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VATIS Update Non-conventional Energy . Oct-Dec 2013

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New and Renewable Energy Oct-Dec 2013

ISSN: 0971-5630

VATIS Update New and Renewable Energy (formerly Non Conventional Energy)* is published 4 times a year to keep the readers up to date of most of the relevant and latest technological developments and events in the field of New and Renewable Energy. The Update is tailored to policy-makers, industries and technology transfer intermediaries.

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* This update has been renamed as 'VATIS Update: New and Renewable Energy' from Jan-Mar 2015 onwards.

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Contents

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IN THE NEWS

Indian solar renewable energy credits trading volumes increase

The volume of solar renewable energy credits (SRECs) traded in India continued to increase in October 2013 but prices remain at the floor, according to an analysis by RESolve Energy Consultants (Chennai, India).

The volume of SRECs traded increased 28% sequentially to 9,257, however buy bids represented only 13.6% of sell bids, 0.2% greater than in September 2013. Prices remained at INR 9,300 (USD 150) per SREC. This is the fourth month of increasing volumes of SREC trading, from a low of 1,479 in June 2013. The largest gains have been in the last two months, which have seen 6,632 and 9,257 SRECs traded.
Source: http://www.solarserver.com

Indian solar market forecasting a better 2014

Mercom Capital Group, a consulting renewable energy firm, in a report said with 420 MW of projects missing commissioning dates, India is not likely to register any significant year-over-year installation growth for 2013, even as global solar market is forecasted to grow 20%.It has been a quiet year for the Indian solar sector, with installations at 900 MW so far this year and final numbers forecasted to be similar to last year. The guidelines and requests for selection have finally been published for Phase II Batch I, for 750 MW of PV projects. Unfortunately, India has decided to include domestic content requirements for half (375 MW) of PV projects, which may be enough to cause a trade dispute but not enough to help domestic manufacturers. It is an unnecessary risk that raises uncertainty with minimal reward. According to the proposed time line, these 750 MW of Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM) Phase II projects will not be commissioned until at least May 2015. Therefore, projects under Indian state schemes are where the action will be in 2014.

The challenges faced by the Indian economy this year also affected solar industry. This year the market has seen high inflation, an 8 % rise in module prices and a 15% rupee depreciation, all of which contributed to overall project costs. At the same time, reverse auctions in India continue to defy odds and go in the opposite direction with record low bidding, especially in states that have an L1 type bidding mechanism (lowest bid must be matched by all) in place. Current economic conditions, solar irradiance and off-taker creditworthiness do not look to be reflected in these bids. With bids fluctuating almost 50 % over the year when comparing state-to-state, it is imperative to have deep insight and market intelligence to be successful in this environment. With some states yet to sign PPAs and upcoming state and general elections, our preliminary estimates are tentatively at 1,750 MW of solar installations in India for 2014. Although the projected installation growth looks impressive, it includes 420 MW of CSP projects that did not get installed in 2013.
Source: http://www. articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com

Sri Lanka to establish 200 MW wind power project

General Manager of Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) Shavindra Fernando says that a feasibility study will be carried out to establish a wind power project in the northwestern coastal town of Mannar. The proposed wind power project will generate 200 Megawatt of electricity. The feasibility study is carried out as part of Sri Lanka’s attempt to turn to the renewable electricity as a sustainable solution to the energy crisis. The study will be completed next year.

The Sri Lankan government plans to increase the wind power capacity to 10 percent of the entire power generation in the country. Sri Lanka expects assistance of the Asian Development Bank to launch the project. Several small-scale wind power plants are already in operation in the Kalpitiya area of the northwestern coastal belt. A 30-Megawatt plant operated by Senok Wind Power located in the Kalpitiya area is in operation since 2010.
http://www.colombopage.com

Renewable energy project in Pakistan

The Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF) has announced the launch of 10 million Euros multi-technology renewable energy project focusing on deprived and marginalized communities in 10 districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province including Chitral, Upper Dir, Lower Dir, Swat, Buner, Swabi, Karak, Bannu, Hangu and Lakki Marwat.

The project is funded by the Federal Republic of Germany, through the German Development Bank – KfW- and is envisioned to be followed by a second phase of 12.5 million euros. A simple ceremony to this effect was held at Islamabad Club with former Khyber Pakhtunkhwa caretaker chief minister Shamas-ul-Mulk in the chair. German Embassy, Islamabad Deputy Head of Mission Peter Felten, KfW Head of Division, Crisis and Governance Jens Clausen, PPAF CEO Qazi Azmat Isa and senior officials of PPAF and its partner organizations were also present on this occasion. The project is planned to be implemented through six well-reputed PPAF partner organizations, which will be working in close collaboration with the provincial government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and local stakeholders.
Source: http://www.dailytimes.com.pk

Bangladesh to set up solar equipment testing lab

The Bangladesh government is all set to establish the country’s first dedicated solar equipment testing laboratory in a bid to ensure superior quality renewable energy related products. Infrastructure Development Company Ltd (IDCOL), a state-owned non-bank financial institution that promotes green technology, has already awarded the lab installation job to Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET). “The programmer for installing solar home systems is gradually expanding in the country,” said Mahmood Malik, chief executive officer of IDCOL. “We are going to set up the testing lab as it will heighten performance of the solar home systems and ensure consumer satisfaction at the household level,” he said.

The laboratory will randomly and continuously test and monitor the products to improve their quality, said Malik, also the executive director of the company. IDCOL will also sign a memorandum of understanding with the BUET to ensure smooth operation of the lab. The BUET has allocated 4,000 square feet of space to set up the lab on the electrical and electronic engineering department premises, said Md. Ziaur Rahman Khan, a professor at the department. The initial focus of the lab is to verify the performance of specific photovoltaic (PV) components such as verification of peak power ratings for PV modules and battery capacity, determination of charge controller set points and measurement of lamp output, he said. The lab will also be used for research, said Khan, also the quality control manager of the proposed laboratory.

Initially, the company will use $0.5 million, provided by World Bank under the Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Development Project-2, to set up the lab, the IDCOL chief executive said. Under the project, the company has already appointed a US consultant to monitor the laboratory work and it will procure equipment and other resources through international bidding, he said. The goals of the testing center are to obtain ISO 17025 laboratory accreditation for PV systems testing within five years, and to become a commercially-viable and internationally-recognized testing laboratory.
Source: http://www.thedailystar.net

China to build more photovoltaic power stations

China’s central energy authority has proposed to build more photovoltaic (PV) power stations in 2014 than originally planned as solar panel producers struggle before dwindling export orders. The capacity of new PV power stations to be built in 2014 will be increased from the previous target of 10 gigawatts (GW) to 12 GW, the National Energy Administration said.

