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etienne

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2500 on: February 05, 2018, 11:00:40 PM »
I still don't get the economics of this relative to utility-scale. It seems like a great idea for social justice though, so I'm all for it.

There's no way the installation process is going to be cheaper on a house than on a plot of land out in the country. When you're setting up megawatts in a field, it's pretty simple. Setting up kilowatts on each of thousands of homes is a lot more fiddly work, each project similar but slightly different.

For the economical side, I don't know, but from a smart grid and technical point of view it is very interesting. You don't need cooling for the inverters, you don't have problems in case of failure because only few kW and concerned, you have people who are worried about making some money so they check regularely if it works properly, you don't use agricultural land for energy production... I don't think that it helps anything regarding power transportation cables because maximum loads often don't match with maximum consumption time. I just checked a refrigerated building today where a 120 kWc installation would have only reduce of 30 kW the peak consumption of the building last year. The issue is that we had a hot cloudy evening in July last year, so we had a high consumption around 6-7 pm with a low production.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2501 on: February 06, 2018, 03:21:28 PM »
Renewables taking a bite out of fossil fuel business.

Tesla’s giant battery in Australia is already eating away at ‘gas cartel’s’ profits, report says
Quote
When an issue happens or maintenance is required on the power grid in Australia, the Energy Market Operator calls for FCAS (frequency control and ancillary services) which consists of large and costly gas generators kicking in to compensate for the loss of power.

These services are so costly that it can sometimes amount to up to $7 million per day – or 10 times the regular value of the energy delivered.

Electricity rates can be seen reaching $14,000 per MW during those FCAS periods.

Now Renewecomy reports that FCAS were required on January 14, but the prices didn’t skyrocket to $14,000 per MW and they instead were maintained at around $270/MW after a short spike.

The bidding of Tesla’s 100MW/ 129MWh Powerpack project in South Australia on the services is credited with escaping the price hike, which would have cost energy generator and consumers millions in costs.

The Powerpack system is able to switch from charging to discharging in a fraction of a second, which allows Neoen, the operator of the system, to quickly respond when frequency issues happen. ...
https://electrek.co/2018/02/06/tesla-giant-battery-australia-gas-cartels-profit-report/
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sidd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2502 on: February 08, 2018, 11:18:17 PM »

TerryM

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2503 on: February 08, 2018, 11:49:56 PM »
Canada sues over solar tariffs:

http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/372980-canadian-solar-companies-sue-trump-over-tariffs

sidd


We'll sue. We'll win. They won't pay.
Check any of the soft lumber disputes.


And the US worries about "Rogue Nations".
Terry

Mathiasdm

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2504 on: February 09, 2018, 07:15:33 AM »
Canada sues over solar tariffs:

http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/372980-canadian-solar-companies-sue-trump-over-tariffs

sidd


We'll sue. We'll win. They won't pay.
Check any of the soft lumber disputes.


And the US worries about "Rogue Nations".
Terry

Don't worry, the EU will fix it, like they did last time.

BenB

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2505 on: February 09, 2018, 10:22:49 AM »
Not sure whether this belongs under renewables, but as intermittency is frequently cited as the main problem with renewables, and capacity auctions are designed to mitigate that, I figure it may as well go here.

The UK just held its capacity market auction for 2021/2022, and the clearning price was £8/kw/ year. 50 GW of capacity was auctioned, so the overall price is ~£400 million. Given that total annual electricity generation is around 280 million MWh, that is equivalent to ~£1.5/MWh. So the cost of backing up renewables in the UK seems fairly affordable. For more details:

https://www.emrdeliverybody.com/Capacity%20Markets%20Document%20Library/Provisional%20T-4%20Results%20DY%202021-22.pdf

Unsurprisingly, most of the capacity contracts were awarded to gas, some to nuclear, some to coal, some to interconnectors, some to demand-side-response, etc.

numerobis

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2506 on: February 09, 2018, 05:57:22 PM »
"total annual electricity generation is around 280 million MWh" -- where do you get this figure?

Some of these have negative generation (the storage options), so I'm dubious that the GBP 1.50/MWh figure is valid.

