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Largest Utility Energy Storage Purchase in History Announced in California

November 5, 2014 in Environment, EV News, Greentech, Large Energy Storage

Southern California Edison Names Suppliers for 261 MW of Energy Storage Projects Comprising Multiple Applications, Technologies and Services

California Governor Brown Photo courtesy of State of California. Largest Utility Energy Storage Purchase in History Announced in California

California Governor Brown
Photo courtesy of State of California.
Largest Utility Energy Storage Purchase in History Announced in California

November 5, 2014 – Southern California Edison (SCE) today announced the selected suppliers and projects for the largest grid-connected energy storage purchase in U.S. history – more than five times greater than the utility’s minimum energy storage procurement authorization of 50 MW, per California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) ruling. Pending approval of the projects by the CPUC, SCE will purchase 261 MW of energy storage resources.

The California Energy Storage Alliance (CESA), a membership-based advocacy group committed to advancing the role of energy storage in the electric power sector, hailed the decision as another significant step in the commercialization of storage on the power grid – and California’s leading role in that power market transition.

“This is a monumental decision – arrived at after a team of SCE experts studied more than 1,800 offers for various storage solutions, as well as other preferred resources and traditional generation,” said Janice Lin, Executive Director of CESA. “The fact that SCE far exceeded the minimum amount of energy storage they were ordered to purchase after comparing multiple solutions head to head, demonstrates that energy storage can be competitive with other preferred resources on both performance and value, and that it’s now an integral part of the utility planning tool kit in California.”

This procurement effort also marks the first time SCE has contracted with energy storage projects through a competitive solicitation. Once deployed, the systems will provide a number of services to SCE’s power grid, including ensuring adequate available electrical capacity to meet peak demand.

The companies named to provide storage systems and the amounts are:
• NRG Energy        0.5 MW

• Ice Energy Holdings, Inc.    25.6 MW

• Advanced Microgrid Solutions    50.0 MW

• Stem       85.0 MW

• AES Energy Storage  100.0 MW

“This solicitation is the first time that such a wide range of new diverse resources were directly competing in the purchasing process,” said Colin Cushnie, SCE vice president, Energy Procurement & Management. “No single energy source can give us everything we need all of the time, particularly with our emphasis to use environmentally clean resources. To provide for flexibility, we need to accommodate a mix of energy resources.”

California utilities leading the way With clear leadership and momentum, California utilities are proving the value of energy storage in various applications from transmission-connected to customer-sited systems. There are currently 112 operational energy storage projects in California, according the U.S. Department of Energy’s Global Energy Storage Database (www.energystorageexchange.org).

The progressive clean energy policies of the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) have helped make the state a global leader in energy storage, with substantial progress achieved since its 2013 decision ordering SCE’s storage procurement. The state is currently focused on implementing AB 2514, which requires investor-owned utilities to procure 1.325 GW of energy storage by 2020. AB 2514 also required California’s Publicly Owned Utilities to evaluate procurement targets for energy storage. In October, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) released a plan to procure 178 MW of energy storage capacity by 2021.

The California Energy Storage Alliance (CESA) has been an active stakeholder in the legislative, rulemaking, and implementation process in the state. CESA represents more than 85 organizations dedicated to making energy storage a mainstream resource that will enable a cleaner, more efficient and reliable electric power system. All five of the SCE storage project winners are CESA members.

About the California Energy Storage Alliance 

CESA is a membership-based advocacy group committed to advancing the role of energy storage in the electric power sector through policy, education, outreach, and research. It was founded in 2009 by Janice Lin, Managing Partner of Strategen Consulting, and Don Liddell, Principal of Douglass & Liddell. (www.storagealliance.org)

This article is an EV News Report repost, credit: CESA.

