Tag: The Grid

Cascading Power Failures

Cascading Power Failures

Cascading Power Failures

04/10/19

“How can a large-scale power outage occur from just a single component failure?”

The modern power grid is a feat of human ingenuity. One of the most interconnected systems in existence, it allows for terawatts of power generated to reach millions of consumers. However, this great interconnection comes with one drawback. If even one component fails, then the additional stress on other parts can cause more failures which can cascade until a completed blackout occurs. These Cascading Power Failures are a utility’s bane and resilience strategies must be developed to counter the probability of these events.

How to Properly Use Distributed Energy Resources for Resilience

How to Properly Use Distributed Energy Resources for Resilience

How to Properly Use Distributed Energy Resources for Resilience

03/18/19

“How should we use distributed energy resources to build resilience?”

Distributed energy resources such as solar and wind energy are shaping up to be the next dominant paradigm in energy. And one of their most touted benefits is the increased resilience that they will bring. However, research has shown that this will only occur if they are deployed in a careful manner. This means that they will need to be planned to provide backup to vulnerable transmission lines, relieve congestion, and be placed under control of grid operators. This is How to Use Distributed Energy Resources for Resilience.

Wholesale Electricity Markets

Wholesale Electricity Markets

Wholesale Electricity Markets

02/23/19

“How do utility companies purchase electricity generation?”

 

Utility companies are responsible for transmitting electricity. However, they do not always own generation facilities. Instead, they may purchase it on a competitive platform known as a wholesale electricity market. This decoupling of electrical generation and transmission can create a multitude of opportunities for Power Purchase Agreements.

How Community Choice Aggregators Can Offer Cleaner Energy at Lower Rates

How Community Choice Aggregators Can Offer Cleaner Energy at Lower Rates

How Community Choice Aggregators Can Offer Cleaner Energy at Lower Rates

02/12/19

How can community-sourced energy be cheaper and greener?

 

There is a revolution brewing in the renewable energy world. While in the past residents and businesses were tied to one electric utility based on their geographic area, organizations known as Community Choice Aggregators are starting to sprout up and challenge this. Community choice aggregators or CCAs are non-profit organizations that procure power generation and deliver it to customers through a utility’s transmission lines. Since these do not operate for investors and only need to pay for energy and staff, they can give their customers better rates than traditional electricity service and focus on particular resources. To illustrate, just look at the CCA San Jose Clean Energy. Even though their energy portfolio is 45% Renewable Energy/80% carbon-free, they sell energy at rates 1% lower than the standard San Francisco Bay Area PG&E service which is 33% Renewable Energy/78% carbon-free. This is How Community Choice Aggregators Can Offer Cleaner Energy at Lower Rates!

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Phasor Measurement Units

Phasor Measurement Units

Phasor Measurement Units

01/21/19

“How can we use sensors to synchronize the grid?”

 

The electric grid is one of the modern technological wonders of the world. However, its dynamism means that it often goes out of sync. To solve this, utilities can place Phasor Measurement Units onto the grid that can estimate the magnitude and phase angle of current or voltage. 

Image credit us.flukecal.com

Superconductors in the Transmission Grid

Superconductors in the Transmission Grid

Superconductors in the Transmission Grid

01/16/19

“How can superconductors be beneficial for the transmission grid?”

 

Losses by electrical resistance are one of the largest contributors to inefficiency in the power grid system. However, if the normal wiring materials were replaced by superconductive materials which lack any resistance, then this issue would dissipate away.

Image credit http://www.meidensha.com