Clean Energy Patents: What’s Up, What’s Down and How Do the Trends Portend Markets?

electric vehicles

A new analysis of clean energy patents reveals increases in electric vehicles and smart green home patents, upswings in blockchain, and decreases in solar and other energy harvesting filings. The report, the Patenting Trends Study, based on data through 2018, also found patents decreasing for smart grids, a term that generally describes the … [Read more...]

Looking at Microgrids a New Way with DERMS

microgrids

In an interview leading up to Microgrid 2019, Siemens' Sacha Fontaine describes how microgrids and DERMS will shape the grid of tomorrow. If microgrids were purely backup power, it would be easy to determine who benefits from them: clearly the customers who are spared from power outages. But grid-connected microgrids do more than keep the … [Read more...]

Getting the Most Out of Microgrids: Strategies, Tools & Technologies to Reap Societal Benefits

microgrid simulation

What strategies and tools can help microgrids reap benefits, including societal, financial and environmental gain? Microgrid Knowledge recently sought perspective from some of the panelists who will be featured at Microgrid 2019: Shaping the New Electric Grid, May 14-16 in San Diego. Patrick Lee, founder of PXiSE Energy Solutions, a … [Read more...]

The Hurricanes of the West — Wildfires — Spur More Microgrids in California

microgrids

After wildfires caused power outages in California, the tinder box state is considering more microgrids in a proceeding before state regulators. “Wildfires are now to California what Sandy was to New York,” said Rick Bolton, CEO of Compass Energy Platform, referencing the 2012 superstorm that spurred a government push for microgrids after … [Read more...]

What Will it Take to Boost Microgrid Markets to the Next Level?

microgrid markets

Moving the microgrid market is an ambitious goal that will require policy changes, technology advances and a customer-centric approach, say several microgrid industry leaders recently interviewed by Microgrid Knowledge. Overall, this challenging effort delivers big benefits, they say. “It’s an exciting time to be in this industry,” says … [Read more...]

Goodbye to Arguments Against Renewables? New Studies Find them as Reliable and Cheap as Fossils

energy-as-a-service

Can renewables cost less than fossil fuel generation? And are they as reliable? It appears so, especially when they are coupled with a suite of distributed energy resources (DERs), such as virtual power plants and demand response. New reports by Energy Innovation Policy and Technology and the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) lay out the … [Read more...]

How Batteries are Challenging Coal and Gas on Cost: BNEF

BESS

The refrain that lithium-ion batteries are a good idea, but just too expensive, is beginning to ring hollow in some markets, according to new data from BloombergNEF (BNEF). In fact, batteries are experiencing what BNEF describes as a “spectacular” drop in per megawatt-hour costs — 76 percent since 2012. The research company this week … [Read more...]

New England Grid Operator Puzzles in Microgrids and Energy Storage: Regional Outlook

energy storage

The good news in New England is that the trend is toward using lower-carbon fuels. The bad news is that grid managers are operating on thin margins and may have to rely on costlier measures to maintain grid reliability. What role will energy storage and microgrids have during this period?   The New England Independent System Operator, … [Read more...]

California Virtual Power Plant “Shattering Records” for Distributed Energy Storage

virtual power plant

Southern California Edison’s (SCE) five-year-old experiment with local energy has brought about a new world record with a virtual power plant delivering 2 GWh of grid services, according to AMS, the project designer and operator. In 2018 -- its first year of operation -- the virtual power plant was dispatched 250 times to the California … [Read more...]

Massachusetts and California Rank High in Energy Democracy: Report

energy democracy

Massachusetts, California, New York and Illinois are the top four states for energy democracy, as ranked by their commitment to boosting community-level renewable energy, according to a second annual Community Power Scorecard. The scorecard, released by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, names these states as stars because their energy … [Read more...]