Archive for June 5th, 2010

Jobs In Solar: Solar/PV Sales (Ramsey County MN)
Date: 2010-06-04, 8:05AM CDT
Reply to: dave@jeiwind.com

Identify property owners and present benefits of Solar/PV , Secure interest and schedule Solar assessments for potential buyers, Submit contract for the installation of same.
952-201-0396

Location: Ramsey County MN

  • Compensation: Percentage of total installation
  • This is a contract job.
  • OK to highlight this job opening for persons with disabilities
  • Principals only. Recruiters, please don’t contact this job poster.
  • Phone calls about this job are ok.
  • Please do not contact job poster about other services, products or commercial interests.

 


Visit the original post at: Solar Power News

Solar Shortages Looming With Boom in Worldwide Demand

First Solar, the world’s cheapest solar panel maker, is reporting that they cannot meet this years demand for solar panels, and three more major manufacturers; Suntech, Yingli and Trina are also signaling that they are sold out, according to Reuters.

This is a huge turnabout. It is only a year ago that solar panels flooded the global market, driving down the cost of solar installations worldwide, after Spain suddenly eased off on its generous Feed-in Tariff, leading to a worldwide solar panel glut and a resulting 40% drop in panel prices.

The benefits of that suddenly cheap solar has had a huge impact. California alone installed as much solar in the first three months as it did in all of last year, at least in part due to cheap panels.

But now it appears that prices might rise again, due to ricocheting demand. (more…)


Visit the original post at: Energy News

America Needs a Building Code in the Climate Bill


The House version of the climate bill, Waxman-Markey’s ACES included a national building code (Section 201, page 214) which would have led to a 75% reduction in national energy use from buildings. Yet it is not in the Senate’s climate and clean energy bill, the recently unveiled American Power Act.

Seven states leak greenhouse gases (and the wealth of their residents) simply because they do not have any energy-efficiency building codes. When there are no requirements, builders, who have to compete with other builders locally, have to cut corners too, to be competitive on upfront price. It becomes a race for the bottom.

As a result, in those states with no building codes; the same square feet of house need twice or more the kilowatt-hours of electricity (or btu’s of home-heating fossil fuels) to provide the same level of civilized living inside them as do houses in states with high efficiency requirements, because they are simply throwing energy out the door (and the roof, and the walls and the windows).

And it is not clean energy being tossed out the window, in most of these states. Most of the states that eschew building codes are also the states dependent on the dirtiest energy as well, that are responsible for raising the average US coal use to 45%.

For example, Wyoming is 95% coal powered and the average home uses 1,000 kwh a month of coal powered electricity. 31% of homes are heated with electricity or other heavy emissions fossil fuels and 64% with natural gas. (more…)


Visit the original post at: Energy News

San Diego Vaults into Solar Energy and Green Jobs Future

Solar energy leaders Sanyo Electric and Kyocera have announced major solar energy and green jobs ventures in San Diego Two of the world’s solar energy leaders have just announced major plans to bring new solar energy technology and green jobs to San Diego. The Sanyo Electric group has embarked on a three year, $3 million partnership with the University of California, San Diego on next-generation solar energy systems and management, and in a separate development, solar cell efficiency wizard Kyocera has started up a solar module manufacturing plant in the city, aiming to produce about 30 megawatts annually.

As an interesting twist, the news comes shortly after Arizona, in a move reminiscent of Russia’s notorious natural gas cutoff to Europe, recently threatened to cut off power to southern California in a dispute over Arizona’s dubious new immigration law.  We all know that solar energy and other rewnewables will cut our dependence on foreign oil, but the long term impact of localized, sustainable energy production on relations between the 50 United States is only just emerging. (more…)


Visit the original post at: Energy News

Solar Powered Fridges Have Huge Impact on Struggling Villages in Swaziland
swaziland.jpg
photo: J. Novak

Swaziland is one of the poorest and most rural nations in the world. Most of the villages have no running water, electricity, or refrigerators. But a new innovation is serving to make life a lot more manageable for rural families in Swaziland. The communal building in many of the villages now has a solar powered fridge. See how these responsible refrigerators are impacting many African villages…. Read the full story on TreeHugger
Visit the original post at: TreeHugger

Solar Powered Fridges Have Huge Impact on Struggling Villages in Swaziland
swaziland.jpg
photo: J. Novak