China has an excessive supply of PV products in the domestic market after demand from major export destinations – the European Union and the United States – faltered due to trade rows. The State Council, China’s cabinet, announced measures to boost the sagging PV sector, including promoting distributed PV projects, eliminating outdated capacity and encouraging industrial restructuring and technological progress. The State Council said new installed PV power capacity should stay around 10 GW annually between 2013 and 2015, and total PV capacity should exceed 35 GW by the end of 2015.
Source: http://news.xinhuanet.com

Wind turbine generator installed in China

The first China-made wind turbine generator has been installed in a wind farm in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region to capture high altitude wind energy, company officials said. The producer, Shanxi-based Taiyuan Heavy Machinery Group Co., Ltd., said that the 5,000-kilowatt wind turbine was installed and put into use at a wind farm located more than 2,100 meters above sea level.

Cao Keshun, spokesman for the company, said that the generator, which weighs 805 tons, can be used both on land and sea for wind power generation. Its annual output is enough to supply electricity for 10,000 households per year. The Chinese government strongly supports development of the wind power industry. The country’s wind power installed capacity is expected to top 75 million kilowatts with electricity output reaching 140 billion kilowatt-hours by the end of 2013, said Wang Jun, head of the New Energy Bureau of the National Energy Administration. Cao said that the company has decided to tap further into wind power equipment production, and recently built a plant in Ulan Qab City in Inner Mongolia, which was designed with an annual production capacity of 500 wind power generators. Es-tablished in 1950, Taiyuan Heavy Machinery Group Co., Ltd. was the first heavy machinery manufacturer designed and built by the People’s Republic of China. Earlier it produced the world’s largest and strongest crane.
Source: http://www.english.cri.cn

Thailand’s subsidy spurs investment frenzy

Thailand’s energy companies will invest up to $2 billion in the solar energy industry over the next five years, as the government incentivizes solar projects to provide power for Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy. “Solar is hot,” said Wandee Khunchornyakong, CEO of SPCG, Thailand’s largest solar farm, according to Reuters. “It’s undeniable that everyone wants to enter this business.”

SPCG will make a net profit of 10 million Thai baht ($319,400) per megawatt this year, at least four times of that of traditional power producers. The Thai government is increasingly buying electricity from solar power producers at a premium now that fossil fuel prices have gone up. And companies like Utility Electricity Generating Pcl (EGCO) and refiner Bangchak Petroleum Pcl are among the traditional energy companies hoping to ride the wave and expand into solar. Solar already performed well for Bangchak, part of state-controlled PTT Pcl, with earnings of the company’s solar business jumping 150 percent year-on-year in the third quarter. The technology now accounts for 15 percent of its core quarterly profit of 2.6 billion baht. The company plans to raise its solar capacity to 169 megawatts by next year from the 94 MW this year, and it hopes to further boost that number to 500 MW by 2020.
Source: http://www.ibtimes.com

China develop solar power windows

Scientists in China have developed a new “smart” window which doubles as an energy-generating solar cell. Yanfeng Gao and a team of colleagues from the Chinese Academy of Sciences developed the solar cells by leveraging the unique properties of vanadium oxide (VO2), a material which undergoes a reversible phase transition at different temperatures, and is capable of displaying both metallic and insulating properties.

Beneath the critical temperature of 68 degrees Celsius, VO2 is an insulating material which is transparent to infrared light. Above this temperature threshold, however, it becomes metallic and reflects infrared light instead of permitting its passage. This peculiar quality of VO2 enabled the scientists to overcome the challenge of incorporating a solar cell into a window, a feat which requires a material which is transparent yet also capable of efficiently harvesting the sun’s energy.

The scientists installed a VO2 film into the smart windows where it serves two purposes – it disseminates sunlight to photovoltaic cells situated around the glass panels, thus generating power for domestic usage, while also acting as an insulator by regulating the amount of solar energy which can penetrate the indoor environment. The incorporation of the VO2 film thus enables the windows to save energy as they generate it, marking a major advance upon existing smart windows, which are only capable of regulating the entry of light and heat from the sun.

“This smart window combines energy-saving and generation in one device, and offers potential to intelligently regulate and utilize solar radiation in an efficient manner,” said the scientists in a study published in the journal Scientific Reports. The development of the smart window follows efforts by the Chinese government heavily promote renewable energy and green engineering, in a bid to tackle the severe environmental problems which the country’s breakneck economic development has brought. Beijing has further pledged to reduce carbon emissions per unit of economic output by as much as 45 per cent before the end of the decade compared to 2005 base levels.
Source: http://sourceable.net

SOLAR ENERGY

Bio-based solar cell

Researchers at the Ruhr-Universität Bochum (RUB), Germany, have developed a bio-based solar cell. They embedded the two proteins photosystem 1 and 2, which in plants are responsible of photosynthesis, into complex molecules developed in- house, thus creating an efficient electron current. Headed by Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schuhmann from the Department of Analytical Chemistry and Center for Electrochemical Sciences (CES) and Prof. Dr. Matthias Rögner from the Department of Plant Biochemistry, the team has published a report in the journal Angewandte Chemie.

In leaves, the photosystems 1 and 2 utilize light energy very efficiently; this is required for converting carbon dioxide into oxygen and biomass. The Bochum researchers’ bio-based solar cell, on the other hand, generates electricity rather than biomass. Prof. Rögner’s team isolated the two photosystems from thermophilic cyanobacteria that live in a hot spring in Japan. Because of their habitat and behavior, their photosystems are much more stable than compara-ble proteins of species that do not occur under extreme environmental conditions. Prof. Schuhmann’s team developed complex electron-conducting materials, so-called redox hydrogels. The researchers embedded the photosystems into these hydrogels in order to connect them to the electrodes of the photovoltaic cells.

The cell is made up of two chambers. In the first chamber, the protein photosystem 2 extracts electrons from water molecules, thus generating oxygen. The electrons migrate through the redox hydrogel to the electrode in the first chamber which is connected to the electrode in the second chamber. The electrode in the second chamber conducts the electrons via a different redox hydrogel onto photosystem 1. There, electrons are passed to oxygen; water is generated. However, the photosystems carry out these processes only if they are powered by light energy. Thus, if exposed to light, there is a continuous electricity flow within the closed system. In order to convert solar into electric energy, there must be a potential difference between the two electrodes. The Bochum researchers have established this difference by deploying redox hydrogels with different potentials. The potential difference determines the bio photovoltaic cell’s voltage and, consequently, its efficiency. Contact: Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Schuhmann, Department of Analytical Chemistry (Electroanalytic & Sensors), Faculty of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Ruhr-Universität, 44780, Bochum, Germany, Tel: +49-234-322-6200; E-mail: wolfgang.schuhmann@rub.de.
Source: http://aktuell.ruhr-uni-bochum.de

Scientists’ new approach improves efficiency of solar cells

An international team of scientists, led by researchers from the University of York, the United Kingdom, and University of St. Andrews, the United Kingdom, has developed a new method to increase the efficiency of solar cells. The new approach achieves highly efficient broad-band light trapping in thin films, with more light captured in the film in order to maximize absorption and electricity generation. The research, which is reported in Nature Communications, also involved scientists from Sun Yat-sen University and the GuangDong Polytechnic Normal University, China, and IMEC (Interuniversity MicroElectronics Center), Leuven, Belgium.

