Next Phase for Chattanooga’s Smart Grid
Top consumer smart grid news hand-selected and brought to you by the Smart Energy Consumer Collaborative.
Chattanooga plans to build on its status as a testbed for smart grid technology with the installation of a solar-battery microgrid at its municipal airport. The city’s public utility over the last decade has installed digital sensors and controls throughout its electric grid with money from a $111 million federal stimulus grant, often partnering on projects with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
The expansion of electric transportation has become a major strategic focus for the SMUD, with the utility pursuing a number of activities on the electric transportation front including engaging in research and development work on things like managed charging and taking steps to reduce range anxiety for electric vehicle customers.
FPL has signed a seven-year contract renewal with Itron, owners of SSN. The signed contract includes continued provision of Itron managed and professional services to help the utility modernize its grid network and improve operations and customer services. FPL has also purchased new Gen5 network hardware and access points developed by Itron to improve the speed of its Neighborhood Area Network.
GE has released a containerized energy storage product with a competitive advantage for installation time. The 1.2-megawatt, 4-megawatt-hour Reservoir system marks a new entry into the standardized, large-scale battery market. It reflects a strategic shift at GE’s storage practice, which recently reorganized after an initial foray into battery manufacturing and a detour in commercial and industrial energy services.
During his keynote address at DistribuTECH 2018 and just about anywhere he talks, University of Texas energy professor Michael Webber talks about how Hurricane Harvey destroyed about 500,000 vehicles in the Houston area. It’s the greatest single vehicle destruction in American history, as far as we know.
FPL has added a 10 MW/40 MWh battery to its existing 74.5 MW Babcock Ranch Solar Energy Center, creating what the utility believes to be the largest solar-plus-storage installation in the U.S. It is also the second such project FPL has unveiled in as many months. In February, the utility announced it had installed a 4 MW/16 MWh storage system at its Citrus Solar Energy Center, which was completed in 2016.
SDG&E recently announced plans to add up to 166 megawatts of energy storage via a proposal to the CPUC. If approved, the proposal would provide energy storage systems to critical need public sector facilities including fire and police stations. The initial seven projects would be located in San Diego County’s rural and urban areas.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently announced $1.4 billion in funding for 26 renewable energy projects, calling it the single-largest commitment to renewable energy by a state. The projects include 22 utility-scale solar farms, three wind farms and a single hydroelectric project. The largest project will be Invenergy's 340 MW wind farm in Western New York. All told the projects will add almost 1,400 MW.