Swaziland is one of the poorest and most rural nations in the world. Most of the villages have no running water, electricity, or refrigerators. But a new innovation is serving to make life a lot more manageable for rural families in Swaziland. The communal building in many of the villages now has a solar powered fridge. See how these responsible refrigerators are impacting many African villages…. Read the full story on TreeHugger
Visit the original post at: TreeHugger

Solar Powered Fridges Have Huge Impact on Struggling Villages in Swaziland
swaziland.jpg
photo: J. Novak

Swaziland is one of the poorest and most rural nations in the world. Most of the villages have no running water, electricity, or refrigerators. But a new innovation is serving to make life a lot more manageable for rural families in Swaziland. The communal building in many of the villages now has a solar powered fridge. See how these responsible refrigerators are impacting many African villages…. Read the full story on TreeHugger
Visit the original post at: TreeHugger

In Chicago, A Fashion Show Satisfies Our Love for Recycled Textiles (and Our Sweet Tooth, Too) [Photos]
M M Dress photo
From afar it looks like just another golden hued evening gown but up close it’s hundreds of M&M wrappers–yum! Image courtesy of EarthShare Illinois

We’re no strangers to green fashion in Chicago; Designers Vaute Couture, Frei Designs, and Mountains of the Moon</a… Read the full story on TreeHugger
Visit the original post at: TreeHugger

In Chicago, A Fashion Show Satisfies Our Love for Recycled Textiles (and Our Sweet Tooth, Too) [Photos]
M M Dress photo
From afar it looks like just another golden hued evening gown but up close it’s hundreds of M&M wrappers–yum! Image courtesy of EarthShare Illinois

We’re no strangers to green fashion in Chicago; Designers Vaute Couture, Frei Designs, and Mountains of the Moon</a… Read the full story on TreeHugger
Visit the original post at: TreeHugger

In Chicago, A Fashion Show Satisfies Our Love for Recycled Textiles (and Our Sweet Tooth, Too) [Photos]
M M Dress photo
From afar it looks like just another golden hued evening gown but up close it’s hundreds of M&M wrappers–yum! Image courtesy of EarthShare Illinois

We’re no strangers to green fashion in Chicago; Designers Vaute Couture, Frei Designs, and Mountains of the Moon</a… Read the full story on TreeHugger
Visit the original post at: TreeHugger

NETL Soliciting Projects in Unconventional Fossil Energy and CO2-EOR Research for $9.7M in Funding

The US Department of Energy National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) is soliciting (DE-FOA-0000312) research projects in unconventional fossil energy and CO2-enhanced oil recovery (CO2-EOR) for up to $9.7 million in funding. NETL expects to select between 6-11 projects resulting from the solicitation.

NETL is seeking projects in FY10 that focus on two topic areas:

  1. advanced simulation and visualization capabilities to enhance production and minimize environmental impacts associated with the development of domestic unconventional resources; and

  2. advanced, next-generation carbon dioxide enhanced oil recovery (CO2-EOR).

The objective of the FOA is to fund research that results in proof-of-concept and technology ready for field and/or commercial application.

Research under Topic Area 1 is expected to result in modules that can be integrated into existing commercial and/or field-ready applications or can be used as stand-alone tools, processes, algorithms, etc. Any source code developed under this topic area will be made available to the public with user-friendly operating documentation and without restriction (this does not include enhancements to existing commercial software that is intended to be provided as a service to the public).

The objective of Topic Area 2 research is to advance “next-generation” carbon-dioxide enhanced oil recovery technology to the point where it is ready for pilot scale testing. Next-generation technologies include, but are not limited to:

  • Methods for improving the mobility ratio through applications such as: CO2 thickeners, CO2 foams, improved water soluble polymers, and innovative water-alternating-gas (WAG) injection schemes.

  • Methods for improving sweep efficiency by using nanoparticles for long term stabilization of foams and emulsions that can selectively control CO2 mobility.

  • Methods to allow miscible flooding of additional target reservoirs by extending crude oil-CO2 miscibility [lowering the minimum miscibility pressure (MMP)].

  • New approaches to the optimization of flood design through application of improved measures such as targeted horizontal wells, new well alignment and infill drilling.

  • Real time data acquisition/diagnostics tools to monitor and control flood performance.

