar sands and mountaintop destruction in the first place. It does not allow economic decisions that favor our best interests, overall lowest real costs and the greatest benefit for all. In a truly free market, why would it be anything else?
The best solution I’ve seen to bring honesty to the energy economy has been offered by Dr. James Hansen, one of our nation’s top climate scientists. It is called Fee and Dividend.
We begin paying a more truthful price for carbon, implementing an across-the-board flat fee on all fossil fuels at the point of entry in the market (domestic mine or port of entry). A rising rate of $10 per ton of carbon dioxide per year will yield a 30 percent
reduction in U.S. emissions (the equivalent of 13 Keystone XL pipelines).
That’s the fee part.
In 10 years, this would be the equivalent of $1 per gallon of gasoline. Now for the dividend: 100 percent of the collected carbon fees are distributed to the public electronically to bank accounts or debit cards. By year 10, the fees collected from fossil fuel companies would exceed $500 billion per year, providing $2,000 to $3,000 per
legal adult resident in the country, offsetting the higher costs of goods and
services resulting from the fee.
There are no strings attached, so people are free to decide how to spend it. For those driving large SUVs the dividend would offset the rising cost of their carbon consumption. However, many others will choose to invest that dividend in energy efficiency for homes, appliances or vehicles. Those with the most efficient carbon budget reap the greatest rewards.
This simple approach does not grow government, is revenue-neutral and makes use of market principles. There are no new taxes and the government does not attempt to pick winners via tax breaks. It is transparent and leaves energy decisions in the hands of the people. Businesses (including energy companies) who choose to innovate by
reducing their carbon footprint will gain a competitive advantage.
We are all responsible for the results we create. I echo the words of an eloquent Native American who spoke recently at the White House demonstrations: “We can set a standard for everybody else to follow. Today we act. We are taking back our future.”
Steve Rypka is a green living consultant and president of GreenDream Enterprises, a company committed to helping people live lighter on the planet. For more information
and links to additional resources relating to this column, or to reach Steve,
please visit www.greendream.biz.
Pasted from <http://www.lvrj.com/home_and_garden/summit-provided-partial-view-of-clean-energy-use-129439903.html>
September 14th, 2011 | Posted in Uncategorized | Edit | No Comments