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UK official figures show outstanding October for wind energy

November 5, 2014 in Environment, EV News, Greentech, Wind

UK official figures show outstanding October for wind energy  Image courtesy of CIA

UK official figures show outstanding October for wind energy
Image courtesy of CIA

By RenewableUK

New figures from the National Grid for October show that wind power smashed more energy generation records, contributing even more to the UK’s clean electricity mix.

Wind energy hit a record high providing a 24% daily share of the UK’s electricity needs on the 20th October, beating the previous record of 22% set in August. Wind energy’s share of the monthly electricity mix was also 12.3%, which easily beat last October’s share of 8%, and comes very close to the December record of 13%.

The new peak ‘half-hour’ record was also repeatedly broken. At the start of October the record high was 7,920 megawatts. This was broken over a number of days and now stands at an astonishing high of 8,100MW, enough to power 17 million homes at the time of generation.

In addition, the official statistics show that wind power generated more than nuclear for 11 full days over October, with the longest period being between the 17th – 24th.

RenewableUK’s Director of External Affairs, Jennifer Webber, said: “These figures shine a light on the full extent of wind’s powerful performance over October; to beat nuclear for seven days straight, and 11 days overall in a month, is unprecedented. We saw August set new records for generation and October has followed hot on its heels”.

Notes

1. National Grid statistics provided by independent data analysts EnAppSys http://www.enappsys.com. This includes National Grid estimates for embedded wind (turbines feeding into local networks).

2. In October, wind generated an average of 4208MW (12.3%) compared with 10982MW for coal (32.2%), 5152MW for nuclear (15.1%), 10355MW for CCGT (30.4%).

3. Wind beat nuclear on the following full days: 18th-23rd, 25th-28th and the 31st October. The longest period was between 6pm on the 17th to 3am on the 24th.

4. The record for wind energy’s monthly share of the fuel mix is 13%, set in December 2013.

This article is an EV News Report repost, credit: RenewableUK.

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Hawaiian Electric announces plans for approval of pending solar applications

November 5, 2014 in Environment, EV News, Greentech, Solar

Solar Inverter  Image courtesy of HiQ Hawaiian Electric announces plans for approval of pending solar applications

Solar Inverter
Image courtesy of HiQ
Hawaiian Electric announces plans for approval of pending solar applications

HONOLULU – The Hawaiian Electric Companies have announced a plan to clear the backlog of customers awaiting approval to interconnect their rooftop solar systems in neighborhoods with high amounts of solar already installed.

“We have been working diligently with inverter manufacturers, other national technical experts, and the solar industry to address potential safety and reliability issues which no other utility in the nation has yet faced,” said Jim Alberts, Hawaiian Electric senior vice president of customer service. “Applying results of recent inverter testing, over the next five months we expect that we’ll be able to approve almost all of the customers who have been waiting for interconnection on these high solar circuits.”

“We again apologize for the long and frustrating delay they’ve experienced,” said Alberts.

Under the plan, by April 2015 customers currently awaiting interconnection under the net energy metering program to neighborhood circuits with high levels of installed PV (PV capacity over 120 percent of daytime minimum load) will be approved for interconnection after meeting the following conditions:

  1. Their PV systems must use inverter models that meet stricter settings for preventing transient overvoltage, or rapid voltage spikes, that can endanger customers, their appliances and utility equipment.Some inverter models are now being tested. Other models may be certified as meeting the new requirements using tests approved by the Hawaiian Electric Companies. Testing protocols are being provided to inverter manufacturers.
  2. Their PV systems must use inverter models capable of complying with Hawaiian Electric specifications to “ride through” possible unstable frequency and voltage conditions during emergencies on the island-wide electric grid.Once inverter models have been certified by Underwriters Laboratories (UL), customers and their solar contractors or inverter manufacturers must reset inverters to these new settings. In the meantime, they must use recently approved interim settings.

In some cases, the normal technical review process may identify other issues for which more significant equipment upgrades may be needed. About 250 applications may be in this category, but it is anticipated they will be approved for interconnection no later than December 2015.

