Distributed Generation

  • “Simple is good”
  • May 29, 2013 | Kathleen Wolf Davis

    Rick Tempchin, executive director of retail energy services for the Edison Electric Institute, asks us to take another look at net metering and how it impacts the economy of power.

  • May 13, 2013 | Kathleen Wolf Davis

    In all honesty, utilities have wanted transactive energy for years. As the market becomes more open, utilities have lagged behind because their product isn’t priced by ability to supply or quantity of demand. Transactive energy could change all of that (for good or bad, depending on where you’re at geographically and in consumption and, also, how much you’re willing to pay attention to fluctuations).

  • May 12, 2013 | Paul De Martini

    Transactive energy markets hold the promise to achieve economic efficiency and reliability across the bulk power system and distribution networks. This research area was identified in the Caltech Resnick Sustainability Institute’s Grid2020 report released last fall, and was the topic of the third discussion of the series in April 2013 (reviewed in this article).

  • Mar 31, 2013 | Paul De Martini

    Insights from Caltech's Grid 2020 series: By 2020, nearly 30 percent of total U.S. resource capacity may come from customers’ generation and responsive demand. Keys to making these policies successful as we reach tipping points of customer adoption are getting the pricing right and creating new services for customer resources, says Paul De Martini, Resnick Institute Visiting Scholar, Caltech.

  • Mar 20, 2013 | Paul De Martini

    Widespread adoption of rooftop solar and other forms of distributed generation and responsive demand is transforming the mix of resources used to meet customers’ energy needs and manage the grid, speakers at Caltech’s Resnick Institute’s Grid2020 discussion series revealed. 

  • ScottMadden, Inc., one of North America's leading energy consulting firms, recently released The Energy Industry Update. This semi-annual publication features ScottMadden's view of significant events and emerging trends in the industry.
  • Annual e-fest now regular stop for power industry

    Jan 08, 2013 | Phil Carson

    What makes consumers sit up and take notice, besides wall-sized flat screen TVs? Keep an eye on the Consumer Electronic Show this week in Las Vegas for a birds-eye view of the idolatry of gadgetry. The power industry may need to leverage it.

  • Jan 03, 2013 | Kathleen Wolf Davis

    Distributed energy—energy located with the end user and not stretched across a transmission network of wires and substations—will continue to follow the trend set by an intelligent grid: As the grid expands its smarts, distributed energy expands it’s reach. Is your infrastructure prepared?

  • Global survey reflects interest in storage, generation and islanding

    Dec 23, 2012 | Phil Carson

    An IEEE survey of global utility executives finds that energy storage, distributed generation and microgrids will drive energy markets over the next five years. It's not your father's utility anymore.

  • Achieving energy goals: a practical process

    Dec 12, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Boulder's city council is delving into every aspect of "going muni" to make a sound decision on the matter, while keeping every avenue open, including future cooperation with currently divorced partner, Xcel Energy. The careful approach could have historic consequences for communities and investor-owned utilities.

  • New `report' espouses mainstream ideas, but in odd company

    Dec 03, 2012 | Phil Carson

    A new paper that argues against stimulus funding for smart meters and calls for reforms that allow communities to pursue municipalization is "a day late and a dollar short." Especially as it links arms with an anti-meter effort undercut by minimal (and shrinking) opt-out rates. Good ideas, late to the party, odd company.

  • Austin Energy veteran looks ahead to new paradigm

    Nov 27, 2012 | Phil Carson

    John Cooper, co-author of The Advanced Smart Grid, updates his views on grid modernization and the trend away from centralized power towards "the edge." Is Cooper onto something or is he blowing smoke?  

  • Solid state transformers coming, but standards guide current work

    Nov 11, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Smart transformers are coming, but until then current technology and standards can handle the bi-directional flow of power between utilities and industrial customers with cogeneration or renewable, distributed energy resources.

  • 'Smarts' overrated, some say; others envision symbiosis

    Nov 08, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Discussions about grid hardening and resiliency have gone in every direction: smarts should give way to traditional measures such as aggressive vegetation management, smart meters did play a role in post-Sandy restoration and end-users should play new roles if they expect to survive more extreme weather events. We discuss these ideas with our readers.

  • New commercial venture generating interest

    Oct 04, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Vehicle-to-grid technology and its business case have advanced to commercialization and, despite persistent skepticism, San Diego Gas & Electric and the PJM Interconnection are actively examining both. We bring you the conclusion of a two-part article, with links to more.

  • American grid expert weighs in

    Aug 01, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Erich Gunther, recognized grid authority, received some data on frequency variations on India's grid that is implicated in the historic blackout this week. He shares thoughts on immediate steps the developing nation can take to address a load-generation imbalance. 

  • Decentralization could be beneficiary

    Jul 31, 2012 | Phil Carson

    A blackout in India cuts power to 700 million people. When the causes are found, will the answer be decentralization, privatization and automation? And who will profit? Our correspondent cites reports on the event and muses on outcomes.

  • Needed: applications, alternatives, regulations, markets

    Jul 25, 2012 | Phil Carson

    California regulators' struggle to respond to legislation mandating energy storage has led them to adopt a framework for analysis that will address applications, alternatives, cost effectiveness and the regulatory and market frameworks that must include storage if it is found to have useful, cost-effective applications. It ain't easy and it ain't simple.

  • E-Energy pilot projects a research priority

    E-Energy in Germany
    Jul 05, 2012 | Kate Rowland

    In the course of basic energy reform, Germany is vastly changing the structure of its supply system in the coming decades. A recent report details the interim results of Germany's E-Energy pilot projects, moving toward what it is referring to as the Internet of Energy. We review the highlights.