  • Methods for increasing recovery of oil from the residual oil zone through improved flood design or other technologies or techniques.

Most oil resources have been produced using primary and secondary recovery techniques, with an average recovery factor estimated at 35%. Additional recovery is possible by using innovative EOR techniques. One of these techniques, CO2 miscible flooding [continuous or water-alternating gas (WAG)] is the fastest growing EOR process in the US, due to the existence of many reservoirs amenable to this process, according to NETL.

Current production is close to 272,000 bpd, representing approximately 5% of total US oil output. Currently, the CO2-EOR process is limited by technology, cost, and geographic availability of CO2. Technology improvements are needed to increase the displacement efficiency of the process. Next generation CO2-EOR technologies can increase the total volume of technically recoverable domestic oil by 30 billion barrels to an estimated 78 billion barrels for eleven areas studied, according to NETL.


Visit the original post at: Transportation News

EADS to Showcase Hybrid Helicopter and Algal Aviation Fuel at 2010 ILA Berlin Airshow

EADS will showcase a diesel-electric hybrid helicopter concept and aviation biofuel made from algae at the 2010 ILA Berlin Airshow next week at Berlin-Schönefeld Airport.

Hybrid helicopter concept. A full-scale model of a conceptual helicopter with a diesel-electric hybrid propulsion system displays EADS Innovation Works’ research towards more efficient propulsion system solutions for future small helicopters. Fuel consumption and emissions can be considerably reduced by the hybrid propulsion technology.

EADS Innovation Works exhibits will be complemented by selected displays of Eurocopter’s environmentally friendly “bluecopter” technologies. These include the Blue Edge main rotor blade, which provides a passive reduction in noise levels, using a double-swept shape different from present-day blades. The piezo-active rotor control system called Blue Pulse has the primary objective of reducing noise levels generated by the interference of the rotor blade tip vortices from one rotor blade with the following blades.

Algal fuels. EADS sees algae as a promising source of sustainable jet fuel, because biofuels from algae offer the potential of sufficient life-cycle carbon-dioxide reductions to eventually replace petroleum-based jet fuel. In the long term, microalgae can be produced in sufficiently large quantities in closed bioreactors without competing with food production for land and water, EADS asserts.

EADS research shows that all necessary technologies to develop the production of biofuel from algae are known, but to achieve economies of scale in the production of algae fuel industrial requires further development. EADS is working with partners on a pilot project to develop the necessary industrial infrastructure.

EADS Innovation Works will exhibit a containerized photo-bioreactor made by IGV GmbH as an example for advanced algae cultivation. Another exhibit explains the process chain from live algae fed with carbon dioxide through harvesting, drying, oil extraction and refining to the biofuel used by future aircraft.


Visit the original post at: Transportation News

Canada Launches Algal Biofuels Project

The government of Canada is awarding approximately C$5 million (US$4.7 million) to a project to produce fuels on a large scale from algae grown in Nova Scotia. Speaking in Halifax, the Honorable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology), made the announcement at the launch of the algal biofuel project at the National Research Council Institute for Marine Biosciences (NRC-IMB).

The project received its funding through the National Bioproducts Program and NRC-IMB. Additional resources of approximately C$1.2M are being provided by both monetary and in-kind contributions through industrial and organizational partners. Preliminary work and engineering plans have been drawn up to build a 50,000 liter (13,209 gallon US) cultivation pilot plant at the Ketch Harbour facility. A main component to help the algae grow will be carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel combustion.

Carbon2Algae (C2A)
C2A has been licensed to use an ultra-efficient gas infusion technology for the transfer of CO2 into liquids for algae feedstock and to remove oxygen that can become toxic to algae.
inVentures Technologies developed and patented the system and is one of the owners of C2A. The Aquasea Group has developed and provisionally patented proven high yield algae growth/harvest technologies which have been licensed to C2A.
C2A also has the rights to an organic removal technology from Mitton Valve Technology

(which harnesses cavitation) to assist in lipid extraction and has a provisional patent on another mechanical process.

For dewatering the company has agreements in place with two technology providers and, through inVentures, has access to an organic sieve technology for removing water from the algae oil.
Combined, the technologies create a unique process system for capturing CO2, growing algae and producing bio-fuels and secondary high value products.