The above actions are based on favorable results from initial inverter testing. The Hawaiian Electric Companies will consider the final testing results and evaluate the applicability of these solutions for future customers who apply for interconnection.

Year to date, the Hawaiian Electric Companies have approved about 7,500 applications from customers to interconnect their rooftop solar systems to the grid. As of October 2014, the list of applications in progress for Oahu includes approximately:

  1. 1,100 customers seeking interconnection on circuits with installed PV equal to or less than 120% of the daytime minimum load. These applications are moving through the normal process and are likely to receive prompt approvals. In this category, new applications come in and, after review, approvals are sent out on an ongoing basis.
  2. About 1,000 customers are awaiting completion of upgrades to substations or other modifications to their own systems and will soon receive approvals.
  3. 2,700 customers are on circuits over 120% daytime minimum load. These will be approved over the coming months as this plan is implemented.

Similar approval plans will go into effect for Maui Electric and Hawaii Electric Light with each company having about 330 customers awaiting approvals on circuits with high amounts of installed PV.

Beyond these solutions for customers already awaiting rooftop solar interconnection approval, the companies are working on a range of other customer options, such as a non-export model incorporating battery storage and a community solar program, that will support a tripling of customer-sited solar in coming years. The companies’ have submitted a Distributed Generation Interconnection Plan and Integrated Interconnection Queue Proposal for review to the Hawai‘i Public Utilities Commission.

Across the three Hawaiian Electric Companies, more than 48,000 customers have rooftop solar. As of September 2014, about 11% of Hawaiian Electric customers, 10% of Maui Electric customers and 8 percent of Hawaii Electric Light customers have rooftop solar. This compares to a national average of one-half of one percent (0.5%) as of December 2013, according to the Solar Electric Power Association.

This article (11-3-14) is an EV News Report repost, credit: Hawaiian Electric.

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Bombardier and CSR Puzhen Announce Joint Venture

November 5, 2014 in China, Electric Vehicles, EV News, Light Rail

Image courtesy of Bombardier Bombardier and CSR Puzhen Announce Joint Venture

Image courtesy of Bombardier
Bombardier and CSR Puzhen Announce Joint Venture

Monorail and Automated People Mover Projects

Rail technology leader Bombardier Transportation and CSR Nanjing Puzhen Co. Ltd (CSR Puzhen), two of the world’s largest rail suppliers, have signed an agreement to create a joint venture to develop and manufacture INNOVIA vehicles for urban and airport transit systems.

Rapid urbanization and an increase in air travel have created a fast growing market for urban feeder systems and airport transit solutions in China.

Pierre Attendu, President, Systems division at Bombardier Transportation said: “This agreement demonstrates the firm commitment of both parties to develop a long-term industrial partnership that addresses China’s urgent need for urban and airport transportation.”

Jianwei Zhang, President of Bombardier China said: “We are proud to continue to take an active role in the future of China’s rail industry with CSR Puzhen. Together, we will offer cost-effective, medium-capacity INNOVIA transit solutions that can help China’s cities to meet their public transportation needs efficiently and sustainably.”

Bombardier is a global leader in the turnkey transit system segment. Bombardier’s proven INNOVIA APM technology is in operation at 25 locations across the globe, including an urban system in Guangzhou, China as well as at the world’s three busiest airports; Atlanta in the USA, Beijing in China and London Heathrow in the United Kingdom. The new generation INNOVIA Monorail 300 system is the most advanced and desirable monorail system on the market and is currently being delivered in São Paulo, Brazil and for the new King Abdullah Financial District in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

About Bombardier in China

Bombardier is actively involved in China’s development of urban mass transit and advanced railway networks. With four joint ventures and seven Wholly Foreign-Owned Enterprises (WFOE), Bombardier Transportation employs more than 4,000 people in China. Across its rail transportation and aerospace businesses, Bombardier has manufacturing facilities in Qingdao, Changzhou, Suzhou, Shanghai and Changchun, as well as offices in Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Shenyang and Hong Kong.