The new method builds on research into a class of materials known as quasi-crystals, which offer advantages in terms of the spectrum of light they are able to capture. However, the problem with these structures is that their properties are difficult to tailor towards specific applications as they lack the design tools available with periodic structures such as regular gratings. To solve this problem, the researchers created a new structure called a quasi-random structure, which combines the rich spatial frequencies associated with quasi-crystals with the high level of control afforded by periodic structures. The research was supported by the Scottish Universities Physics Alliance (SUPA), the National Key Basic Research Special Foundation, the National Natural Science Foundation of China and Guangdong Natural Science Foundation. Contact: Caron Lett, Press Officer, U.K. Tel: +44-190-432-2029, E-mail: caron.lett@york.ac.uk.
Source: http://www.york.ac.uk

Researchers develop simple process to print OLEDs and solar cells

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research (IAP), Germany, worked together with mechanical engineering company MBRAUN to develop a production facility able to create inexpensive organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) as well as organic solar cells on an industrial scale. It is now possible to print OLEDs and solar cells from solutions containing luminescent organic molecules and absorptive molecules respectively, which makes printing them onto a carrier film very straightforward. Usually, to print OLEDs you need to vaporize small molecules in a high vacuum, making it a very expensive process.

“We’re now able to produce organic components under close-to-real-life manufacturing conditions with relative ease. Now for the first time it will be possible to translate new ideas into commercial products,” says Dr. Armin Wedel, head of division at the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research in Potsdam-Golm. At the heart of the pilot plant is a robot that controls different printers that basically act like an inkjet printing system. OLEDs are applied to the carrier material one layer at a time using a variety of starting materials. Industry experts estimate that printed OLEDs hold out the promise of becoming a billion-dollar market. “The focus in Germany and Europe is on OLED lighting because this is the home market for large companies such as Osram and Philips,” explains Wedel. “The manufacturing facility will help secure competitive advantages in this particular segment of the market. It strengthens the German research community, and also demonstrates the capabilities of German plant engineering,” says Dr. Martin Reinelt, CEO of MBRAUN in Garching.
Source: http://dailyfusion.net

Developing a cheaper, alternative solar cell for Europe

The EU-funded project SCALENANO (Development and scale-up of nanostructured based materials and processes for low-cost high-efficiency chalcogenide-based photovoltaics) aims to produce high-efficiency photovoltaic (PV) cells based on alternatives to standard silicon technologies. A PV cell or solar cell is an electrical device that converts the energy of light directly into electricity. Professor Alejandro Perez-Rodriguez of the Catalonia Institute for Energy Research, Spain, SCALENANO’s project coordinator, says the researchers are focusing on chemical processes that, in contrast with most industrial technologies, do not require complex and very expensive machinery and equipment.

With climate change threatening and worldwide CO2 emission levels higher than ever, the need for renewable energy technologies is now critical. But for widespread market acceptance, these new technologies have to be cheap, suitable for mass production and easy to implement. Ultimately, a balance has to be struck, minimizing greenhouse emissions while not harming future economic growth and quality of life.

“The development of thin film-based technologies will allow high photovoltaic conversion efficiencies with a significant lowering of fabrication costs,” he says. SCALENANO, says Professor Perez-Rodriguez, will apply innovative processes based on the electro-deposition of nanostructured precursors, as well as alternative processes with very high potential throughput and process rates. These include printing techniques with novel nanoparticle ink formulations and new cost-effective deposition techniques.
Source: http://www.cordis.europa.eu

Cost effective material for solar panels

Solar panels generate electricity by absorbing sunlight, but that is only half the battle. Once electrons in the panel are energized, they must be channeled in the same direction – a process that typically requires a panel made with layers of two kinds of material. Not in the future, if a team of researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University, the United States, can help it. In a new study published online by the journal Nature, the scientists reported they had created a new class of ceramic material that could accomplish both tasks cheaply and efficiently.

The authors say their new ceramic also would have an edge over “thin-film” solar panels, which tend to contain materials that are rare, toxic or both. The new material contains potassium, niobium, barium and nickel, which are relatively abundant and environmentally benign. So is silicon, but it requires lots of processing and manufacturing to be used in solar panels. The authors say their combination of materials will be cheaper in the long run. Materials that can channel the flow of electrons are described as having polarity, and have been known to science for decades. But they have not been used to make solar panels because they primarily absorb energy from ultraviolet light, not from the visible part of the spectrum.
Source: http://azstarnet.com

WIND ENERGY

World’s largest offshore wind turbine

French engineering giant Alstom has announced it has successfully completed the installation of the world’s largest offshore wind turbine, off Ostend Harbour in Belgium. The company said the installation of its 6-MW Haliade 150 turbine made it the largest wind turbine to ever be erected offshore. The giant turbine boasts pillars that have been sunk to a depth of over 60 meters, a 61 meter tall jacket, a 78 meter tower, a nacelle that stands 100 meters above sea level, and blades that are over 73 meters long. The entire structure is said to weigh around 1,500 tons.

Alstom is one of a number of engineering firms working on the next generation of giant offshore wind turbines that are designed to deliver at least 6MW of capacity. The company said that the size of the turbine, coupled with an innova-tive new direct drive design that removes the need for a gearbox means the yield from the turbine is 15 per cent better than existing turbines, allowing a single installation to provide enough power for around 5,000 households.

Alstom said the design had already been successfully tested onshore and the new installation at the Belwind wind farm would “help in confirming how the machine behaves within the offshore environment for which it was specifically designed and developed”. The company also highlighted its plans to complete the development of two new factories in Saint-Nazaire by mid- 2014 to produce the nacelles and generators for the turbine and then bring online two new factories in Cherbourg to produce the blades and towers. Contact: Virginie Hourdin/Claire Biau; Tel: +33-141-492- 136-3995; E-mails: virginie.hourdin-bremond@chq.alstom.com, claire.biau@alstom.com.
Source: http://www.businessgreen.com

Floating wind turbine

Japanese government in association with Marubeni Corp. has setup floating wind turnbines about 20 kilometers (12 miles) off the coast of Fukushima, Japan, site of the March 2011 nuclear disaster. The project is a symbol of Japan’s ambition to commercialize the unproven technology of floating offshore wind power and its plan to turn quake-ravaged Fukushima into a clean energy hub.

