Engineers from the University of Zaragoza have developed an algorithm that can optimise hybrid electricity generation systems through combined use of renewable energies, such as photovoltaic and wind power, and non-renewables, such as diesel. Their study, published online in the magazine Renewable Energy, envisions storing the energy in batteries or hydrogen tanks.
“The objective of this project is to minimise both the costs and polluting emissions generated by energy production within isolated systems in the electric network, as well as reducing the amounts of unprovided energy (energy required by appliances and devices, but which cannot be supplied)” Rodolfo Dufo, one of the authors of the study and a researcher at the Higher Polytechnic Centre of the University of Zaragoza, told SINC.
The engineers looked at isolated installations, which are provided with electric energy from photovoltaic solar panels, aerogenerators – sometimes known as windmills – and diesel generators, which use electrochemical (normally lead acid) batteries or hydrogen (by means of electrolysers, hydrogen tanks and fuel batteries) for storage. They have also looked into the possibility of redirecting the hydrogen for external uses, such as powering a vehicle, for example. “The optimisation of all these systems is a very complex process, and classic optimisation techniques are not usually appropriate in these cases due to the high computational costs they incur,” said Dufo. (more…)
By Kate Galbraith
Two offshore wind farms proposed along the East Coast are running into some turbulence.
A decision on whether to give an environmental go-ahead to Cape Wind, the controversial Massachusetts wind farm off the coast of Cape Code, could be delayed, reports The Boston Globe.
A Coast Guard review of Cape Wind has been extended at the request of a Minnesota congressman, James Oberstar, who chairs the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. Mr. Oberstar sought further study of how the turbines would affect ship radar. “It remains unclear whether the delay will prevent the Minerals Management Service, the agency responsible for evaluating Cape Wind and awarding its lease, from issuing its final environmental review by the end the year as planned,” The Globe reported in its Green Blog.
A Rhode Island offshore wind-farm proposal has also been unsettled by recent developments, according to Providence Business News — including the unexplained departure of the chief executive of Deepwater Wind, the developer (which also plans to help build a wind farm off New Jersey). Another hitch is the rise of a competing application, by Grays Harbor Ocean Energy. (more…)
By ClimateBiz Staff
NOVI, Mich. — ITC Holdings this week filed paperwork representing the first step in a major new electricity transmission project that will bring renewable energy from wind-rich but low-population areas to regions with high demand, especially major Midwest cities like Chicago and Minneapolis.
ITC’s “Green Power Express” will be able to transmit 12,000 megawatts of power over a network of transmission lines from wind farms in North and South Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa to cities in the Midwest. The project marks a much-needed advance in upgrading the country’s electric infrastructure to accommodate the shift from the hub-and-spoke model developed to deliver energy from centralized power generation plants to the more dispersed and smaller-scale model of renewable energy generation, whether from wind, solar, biomass or other sources.
“The Green Power Express is in many ways the true definition of a ‘smart grid’,” said Joseph L. Welch, the CEO of ITC Holdings. “According to a study by CRA International, efficient movement of up to 12,000 MW of wind power through the Green Power Express would result in a reduction of up to 34 million metric tons in carbon emissions, which is equivalent to the annual emissions of about seven to nine 600 MW coal plants, or nine to eleven million automobiles.” (more…)