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Energy Newsbriefs Blog

This current awareness service is prepared by the WSU Energy Program Library with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy State Energy Program. This information is provided for energy professionals and interested members of the public to highlight recent energy-related news, articles, and reports that discuss energy efficiency, energy conservation, and renewable sources of energy in engineering and policy circles.

 

Category: Power Generation

Power Plants


Lower Load Growth Expectations for 7th Plan Don’t Reduce Importance of Energy Efficiency

NW Energy Coalition, Feb. 6, 2015.
http://www.nwenergy.org/news/lower-load-growth-expectations-for-7th-plan-dont-reduce-importance-of-energy-efficiency/

"Northwest Power and Conservation Council [NPPC]staff expect significantly slower growth in energy demand over the next 20 years than was predicted in the sixth regional power plan five years ago. This preliminary projection marks a critical step in the Council’s development of the 7th Northwest Power and Conservation Plan."

Nuclear Still Delivers

Public Power, Jan./Feb. 2015, by Alice Clamp.
http://www.publicpower.org/Media/magazine/ArticleDetail.cfm?ItemNumber=42901

"From an electricity source that was 'too cheap to meter' to a long-awaited but elusive renaissance, nuclear energy has remained a viable generating resource. In Europe, the picture is mixed. The United Kingdom is building new nuclear plants, while Germany will close all of its currently operating nuclear plants by 2022. In the United States, nuclear power plants produce roughly one-fifth of the nation’s power. Within the public power community, nuclear energy accounts for about 8 percent of electricity generation."

Method for Assessing and Selecting New Small Hydro Technology

Hydro Review, Nov. 2014, by Quin Fen (Katherine) Zhang, and others.
http://www.hydroworld.com/articles/hr/print/volume-33/issue-9/articles/method-for-assessing-and-selecting-new-small-hydro-technology.html

"With significant development potential available at small run-of-river sites and non-powered dams in the U.S., the authors propose a software program to help interested parties choose the best type of technology to install at these sites."

Almost All U.S. Nuclear Plants Require Life Extension Past 60 Years to Operate Beyond 2050

Energy Information Administration, Dec. 8, 2014.
http://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.cfm?id=19091

"When nuclear power plants are built, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has the authority to issue initial operating licenses for a period of 40 years. Beyond that, the reactors need license renewals, and the NRC has granted 20-year license renewals to 74 of the 100 operating reactors in the United States. These reactors may now operate for a total period of 60 years."

Prepare Your Renewable Plant for Cold Weather Operations

Power Magazine, Oct. 2014, by Sonal Patel and Thomas W. Overton.
http://www.powermag.com/prepare-your-renewable-plant-for-cold-weather-operations/

"Although renewable generation is typically less affected by winter weather than gas- and coal-fired plants, it is far from weatherproof. Understanding the risks and preparing properly for them can avoid most problems."

Building a Stronger Grid

Electric Perspectives, Sept./Oct. 2014, by Elisa Wood.
http://mydigimag.rrd.com/publication/?i=223729&p=34

"Utilities are investing billions of dollars in the nation's transmission system to improve reliability, relieve congestion, facilitate competition, and support a diverse and changing generation portfolio."


Options for Emissions, Noise, and Fuel Handling [On-site Generation]

Business Energy, Sept./Oct. 2014, by Ed Ritchie.
http://www.distributedenergy.com/DE/articles/27099.aspx

"Onsite energy continues to prove itself as an economical and sustainable solution for businesses and institutions. But as it grows in popularity, the marketplace and government agencies are adding regulations for noise, emissions, and fuel handling. In the past such requirements would have slowed progress, but today there’s good news from a variety of manufacturers that have developed innovative solutions to these market challenges."

What’s Needed to Address U.S. Geothermal’s Deep-Seated Challenges?

Power Magazine, Sep. 2014, by Kennedy Maize.
http://www.powermag.com/whats-needed-to-address-u-s-geothermals-deep-seated-challenges/

"Geothermal generation is clean, renewable, and cost-effective over the long term, and the U.S. has vast untapped geothermal resources. So why is it still operating on the sidelines?"

Includes a sidebar that summarizes "The International Scene".

Advancing Microturbine Technology: A Small Package, Turbocharged

Cogeneration & On-Site Power Production, Jul/Aug 2014, by David Dewis.
http://www.cospp.com/articles/print/volume-15/issue-4/features/advancing-microturbine-technology-a-small-package-turbocharged.html

"Advanced microturbine technology with an intercooled and recuperated (ICR) cycle can deliver efficiency and low emissions at a competitive price. Now in the testing stage, ICR microturbines will be the foundation for the next generation of clean and efficient distributed generation, writes David Dewis."

Reducing Offshore [Wind] Costs Through Integrated Design

Wind Systems Magazine, Jul. 2014, by James Dobbins, David Quarton, Paul Reynolds, and Joe Phillips.
http://www.windsystemsmag.com/article/detail/684/reducing-offshore-costs-through-integrated-design

"Compared to its land-based cousin, offshore wind is a new energy technology. This relative immaturity as well as the technical challenge of offshore wind means that it is currently around 50 percent more expensive to produce a unit of energy offshore than it is onshore. But the stronger, more consistent wind at sea means that there are real opportunities to narrow the gap and there are several government and industry-sponsored programs aimed at doing just that in the UK, Germany and Denmark — all leading countries in the creation of offshore wind sectors."
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