In the project, NRC is collaborating with a number of industrial partners, including Ocean Nutrition Canada in Halifax; Menova Energy Inc. of Markham, Ontario; POS Pilot Plant from Saskatoon; and the international consortium Carbon2Algae Solutions (C2A).

Carbon2Algae eventually plans to operate algae photobioreactors that will capture carbon dioxide from facilities such as the Alberta oil sands or coal-fired power plants, and use these emissions to allow local strains of algae to thrive.

Although in time it is possible a biofuel production facility could operate in conjunction with a fossil fuel power generating station, the immediate challenge for project researchers is to find the best biofuel producing species and to develop small pilot plants that can move studies beyond the laboratory. In parallel, scientists are also working to develop technology to effectively extract the oil.

Researchers at the Marine Research Station in Ketch Harbour, Nova Scotia, have been growing algae for more than 50 years. In assessing how best to grow algae for biofuel, NRC has joined forces with the United States Department of Energy, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Colorado and Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico.

Sixty-four species of algae have been collected and studied so far by the algal biofuels project. Twenty-four of these species have been brought into cultivation and a half dozen with exceptional oil yields are under intensive scrutiny.

Dr. Stephen O’Leary, an NRC researcher working on the project, forecasts that commercial production of algal biofuels is likely in another five to 10 years. The project will ultimately join forces with NRC aerospace expertise to work toward commercializing algal biofuel, among other projects.

We’re asking plants to do what they do best. With little more than water and carbon dioxide, algae can harvest sunlight and turn it into energy that could eventually be used to create jet fuel.

— Dr. O’Leary

A key component distinguishing the National Research Council algal biofuel project from other international efforts is the focus on identifying local strains of algae that are suitable for biofuel production from specific sites in North America. The local species are already acclimatized to the environment, making them easier to grow, and avoiding the risks of importing foreign species that might accidentally be released into the environment.

The National Bioproducts Program is a joint initiative of NRC, Natural Resources Canada and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. It is intended to have an impact on Canada’s priority areas—environment, sustainable energy and rural revitalization—and plans to achieve this by developing and commercializing targeted technologies.


Visit the original post at: Transportation News

Sasol and University of Pretoria Collaborating on Synthetic Fuel Research

A research collaboration between South Africa-based Sasol and the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at the University of Pretoria (UP) has led to the commissioning of high-tech equipment to gain better insights into the properties and performance of synthetic diesel fuels.

The new LECO Pegasus 4 GCxGC-TOFMS (comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatograph combined with a time-of-flight mass spectrometer) has been commissioned at UP’s Separation Science Laboratory in the Department of Chemistry to gain better insight into the influence of trace components in synthetic diesel, and the application of such fuels in engines, turbines, and other devices.

The acquisition of this expensive equipment was made possible by financial support from Sasol Technology through joint research interest in the chemistry that underpins the physical properties of diesel fuels. The ability to obtain such chemical insight has only become feasible through the extreme analytical power of the GCxGC-TOFMS instrument, allowing for the identification and classification of thousands of compounds.

The initiative forms part of Sasol’s University collaboration initiative, a long-term program that supports the core objectives of world-class teaching and research capacity in Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at selected South African Universities. This program was initiated a few years ago and is already successfully established, using the framework of a hub-and-spoke collaboration philosophy, at several SA Universities.

Although the program is primarily designed to protect Sasol’s competitive advantage of doing R&D in SA, it will have significant spin-offs benefiting South Africa in general, according to the company.

One important area related to Sasol’s fuels and lubricants research is the rheological (study of the flow of substances under various conditions) and physical behavior of its synthetic fuels. The LECO Pegasus 4 GCxGC-TOFMS will enable scientists to make much more detailed analyses of how the more than 100 compounds that make up synthetic diesel fuel contribute to the likes of performance, viscosity, and lubricity of these fuels. This area of research is known as tribology.

With the rapid changes in engine technologies globally, it is important to fully characterize the composition of these fuels in order to exploit their unique benefits and understand their rheological behavior, according to Sasol.

The ability to identify specific chemical compounds in extremely complicated mixtures will also help the University of Pretoria in other non-petrochemical research fields, including air and water pollution, forensic toxicology, and aroma analysis. In all these areas the LECO GCxGC-TOFMS will be used in combination with other unique analytical instrumentation and techniques developed at the UP Separation Science laboratories.


Visit the original post at: Transportation News

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