“Fukushima is making a stride toward the future step by step,” Yuhei Sato, governor of Fukushima, said at a ceremony in Fukushima marking the project’s initiation. “Floating offshore wind is a symbol of such a future.” The 11-member group’s project so far consists of a 2-megawatt turbine from Hitachi Ltd. nicknamed “Fukushima Mirai.” A floating substation, the first of its kind, has also been set up and bears the name “Fukushima Kizuna.” Mirai means future, while kizuna translates as ties. The group is planning to install two more turbines by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. (7011) with 7 megawatts of capacity each. The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has said the floating offshore capacity may be expanded to 1,000 megawatts.

The trade ministry has already set aside 22 billion yen ($222 million) for the five-year undertaking, according to ministry officials. The trade ministry is requesting an additional 31 billion yen for the fiscal year starting April 1. The Fukushima project follows similar projects with floating turbines in Norway, Portugal and Nagasaki in southwestern Japan. The Nagasaki project is backed by Japan’s environment ministry.
Source: http://www.bloomberg.com

Vertical axis wind turbine

Eastern Wind Power, Inc. (EWP), the United States, has developed the Sky Farm™ 50 kilowatt (kW) wind turbine with the strength and stability to withstand accelerated winds on high-rise buildings, and with the versatility and mobility to be pole- mounted in open spaces, according to the Haars. EWP’s team of Cambridge and Boston based-aeronautical, mechanical, electronic and structural engineers designed, built, commissioned and tested a full-scale prototype for durability, and then followed up with a production model. Clear Carbon Components in Rhode Island manufactured both. EWP erected its full-scale prototype Sky Farm™ 50 kilowatt wind turbine at a test site at Martha’s Vineyard Airport (MVA) in August 2010, with the permission of airport manager Sean Flynn.

The turbine was fully commissioned with a connection to the grid in September 2011 and has been producing power for the airport ever since. In addition to wind, the airport site exposed the wind turbine to Martha’s Vineyard’s mix of salt air, rain and snow, which led to changes made in connection components and fittings to stainless steel, and additional waterproofing of the generator in the production model that was completed in September 2012 that replaced the prototype.
Source: http://www.mvtimes.com

Vestas reveals new high-wind turbine

Vestas, Denmark, has launched a new 3.3 MW turbine for high-wind onshore sites, aimed at markets with tip-height restrictions such as the United Kingdom and Ireland. The V105-3.3MW is based on the company’s existing medium-wind model, the V112-3MW, with the same nacelle, hub and drive train. The shorter 51.5-metre blades are also developed from the same technology as the 55-metre blades from the V112.

Chief technology officer, Anders Vedel, said: “The geometry and characteristics of the blade will be the same. The same mould will be used, but it will be shorted with a block in the end that allows us to make the shorter blade. “With a smaller rotor, this will allow it to deal with the higher stress it will experience, without any other changes needed to the turbine. It will be fully certified for high-wind sites.”

Vedel also confirmed that Vestas is working on upgrading the V112 with a 3.3MW generator. A 117-metre rotor version is currently being developed. Vestas is confident there is a market for this turbine. Vedel said: “The United Kingdom government predicts the onshore wind capacity will increase by 3.5–5.5GW by 2020 and around two thirds of wind farms in U.K. must meet the tip-height restriction of 127 meters. So this turbine is well placed to take ad-vantage of this.” He added that the inclusion of a built-in full-scale convertor makes it fully compliant with the U.K. and Irish grid. But Vedel maintained that this turbine does not represent a U-turn: “This is not a change in policy; we will still be focusing on strengthening our low-to-medium wind portfolio. This is to maintain our competitiveness in the high-wind sector.” The turbine will be installed on a 72.5 meter tubular steel tower.
Source: http://www.windpowermonthly.com

Nordex unveils new light-wind turbine

Nordex, Germany, is extending its Generation Delta turbine platform with the N131/3000 machine for light-wind locations. The new turbine has a substantially larger rotor with blades measuring 64.4 meters in length that produce a 26% increase in the rotor sweep area when compared to the company’s best-selling N117/2400 model. That will push up nominal power by 25%, Nordex says.

“A larger swept area is giving us a stronger footprint in low wind areas,” Jörg Scholle, Nordex’s head of engineering told a press conference. “That leads us to a higher output and new efficiency standard in light wind.” The new machine is especially designed for IEC-3 locations and will complement the Generation
Source: http://http://www.rechargenews.com

GE started commercial operation of 2.5-120 wind turbine

The first GE wind turbine to use Industrial Internet has begun operation in Germany. The 2.5-120 turbine was installed in Schnaittenbach, a town in Bavaria, Germany. The 8MW turbine features advanced controls, a 120m rotor, and a specially engineered, 139m tall hybrid tower.

GE engineers designed the 2.5- 120 turbine to generate wind energy in densely wooded regions with low wind intensity. According to officials at GE, the Industrial Internet uses data analysis to connect machines and equip them with intelligence, helping to position each one for enhanced performance. The 2.5-120 analyzes tens of thousands of data points every second to drive higher output and improve services productivity, helping to manage wind’s variability.
Source: http://www.onlinetes.com

WAVE/TIDAL ENERGY

Tidal turbine system

The Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC), Singapore, and Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore, have introduced a 1000-watt tidal energy generator that will serve as a test bed for future tidal turbine systems, enabling Singapore to become more energy secure. The NTU developed the one-kilowatt turbine test bed and partnered with the SDC to install the system by the Sentosa Boardwalk, a pedestrian gateway leading to Sentosa Island, a popular tourist destination in the country.

According to the two organizations, this initial tidal energy generator will help Singapore to harness a new renewable energy option that will increase its sources of energy and enhance its energy security. Unlike solar and wind energy, which are susceptible to weather fluctuations, tidal power is more reliable since tidal cycles are predictable. The International Energy Agency (IEA), however, categorizes tidal, solar and wind energy as all variable renewables.