A tiny fraction went to batteries -- about 150 MW. Which would have been considered to be a huge amount a couple years ago.

BenB

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2507 on: February 10, 2018, 09:04:11 AM »
For total generation, see: http://www.ref.org.uk/fuel/index.php?tab=year&share=N

They have 268 million MWh, but that doesn't include solar and embedded wind, so I upped it a bit. I imagine I'm within a couple of percent of the actual number, which is more than good enough for these purposes. In any case, the number will be different in 2021, but we can't know that yet.

For my calculation, it doesn't matter whether the capacity auction is won by negative or positive capacity, as I'm looking at the overall cost to the electric power system of ensuring that "the lights stay on". So my average cost is the average cost to the electric power system per MWh it generates over the course of the year. The 1.5£ per MWh is 0.15p per kwh, so a percent or so of the end user's bill.

Of course you can argue about the exact cost, but the point is really to show that when people say "you don't know when the wind is going to blow, so the power it produces is worthless, because you have to back it up", that's not true, as there's actually a low, measurable cost of guaranteeing supply. And of course many people argue that these capacity auctions are unnecessary, as we'd have enough available capacity without them. So in some ways it's a worst case scenario cost. And obviously it isn't just backing up renewables.

numerobis

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2508 on: February 10, 2018, 03:31:53 PM »
The total energy used by the grid annually isn’t really relevant. What matters in this kind of auction is the peak power. That’s why storage can win these auctions, whereas wind or PV can’t.

BenB

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2509 on: February 11, 2018, 08:27:26 AM »
The total energy used by the grid annually isn’t really relevant. What matters in this kind of auction is the peak power. That’s why storage can win these auctions, whereas wind or PV can’t.

Of course what is being auctioned is peak power, and the cost of that is the £8 per Mw per year as I said originally. But I'm trying to give an idea of what that translates into in relation to the overall costs of the electric power system. Put simply, those are generation costs (spot price and/or ppa price x amount generated) + transmission and distribution costs + capacity auction to ensure system never is unable to meet demand  + taxes, margins, etc.

To make that comparison, you have to look at overall generation per year, because this capacity auction is for a year, and the price is stated in Mw per year.

oren

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2510 on: February 11, 2018, 09:40:08 AM »
BenB, I understand what you're saying but bear in mind that once most energy is supplied by renewables, there will be many fossil plants that will be shuttered, and then the capacity auctions might not end with similar prices. Currently those who bid in the capacity auctions make money from selling normal energy production as well.
Everything is solvable, but it would be wrong to extrapolate from the current situation to a wholly different situation.

BenB

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2511 on: February 11, 2018, 12:10:27 PM »
BenB, I understand what you're saying but bear in mind that once most energy is supplied by renewables, there will be many fossil plants that will be shuttered, and then the capacity auctions might not end with similar prices. Currently those who bid in the capacity auctions make money from selling normal energy production as well.
Everything is solvable, but it would be wrong to extrapolate from the current situation to a wholly different situation.

Well, of course the prices may go up, but the capacity auction is for 2021/22, so already some years in the future. And the backers of the capacity auctions say that they are needed precisely to keep power stations open that would otherwise be shuttered because they wouldn't be used enough over the course of the year. But even if prices were to quadruple, for the sake of argument, they would still be very much affordable within the context of the overall cost of generating power and distributing it to end users. And while some gas power stations will no doubt be shuttered, options like demand response and batteries will become cheaper, and new international interconnectors are coming online (interconnectors already won a significant proportion of the auction).

gerontocrat

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2512 on: February 11, 2018, 12:17:55 PM »
NEVADA 1 GIGAWATT SOLAR ENERGY PROJECT

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-02-09/cheap-solar-makes-a-big-bet-in-nevada

Quote
Swiss asset manager Capital Dynamics AG will build a one-gigawatt portfolio of solar farms in Nevada, one of the largest such projects in the U.S., with technology infrastructure company Switch Inc. as an “anchor tenant.” The two companies expect the cost of power generated by Gigawatt 1 to be significantly lower than what the local utility charges.
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gerontocrat

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2513 on: February 12, 2018, 03:46:52 PM »
In Australia, despite the Federal Government's addiction to coal (and gas), solar power is happening fast.