About Bombardier Transportation

Bombardier Transportation, a global leader in rail technology, offers the broadest portfolio in the rail industry and delivers innovative products and services that set new standards in sustainable mobility. BOMBARDIER ECO4 technologies – built on the four cornerstones of energy, efficiency, economy and ecology – conserve energy, protect the environment and help to improve total train performance for operators and passengers. Bombardier Transportation is headquartered in Berlin, Germany, and has a very diverse customer base with products or services in more than 60 countries. It has an installed base of over 100,000 vehicles worldwide.

This article is an EV News Report repost, credit: Bombardier.

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Model S Achieves Euro NCAP 5-Star Safety Rating

November 5, 2014 in Electric Vehicles, Model S, Tesla

Image courtesy of Tesla Model S Achieves Euro NCAP 5-Star Safety Rating

Image courtesy of Tesla
Model S Achieves Euro NCAP 5-Star Safety Rating

By The Tesla Motors Team

We’re pleased to announce that the Tesla Model S has received a maximum-possible 5-star safety rating from the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP).

Model S is one of just a few cars to have ever achieved a 5-star safety rating from both Euro NCAP and the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Additionally, Model S is the only car this year to have achieved both a 5-star Euro NCAP rating and 5 stars in every NHTSA subcategory, including frontal impact, side impact, and rollover. Only two other cars have earned the same recognition since 2011 (when NHTSA introduced its latest rating scheme).

The reason so few models achieve 5-star ratings in both Europe and the U.S. is that each program places emphasis on different safety aspects in the assessment process. NHTSA emphasizes structural and restraint safety, with a deep focus on how well the vehicle can withstand and absorb the energy of an impact while protecting its occupants. It is also primarily concerned with adult occupants. On the other hand, Euro NCAP assesses a wider range of scenarios, including tests for child and pedestrian safety. Unlike for NHTSA, active safety is also an important part of Euro NCAP’s 5-star requirement. Every year, the European organization raises the standard for a 5-star rating to account for technological advances in the industry.

The dual 5-star ratings for Model S validate our holistic approach to safety. We have been engineering passive and active safety systems in parallel, so the car is structurally sound and is also designed to intelligently anticipate and react to potentially dangerous situations.

Structurally, Model S has advantages not seen in conventional cars. It has a low center of gravity because its battery pack, the largest mass in the car, is positioned underneath the passenger compartment, making rollover extremely unlikely. It also has a large front crumple zone because of the lack of an engine, meaning it can absorb more energy from a frontal impact, the most common type of crash resulting in fatalities. Its body is reinforced with aluminum extrusions at strategic locations around the car, and the roof can withstand at least 4 g’s. It was for these reasons that Model S achieved 5 stars in every subcategory when tested by NHTSA in 2013.

This quarter, we started implementing the Model S active safety system in conjunction with the introduction of new Autopilot hardware, consisting of 12 ultrasonic sensors that sense up to 16 feet around the car, a forward-looking camera, a forward radar, and a digitally controlled, high-precision electric brake boost. We specifically selected this hardware to accommodate the progressive introduction of new safety features via software updates over the course of the next several months.

While the features already pushed to the Model S fleet – Lane Departure Warning and Speed Limit Warning – have proven sufficient to merit a 5-star NCAP rating, we will go much further with active safety systems. Features coming soon include Forward and Side Collision Warning and Avoidance, Blind Spot Warning, and Automatic Emergency Braking.

Safety has always been Tesla’s top priority, and we remain committed to continuously improving Model S to ensure that adults, children, and pedestrians alike receive the best possible protection from the car and its technology. In the meantime, Model S owners can be secure in the knowledge that this recognition from Euro NCAP reaffirms their car’s outstanding safety qualities.

This article is an EV News Report repost, credit: Tesla Motors.