Professor Subodh Mhaisalkar, executive director of Energy Research Institute at NTU (ERI@N), said that investment in emerging technologies and alternative sources of electricity is a demonstration of Singapore’s commitment to increase its use of sustainable energy. The tidal energy generator, built by engineers from the institute, features two low-flow turbines designed especially for local conditions. These prototype turbines are highly efficient in spite of low water speeds in the area, NTU and SDC explained. The turbines in Singapore will be powered with both low and high tidal currents, the two organizations noted. They explained that the Sentosa Boardwalk is an “ideal location for a tidal power test bed” since the water starts out at a slow speed that then quickens when the water passes through the narrow channels between the concrete pillars supporting the overhead bridge The system will be able to generate up to one thousand watts of energy per hour, said NTU and SDC. This is enough to power about 70 fluorescent light bulbs (of 15-watt bulbs) commonly used in households, they noted.
Source: http://www.eco-business.com

Alstom tidal turbine hits 100-MWh mark

Alstom said its 1-megawatt tidal turbine that’s undergoing testing at the European Marine Energy Centre has now sent 100 megawatt-hours of electricity onto the grid. The device first hit full operating power at the EMEC back in July. The company called this a “major milestone” in the development of the tidal energy device, a horizontal-axis turbine that looks a lot like the big wind turbines that are churning out power around the world. With a rotor diameter of 18 meters, it is submerged on a tripod structure at a depth of 40 meters. The three blades on the turbine are pitchable (that is, the blades can be turned to change the rotation speed), and the turbine can rotate to face the incoming tide.

Alstom, which acquired this device with the purchase of the United Kingdom, turbine maker Tidal Generation from Rolls Royce, said “tests will continue at Orkney in different operational conditions into 2014, to demonstrate further autonomous running capabilities and efficiency of the turbine while generating electricity to the grid. These testing campaigns will be followed by other tests including deployment in pilot farms before the start of full commercial production.”
Source: http://www.earthtechling.com

Turbine technology for tidal project

Fundy Tidal Inc. of Digby County and Clean Current Power Systems Inc. of British Columbia have entered into an agreement to test and demonstrate a Clean Current tidal turbine as part of a tidal power system.“This is another significant step in Fundy Tidal’s goal to play a leading role in initiating tidal energy R&D activities in Digby County,” Vince Stuart, Fundy Tidal president, said in a news release The project was expected to last 12 months, with a target commissioning date in the fall of 2014, the release said.

Energy storage technology was to be selected to best match the predicted output of the Clean Current turbine.“We at Clean Current are excited to work with Fundy Tidal, a pioneer in the effort to harness the tremendous potential tidal energy in Nova Scotia,” Christopher Gora, president of Clean Current, said Clean Current and Fundy Tidal are currently working together as part of the Acadia University led research project funded under Natural Resources Canada’s ecoENERGY Innovation Initiative. Fundy Tidal is a Community Economic Development Corporation based in Digby County.
Source: http://www.thechronicleherald.ca


Underwater kite catches Irish tides for power

A Swedish company Minesto has set up a 1:4 scale “Deep Green” power plant in Strangford Lough, Ireland, the largest inlet in the British Isles, in County Down. The company said the deployment of the winged device with a turbine attached out front “proves power production from slow currents using a surface-mounted installation, a concept that is directly transferable to full commercial installations in ocean currents.” Here’s how the concept is sup-posed to work:

Minesto cites three key elements to the design – the hydrodynamic wing, which moves through the water courtesy the lift forces of water flowing over it; the tether, which can accommodate power cables from the generator and signal cable to the control system; and the swivel at the anchoring point, which allows the device freedom of movement through changing tidal currents. On its website, Minesto details four versions of the carbon fiber Deep Green kite, ranging from one with a wing span of 8 meters, a turbine diameter of 0.67 meters, and a power rating of 120 kilowatts at tidal flows of 1.3 meters/second, to a 14 meter model with a 1.15 meter diameter turbine and a power rating of 850 kW at 1.7 m/s.

“It has been a long fight to get to the point where we are but when you have what we have, it is worth it,” Anders Jansson, CEO of Minesto, said in a statement. “This is a breakthrough for the entire renewable energy industry. We will produce renewable electricity with high reliability to a cost that will compete, or even be lower, than conventional energy sources.”That of course remains to be seen, and meanwhile there is a lot of competition in the in-stream tidal power game, like the crossflow turbine that Ocean Renawable Power Company has been testing off Maine and the Alstom tidal turbine demoing in Scotish waters. The concepts all have some merit, but proving their seaworthiness and economic viability, even with strong policy support, figures to be challenging – as Neptune Renewable Energy found out with the Proteus device that failed up to live up to expectations when tested in the Humber estuary.
Source: http://www.earthtechling.com

New technology to harness bay of Fundy tides

The Fundy Ocean Research Center for Energy (FORCE), Canada, in partnership with Nortek Scientific, Canada, announced the construction of the world’s first instrument to provide high-resolution, real time measurements of turbulent water flow at turbine hub height, called the Vectron. “The Vectron gives turbine developers the first true understanding of the unique tidal regime they must design for, vastly improving their odds of successful and efficient operation,” Tony Wright, director of marine operations at FORCE, said to a gathering of industry, government and scientific representatives at a conference hosted by Marine Renewables Canada in Ottawa. A leap forward in site characterization technology, the Vectron is able to capture highly accurate measurements of turbulence at a specific height above the sea over long periods of time - critical to understanding turbine performance.

“The Vectron could become a critical piece of the puzzle in developing tidal energy sites not only for the Bay of Fundy but around the world,” said Kai Koelmel VP of Siemens Hydro & Ocean, the owners of Marine Current Turbines Ltd. “The value and quality of the turbulence data it can provide tidal turbine designers will be unmatched.” Eric Siegel, Innovation Director for Nortek Scientific, said the Vectron is a breakthrough in accurately measuring tidal turbulence. The Vectron will be deployed on FORCE’s Fundy Advanced Sensor Technology (FAST) platform. The FAST platform is a recoverable instrument platform designed to monitor and characterize the FORCE site. Using a variety of onboard sensing equipment, the platform enables:

• Operation and testing of multiple underwater sensing instruments;
• New instrument improvements for success in high flow environments;
• New Canadian expertise in site characterization, instrumentation and deployment methods; and
• New standards for high-flow monitoring - a "black box" prototype for all tidal turbines.
Source: http://www.trurodaily.com

FUEL CELLS

Fuel cell that delivers performance at record low temperatures

Professor Fritz Prinz of the Nanoscale Prototyping Laboratory at Stanford School of Engineering, the United States, led a team of engineers that created a solid oxide fuel cell capable of delivering the most power-per-square inch yet developed, at record-low temperatures. The U.S. Department of Energy is interested in solid oxide fuel cells as clean energy sources for the future. Using domestic fuel sources, these fuel cells could support or replace large-scale, oil-driven energy production. For this to happen, the cells must be made to run more efficiently and at lower temperatures.