Quote
Australia's solar power boom could almost double capacity in a year, analysts say
Solar farm approvals and record rooftop installations expected to ‘turbo-boost’ production
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/feb/11/australias-solar-power-boom-could-almost-double-capacity-in-a-year-analysts-say
"Para a Causa do Povo a Luta Continua!"
"And that's all I'm going to say about that". Forrest Gump
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2514 on: February 12, 2018, 09:42:00 PM »
Iceland’s green energy cred has attracted Bitcoin mining operations.

“In Iceland, bitcoin mining is now on track to use more electricity than all homes combined in 2018.
There are so many proposed data centers that it won't be possible to supply power to all of them, according to local officials.”
    https://twitter.com/ericholthaus/status/963149730841731072

Bitcoin energy use in Iceland set to overtake homes, says local firm
http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-43030677
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Ken Feldman

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2515 on: February 13, 2018, 11:35:47 PM »
Solar plus battery storage is now cheaper than natural gas in Arizona:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-02-12/a-powerful-mix-of-solar-and-batteries-is-beating-natural-gas

Quote
Natural gas is getting edged out of power markets across the U.S. by two energy sources that, together, are proving to be an unbeatable mix: solar and batteries.

In just the latest example, First Solar Inc. won a power contract to supply Arizona’s biggest utility when electricity demand on its system typically peaks, between 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. The panel maker beat out bids from even power plants burning cheap gas by proposing to build a 65-megawatt solar farm that will, in turn, feed a 50-megawatt battery system.

It’s a powerful combination for meeting peak demand because of when the sun shines. Here’s how it’ll work: The panels will generate solar power when the sun’s out to charge the batteries. The utility will draw on those batteries as the sun starts to set and demand starts to rise.

Just last week, NextEra Energy Inc.’s Florida utility similarly installed a battery system that’ll back up a solar farm and boost generation. In California, regulators have called on PG&E Corp. to use batteries or other non-fossil fuel resources instead of supplies from gas-fired plants to meet peak demand.

numerobis

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2516 on: February 14, 2018, 09:57:40 PM »
Do you have a cite on the price? The story says solar+battery won but doesn’t say it was cheapest, just “competitive”.

Ken Feldman

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2517 on: February 14, 2018, 10:26:49 PM »
Do you have a cite on the price? The story says solar+battery won but doesn’t say it was cheapest, just “competitive”.

They didn't announce a price.  More details are available here:

https://www.utilitydive.com/news/aps-to-install-50-mw-135-mwh-solar-shifting-battery/516850/

Here is some cost information from other recent solar plus battery projects cited in the article:

Quote
The APS project comes on the heels of a pair of high-profile solar-plus-storage projects announced last year. In January, a Hawaii co-op signed a deal for a 28 MW solar array with a 100 MWh battery system for $0.11/kWh, below the retail rate of electricity there. And in May, Tucson Electric Power signed a deal for 100 MW of solar and a 120 MWh battery for "significantly less than $0.045/kWh over 20 years," the lowest publicly available price for such a project.

APS did not release pricing information for its new project, but charging the battery mostly with solar power could allow it to qualify for a 30% federal investment tax credit for solar facilities.

numerobis

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2518 on: February 15, 2018, 04:25:10 AM »
The Colorado auction had solar+battery bids well below the Phoenix deal, about 0.35/kWh.

This auction sounds like the winning bid didn’t win entirely on price, but were close enough for monopoly work. Parity is very near, and the natural gas dissipates fast.

BenB

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2519 on: February 15, 2018, 11:56:38 AM »
Europe installed record amounts of wind power last year (16.8 GW of installed capacity),
 but there are fears that this will decline sharply over the coming years:

https://www.windpowermonthly.com/article/1456946/race-beat-auctions-sees-european-capacity-grow-20

In 2017, wind energy covered 11.6% of the EU’s electricity demand, generating 336 TWh, up from just under 300 TWh in 2016:

https://windeurope.org/about-wind/statistics/european/wind-in-power-2017/

WindEurope's full annual report can be found here:

https://windeurope.org/wp-content/uploads/files/about-wind/statistics/WindEurope-Annual-Statistics-2017.pdf

Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2520 on: February 15, 2018, 04:23:02 PM »
Progress!  Technology many people didn’t think was possible even a few years ago.