The Stanford team made a series of improvements to the critical solid oxide membrane. First, they made their membranes bumpy to increase the surface area that could shuttle oxygen ions. Then they made these bumpy surfaces bristle like sandpaper to further increase the potential points of contact between the solid oxide and the charged oxygen. Another improvement involved fabricating extraordinarily thin membranes to make it easier for ions to cross over to the fuel side. At a thickness of 60 nanometers, the membrane described in Nano Letters is roughly 200 times thinner than cellophane. The Stanford engineers added yet another feature to improve the efficiency of their fuel cell. They coated their membrane with a new catalyst designed to help usher ions into the membrane. Finally they gave this catalytic layer its own nano-bristles for the same reason they roughed up the surface of the membrane: to give oxygen ions more opportunities to become absorbed into the reaction.
Source: http://www.renewableenergymagazine.com

Using hydrogen as a fuel source

A team of scientists in the University of South Carolina (USC), the United States, has developed a robust, efficient method of using hydrogen as a fuel source. Hydrogen makes a great fuel because it can easily be converted to electricity in a fuel cell and because it is carbon-free. The downside of hydrogen is that, because it is a gas, it can only be stored in high pressure or cryogenic tanks. The research was published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society. In a vehicle with a tank full of hydrogen, "if you got into a wreck, you'd have a problem," said Travis Williams, assistant professor of chemistry at the USC Dornsife College. A possible solution is to store hydrogen in a safe chemical form. Earlier this year, Williams and his team figured out a way to release hydrogen from an innocuous chemical material - a nitrogen-boron complex, ammonia borane - that can be stored as a stable solid.

Now the team has developed a catalyst system that releases enough hydrogen from its storage in ammonia borane to make it usable as a fuel source. Moreover, the system is air-stable and re-usable, unlike other systems for hydrogen storage on boron and metal hydrides. "Ours is the first game in town for reusable, air stabile ammonia borane dehydrogenation," Williams said, adding that the USC Stevens Institute is in the process of patenting the system. Contact: Robert Perkins, Tel: +1-213-740- 9226; E-mail: perkinsr@usc.edu.
Source: http://pressroom.usc.edu

Fuel cells for vehicles to reduce carbon emissions

A UK-based project, which draws on the skills of a group of UK- based companies, has demonstrated a significant increase in fuel cell system power density which moves the technology to deployment in low-carbon vehicles. The £2.8m development project, supported by government agency the Technology Strategy Board, is collaboration between Intelligent Energy, Dyson Technology, Ricardo and TRW Conekt. Fuel cells are seen as a promising way to reduce carbon emissions from road vehicles. For this to happen it is important to increase power density, reliability and cold-starting. According to Mark Garrett, Ricardo chief operating officer: "Fuel cells offer the prospect of an attractive future low carbon vehicle powertrain solution and are expected soon to be competitive against other advanced technologies for many current transport applications.

"The work used Loughborough-based Intelligent Energy's fuel cell engines and achieved an increase in power density of more than 30%. Power output was increased from 30kW to 40kW for the chosen test system without increasing system mass or size. Also a new coolant module was developed to achieve cold start at temperatures down to -20°C. Intelligent Energy improved the overall design and integration of the enhanced fuel cell system with Ricardo acting as the customer, providing an automotive specification and sign-off at the end of the project. TRW Conekt validated the fuel cell modules through vibration and environmental testing, helping to identify and prevent potential problems.
Source: http://www.electronicsweekly.com

HYDROGEN ENERGY

Researchers create a low-cost, long-lasting water splitter

Researchers from Stanford University, the United States, have developed an inexpensive device that uses light to split water into oxygen and clean-burning hydrogen. The goal is to supplement solar cells with hydrogen-powered fuel cells that can generate electricity when the sun isn’t shining or demand is high. The novel device, a silicon semiconductor coated in an ultrathin layer of nickel, could help pave the way for large- scale production of clean hydrogen fuel from sunlight, according to the scientists. “Solar cells only work when the sun is shining,” said study co-author Hongjie Dai, a professor of chemistry at Stanford. “When there’s no sunlight, utilities often have to rely on electricity from conventional power plants that run on coal or natural gas.” A greener solution, Dai explained, is to supplement the solar cells with hydrogen-powered fuel cells that generate electricity at night or when demand is especially high.

To produce clean hydrogen for fuel cells, scientists have turned to an emerging technology called water splitting. Two semiconducting electrodes are connected and placed in water. The electrodes absorb light and use the energy to split the water into its basic components, oxygen and hydrogen. The oxygen is released into the atmosphere, and the hydrogen is stored as fuel. “Silicon, which is widely used in solar cells, would be an ideal, low-cost material,” said Stanford graduate student Michael J. Kenney, co-lead author of the Science study. “But silicon degrades in contact with an electrolyte solution. In fact, a submerged electrode made of silicon corrodes as soon as the water-splitting reaction starts.” To find a low-cost alternative, Dai suggested that Kenney and his colleagues try coating silicon electrodes with ordinary nickel. “Nickel is corrosion-resistant,” Kenney said. “It’s also an active oxygen-producing catalyst, and it’s earth-abundant. That makes it very attractive for this type of application.”

The entire process is sustainable and emits no greenhouse gases. But finding a cheap way to split water has been a major challenge. Today, researchers continue searching for inexpensive materials that can be used to build water splitters efficient enough to be of practical use. Contact: Mike Kenney, Department of Chemistry, Stanford University, U. S. A. Tel: +1-602-670-9382; E-mail: mkenney2@stanford.edu.
Source: http://news.stanford.edu

Water splitting solar-thermal system to produce hydrogen fuel

Researchers from the University of Colorado, the United States, have designed a novel water splitting solar-thermal system to produce hydrogen fuel. This research is being funded by the National Science Foundation and by the U.S. Department of Energy and it will lay the foundations for the use of hydrogen as a green fuel. The simplified reaction sequence may also provide new opportunities to produce hydrogen fuel in space.

The system uses an array of mirrors to concentrate sunlight onto single point on a huge tower. This generates temperatures as high as 1,350 Celsius, which is then transferred to a reactor containing metal oxides. Due to the high temperature, the metal oxides release oxygen, forming a new compound which seeks out oxygen atoms. When steam is introduced to this compound, the oxygen from the steam adheres to the surface of the metal oxide, and freeing up the hydrogen from steam. “We have designed something here that is very different from other methods and frankly something that nobody thought was possible before,” said Alan Weimer a Professor from the University of Colorado Chemical and Biological Engineering department, Executive Director of the Colorado Center for Biorefining and Biofuels (C2B2), and research group leader. He added that, “Splitting water with sunlight is the Holy Grail of a sustainable hydrogen economy.”

“One of the key differences between the CU method and other methods developed to split water is the ability to conduct two chemical reactions at the same temperature,” said study co-author Charles Musgrave, a Professor from the Chemical and Biological Engineering department. “One of the big innovations in our system is that there is no swing in the temperature. The whole process is driven by either turning a steam valve on or off.” The challenge is to heat the metal oxides to the lowest possible temperature that enables the desired chemical reactions so that excess heat doesn’t cause any damage to the reactor or tower. The amount of hydrogen which can be produceddepends on the amount of metal oxides and steam.
Source: http://www.spacesafetymagazine.com

Storing hydrogen for fuel cell vehicles

In a recent paper in the American Institute of Physics journal APL Materials, a joint research group with members from the Japan Atomic Energy Agency (Hyogo, Japan) and Tohoku University (Sendai, Japan) announced that it had achieved the long- sought goal of a simple-structured, aluminum-based interstitial alloy. Their compound, Al2CuHx, was synthesized by hydrogenating Al2Cu at an extreme pressure of 10 gigapascals (1.5 million pounds per square inch) and a high temperature of 800 degrees Celsius (1,500 degrees Fahrenheit).

The researchers characterized the conditions of the hydrogenation reaction using in-situ synchrotron radiation X-ray diffraction measurement, while the crystal and electron structures of the compound formed were studied with powder X-ray diffraction measurement and first-principle calculations, respectively. Together, these examinations confirmed the first-ever formation of an interstitial hydride of an aluminum-based alloy.
Source: http://www.phys.org

New device harnesses sun and sewage to produce hydrogen fuel

A research team led by Yat Li, associate professor of chemistry at the University of California, Santa Cruz, the United States, developed the solar-microbial device and reported their results in a paper published in the American Chemical Society journal, ACS Nano. The hybrid device combines a microbial fuel cell (MFC) and a type of solar cell called a photoelectrochemical cell (PEC). In the MFC component, bacteria degrade organic matter in the wastewater, generating electricity in the process. The biologically generated electricity is delivered to the PEC component to assist the solar-powered splitting of water (electrolysis) that generates hydrogen and oxygen.

Microbial fuel cells rely on unusual bacteria, known as electrogenic bacteria that are able to generate electricity by transferring metabolically-generated electrons across their cell membranes to an external electrode. Li’s group collaborated with researchers at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) who have been studying electrogenic bacteria and working to enhance MFC performance. Initial “proof-of-concept” tests of the solar-microbial (PEC-MFC) device used a well- studied strain of electrogenic bacteria grown in the lab on artificial growth medium. Subsequent tests used untreated municipal wastewater from the Livermore Water Reclamation Plant. The wastewater contained both rich organic nutrients and a diverse mix of microbes that feed on those nutrients, including naturally occurring strains of electrogenic bacteria.
Source: http://www.news.ucsc.edu

Transforming impure hydrogen into electricity

Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE), Brookhaven National Laboratory, the United States have created a high-performing nanocatalyst that meets all these demands. The novel core-shell structure – ruthenium coated with platinum – resists damage from carbon monoxide as it drives the energetic reactions central to electric vehicle fuel cells and similar technologies.

“These nanoparticles exhibit perfect atomic ordering in both the ruthenium and platinum, overcoming structural defects that previously crippled carbon monoxide-tolerant catalysts,” said study coauthor and Brookhaven Lab chemist Jia Wang. “Our highly scalable, ‘green’ synthesis method, as revealed by atomic-scale imaging techniques, opens new and exciting possibilities for catalysis and sustainability.”

Catalysts inside fuel cells pry free the intrinsic energy of hydrogen molecules and convert it into electricity. Platinum performs exceptionally well with pure hydrogen fuel, but the high cost and rarity of the metal impedes its widespread deployment. By coating less expensive metals with thin layers of platinum atoms, however, scientists can retain reactivity while driving down costs and creating core-shell structures with superior performance parameters.
Source: http://www.bnl.gov

BIOFUEL/BIOMASS ENERGY

A breakthrough for marine biofuel production

Researchers at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at University of California, San Diego, the United States, have developed a method for greatly enhancing biofuel production in tiny marine algae. A significant roadblock in algal biofuel research surrounds the production of lipid oils, the fat molecules that store energy that can be produced for fuel. A catch-22 has stymied economically efficient biofuel production because algae mainly produce the desired lipid oils when they are starved for nutrients. Yet if they are limited in nutrients, they don’t grow well. With a robust diet algae grow well, but they produce carbohydrates instead of the desired lipids for fuel.

In a significant leap forward that clears the lipid production hurdle, Trentacoste and her colleagues used a data set of genetic expression (called “transcriptomics” in laboratories) to target a specific enzyme inside a group of microscopic algae known as diatoms (Thalassiosira pseudonana). By metabolically engineering a “knock-down” of fat-reducing enzymes called lipases, the researchers were able to increase lipids without compromising growth. The genetically altered strains they developed, the researchers say, could be produced broadly in other species.

“Scientifically this is a huge achievement,” said Mark Hildebrand, a marine biology professor at Scripps and a coauthor of the study. “Five years ago people said you would never be able to get more lipids without affecting growth negatively. This paper shows that there isn’t an intrinsic barrier and gives us hope of more new things that we can try – it opens the door to a lot more work to be done.”In addition to lowering the cost of biofuel production by increasing lipid content, the new method has led to advances in the speed of algal biofuel crop production due to the efficient screening process used in the new study.
Source: http://www.tgdaily.com

Portable biofuel from waste food

A team of scientists led by biophysicist Phil Laible in the Argonne National Laboratory, the United States, have developed bioengineered photosynthetic bacteria capable of producing an alcohol called phytol from a variety of sources, including wood pulp, leftover corn stalks, food waste, and latrine waste. Once separated from the fermentation broth, phytol serves as a surrogate for diesel fuel that can be used alone or in blends to power generators or vehicles.

With chemical and physical properties similar to diesel fuel, phytol is considered a “drop-in ready” biofuel, meaning it is ready to go directly into diesel engines and generators without any further refinement. With insight from US Air Force Fellow Matthew Michaud, the researchers incorporated this groundbreaking discovery into the design of the Endurance Bioenergy Reactor. The process begins in a large fermentation vessel tank; once it’s filled, the engineered organism begins converting waste to energy. The bacteria are freeze-dried and shipped along with the reactor hardware, so the operator can simply open the package of bacteria and drop them into the main tank. The reactor can use a variety of carbon and energy sources to make fuel.