Tesla to partner with NY utility company on battery storage system
Quote
If approved, O&R expects the NY battery storage system to earn up to $788,000 annually. From these earnings, 90% of the wholesale market revenue will be given to O&R to offset the project’s cost, while the remaining 10% will be given to Tesla. Overall, the Edison Consolidated utility provider remains optimistic about the proposed battery storage system.

“When energy storage is deployed for multiple value streams, the amount of value and revenue generated on a per unit basis increases to capture previously idle storage capacity for productive use. This additional revenue means that multi-use applications of energy storage can be economically viable in locations where single-use applications are not,” the utility provider stated, according to the APPA.
https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-con-edison-utility-new-york-powerpack-battery-system/
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sidd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2521 on: February 16, 2018, 02:00:12 AM »
Beautiful work on power from ambient temperature variations. They coupled a phase change material with a high thermal conductivity foam, stored heat energy in the phase change material and harvested it via thermocouple.

doi: 10.1038/s41467-018-03029-x

Tiny amount of energy so far, microwatt per sq. cm. of surface, but thats milliwatts from a meter size install. Wonder if they can extend the concept to seasonal variation.

Open access. Read all about it.

sidd

Ken Feldman

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2522 on: February 16, 2018, 10:45:48 PM »
Here's another story on batteries plus solar replacing peakers (power plants that operate to supply peak loads): https://oilprice.com/Energy/Energy-General/Big-Batteries-Are-Becoming-Much-Cheaper.html

Quote


Big Batteries Are Becoming Much Cheaper

By Irina Slav - Feb 15, 2018, 3:00 PM CST
  Tech

Huge battery arrays are undermining peakers—the gas-fired power plants deployed during peak demand—and could in the future completely change the face of the power market.

Batteries are hot right now. Energy storage was referred to as the Holy Grail of renewables by one industry executive, as it would solve its main problem: intermittency. No wonder then that everyone is working hard on storage.

They are working so hard, it seems, that prices, which used to be a major obstacle along the path toward renewable energy storage gaining ground, have fallen much lower than the price of traditionally generated and stored energy, the Wall Street Journal notes in a recent story on giant batteries.

One Minnesota utility, Xcel Energy, not long ago, carried out a tender for the construction of a solar + storage installation, receiving 87 bids whose average price per megawatt hour was just US$36. This compares with US$87 for electricity generated by peakers, with the price including the cost of construction and fuel purchases for the plant.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2523 on: February 17, 2018, 09:52:16 PM »
It’s a storage facility and a peaker plant! And a frequency regulator. And capacity. And spinning reserves....

California regulators first to allow multiple revenue streams for energy storage
The state has approved rules that increase the ways for energy storage systems to make money, for example, through frequency regulation, capacity or spinning reserve services.
Quote
In mid-January, the CPUC  rejected Calpine’s efforts to secure reliability must-run contracts for three of its gas-fired plants — the 580 MW Metcalf Energy Center south of San Jose and two 47 MW peaking plants in Yuba City.

The CPUC ruled that the reliability must-run contracts are too costly and, instead, authorized Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) to procure energy storage or preferred resources, such as distributed solar, to replace the capacity of the three Calpine plants.

Analysts believe it is the first time a utility is procuring energy storage to replace capacity from an existing gas plant.
Quote
More revenue generation options

Under the new revenue stacking rules, projects proposed in the upcoming solicitations could have more options for revenue generation. For example, an energy storage project that is designed to replace a gas peaking plant could be idle for long periods of time. Under the new rules, that storage facility could be put to use when idle to provide services such as frequency regulation, capacity or spinning reserves.