A single reactor takes between two and four days to convert waste into fuel, but the system can be modified to generate fuel continually. The system can produce 25 to 50 gallons of biofuel a day. About a third of food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted globally – about 1.3 billion tons per year. With the Endurance Bioenergy Reactor they could turn some of that food into biofuels. This promising technology provides a viable alternative for military and civilians who need reliable power sources when they are not near a power grid. For military applications, the reactor prolongs operations, reduces costs, and improves safety by decreasing reliance on supply chains and eliminating dangerous convoy missions to deliver more fuel.
Source: http://www.mumbaimirror.com

Biodiesel created via microwave research

Research at the National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan (Province of China) has developed a microwave-based process which transforms waste cooking oils into biodiesel in 10 seconds. The team was led by the visiting Aharon Gedanken from the Department of Chemistry at Bar-Ilan University, Israel.

‘I was told Taiwanese people like to cook a lot but waste cooking oils are a problem for the environment. So we come up with an idea to combine a microwave and with a certain catalyst so that we can fully convert the waste into biodiesel efficiently,’ he says. ‘Everyone could do this, albeit at small- scale, in their own kitchens.’ The project is currently converting 100 kg of waste oil a day but Gedanken believes that figure can eventually move into tons.
Source: http://www.biofuels-news.com

Scientists separate the ‘fattest’ algae for biodiesel production

Algae are interesting candidates for the large-scale production of biodiesel. Researchers at TU Delft, the Netherlands, have developed a way of finding the fattest and therefore the most suitable examples among all the many species of algae. “The ultimate goal of our research is to make oil-producing algae as fat as possible, then press the oil out of them and finally produce biodiesel suitable for cars from this oil,” explains PhD student Peter Mooij of TU Delft.

A major threat to the stable cultivation of oil-producing algae is infection by other, thinner algae. One option is to use a sealed cultivation system and keep unwanted algae out of the system by means of sterilization. Although this is theoretically possible, it would be practically infeasible and extremely expensive to do this on a large scale.

Algae produce oil to store carbon and energy. Energy and carbon are useful to them during the long sunless periods or if it is cold. However, algae also need energy and carbon for their cell division and to extract nutrients such as phosphate and nitrogen from the water.’ Mooij took this fact as his starting point. “The principle works as follows: we go to the nearest pond and fill a test tube with algae. Back in the lab, we put the tube in a reactor. Then we provide the algae with light and CO2 during the day. This is enough for them to produce oil; however they are unable to divide. They need nutrients for cell division and we only give them these in the dark. To absorb the nutrients, they use energy and carbon. This means that only the fattest algae can divide, as they have stored energy and carbon during the day. By removing some of the algae every day, the culture will eventually exist of only the fattest algae; survival of the fattest!” Using a test reactor, Mooij and his colleagues have now demonstrated for the first time that this principle really works.
Source: http://www.dailyfusion.net

Creating bio-oil from wood chips

Engineers and scientists from Battelle, the United States, have developed a mobile device that transforms unwanted biomass materials such as wood chips or agricultural waste into valuable bio-oil using catalytic pyrolysis. As currently configured, the Battelle-funded unit converts one ton of pine chips, shavings and sawdust into as much as 130 gallons of wet bio-oil per day. This intermediate bio-oil then can be upgraded by hydro- treatment into a gas/diesel blend or jet fuel. Conversion of the bio-oil to an advanced biofuel is a key element of Battelle’s research. Extensive testing of the bio-based gasoline alternative produced by Battelle suggests that it can be blended with existing gasoline and can help fuel producers meet their renewable fuel requirements.

An alternative use of Battelle’s bio-oil is its conversion to a bio-polyol that can be substituted in chemical manufacturing for polyols derived from petroleum. Battelle’s bio-polyols have been validated by a third-party polyurethane producer as a viable alternative. Battelle is evaluating this one-ton-per-day system at its West Jefferson, Ohio, facility. The pilot-scale system is the culmination of Battelle’s second-stage development of the mobile pyrolysis technology. In the first stage, which took place over the past four years, Battelle created a bench-scale machine that converted 50 pounds of woody waste per day, demonstrating the novel concept.

Currently, Battelle experts are using mainly pine waste in the transportable pyrolysis unit, although the high-tech machine can be modified to use other types of unwanted agricultural field residue known as stranded biomass, in-cluding corn stover, switch grass and miscanthus. Because of its small size, the pyrolysis unit is installed on the trailer of a flat-bed 18-wheel truck, making it mobile and thus transportable to the waste products. This feature makes it ideal to access the woody biomass that is often left stranded in agricultural regions, far away from industrial facilities.
Source: www.biodieselmagazine.com

RECENT PUBLICATIONS

Biofuel Technologies: Recent Developments

Biofuels are considered to be the main potential replacement for fossil fuels in the near future. In this book international experts present recent advances in biofuel research and related technologies. Topics include biomethane and biobutanol production, microbial fuel cells, feedstock production, biomass pre-treatment, enzyme hydrolysis, genetic manipulation of microbial cells and their application in the biofuels industry, bioreactor systems, and economical processing technologies for biofuel residues. The chapters provide concise information to help understand the technology-related implications of biofuels development.

Contact: Springer Customer Service Center, Haberstr. 7, 69129 Heidelberg, Germany; Tel: +49-622- 134-50; Fax: +49-622-1345-4229; E-mail: orders- HD- booksellers@springer.com

Wind Energy: Renewable Energy and the Environment, 2nd Edition

Wind Energy: Renewable Energy and the Environment, 2nd Edition, considers the viability of wind as an alternative renewable energy source. This book examines the wind industry from its start in the 1970s until now, and introduces all aspects of wind energy. The phenomenal growth of wind power for utilities is covered along with applications such as wind-diesel, village power, telecommunications, and street lighting. It covers the characteristics of wind, such as shear, power potential, turbulence, wind resource, wind turbine types, and designs and performance. The text discusses the measurement and siting of individual wind turbines, and considers the development and economic impact of wind farms.

Principles of Sustainable Energy Systems, 2nd Edition

Completely revised and updated, Principles of Sustainable Energy Systems, 2nd Edition, presents broad-based coverage of sustainable energy sources and systems. The book is designed as a text for undergraduate seniors and first-year graduate students. It focuses on renewable energy technologies, but also treats current trends such as the expanding use of natural gas from cracking and development of nuclear power. It covers the economics of sustainable energy, both from a traditional monetary as well as from an energy return on energy invested (EROI) perspective.

For the above two books, contact: CRC Press; Tel: +44-123-540-0524; Fax: +44-123-540-0525; E-mail: book.orders@tandf.co.uk


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