“There is no reason to have a storage project run as infrequently as a peaker,” Morris said. Presumably, the upcoming solicitations will draw proposals for hybrid or multi-use storage projects, he told Utility Dive.
https://www.utilitydive.com/news/california-regulators-first-to-allow-multiple-revenue-streams-for-energy-st/516927/
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2524 on: February 18, 2018, 08:34:17 PM »
Can The Middle East Make A Success Of Renewable Energy? It May Not Have A Choice
Quote
“In the oil producing heart of the Middle East we’re seeing investments in renewables at costs that are really game-changing,” says Adnan Amin, director general of the Abu Dhabi-based International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
...
Much of the Middle East is well placed to exploit the potential of solar energy in particular, given the clear blue skies and hot sun which dominate for much of the year. There is also a strong case for wind power in some other corners of the region, such as Morocco.

There are some climatic problems though. When the sun’s power does relent it is often because of sand storms, which can quickly envelop whole cities, as has recently been the case in the Saudi capital Riyadh and the Iranian city of Ahvaz. When that sand settles on solar panels it can reduce the amount of energy being produced by as much as 30%. A variety of solutions have been tested to clean the panels, including robots and drones, but the most effective approach is often the old-fashioned, lowest tech one available: people.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/dominicdudley/2018/02/14/can-the-middle-east-make-a-success-of-renewable-energy-it-may-not-have-a-choice/
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sidd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2525 on: February 20, 2018, 12:11:33 AM »

JimD

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2526 on: February 22, 2018, 03:30:22 PM »
Wind energy is the big kahuna at 8% of total electricity generation in the US (solar is 2%).

This is accomplished via the installation of approximately 54,000 wind turbines scattered across the US and its territories.

Sounds like a lot but it is a drop in the bucket of what is needed to replace fossil fuels.

So are we rushing to dramatically increase the installed base....or not?

Well here is some indication that things are not all hunky dory in Mudville.

There is growing opposition from the grassroots level (and maybe also due to fossil fuel interests inserting a little chaos into the process).  Headwinds.

Quote
....Much of the opposition is centered in the Midwest, which has the nation's greatest concentration of turbines. Opponents have banded together to block wind projects in at least half a dozen states, including Nebraska, South Dakota, Indiana and Michigan. Disputes are still being waged in Iowa, Minnesota, Illinois and Maryland. Intense opposition also exists in parts of the Northeast, including Maine, New York and Vermont.

For many critics, their opposition starts with a simple disdain for the metal towers that support blades half the length of a football field. They want the views from their kitchen window or deck to be of farmland or hills, not giant wind-harnessing machinery.

Others cite grievances that have long circulated on the internet from people living near the towers. They claim the turbines make them dizzy, irritable and unable to sleep. The whooshing noise and vibration from the blades, they say, force them to close windows and blinds and use white noise to mask the mechanical sounds.

Still other homeowners fear for their property values, as fewer people will want to buy a home overlooking a wind farm.....


http://www.stltoday.com/business/local/new-rebellion-against-wind-energy-stalls-or-stops-projects/article_aab23e57-b778-516f-8d06-7f405e4bd57c.html
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2527 on: February 22, 2018, 06:11:28 PM »
World’s largest solar park under development in Egypt
Quote
The Benban Solar Park aims to reach somewhere between 1.6-2.0GW of solar power by the middle of 2019.

The projects will receive no incentives, however, it will be given a 25 year contract to sell its electricity at 7.8¢/kWh to the the state-owned Egyptian Electricity Transmission Company (EETC) and pegged to the value of the US dollar.

Currently, 29 projects have received financing – representing at least $1.8 billion in public financing. These 29 projects represent almost 1.5GW of solar power.

The land was initially laid out with 41 unique plots ranging from 0.12mi2 to 0.39mi2. The total land area of the park is approximately 14.4mi2.

This eastern region of the Sahara Desert has some of the best solar power resources – sunlight – on the planet. Better than the US/Mexico western desert, but maybe just behind the world’s best spot in the Chilean desert highlands. ...
https://electrek.co/2018/02/22/worlds-largest-solar-park-under-development-in-egypt/
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2528 on: February 22, 2018, 06:16:24 PM »
South Australia:
Tesla’s massive solar+Powerwall virtual power plant could be 30% cheaper than grid power, says report
https://electrek.co/2018/02/22/tesla-powerwall-solar-virtual-power-plant-cheaper-report/

Quote
Earlier this month, Tesla announced that it reached a deal with the South Australian government to install solar arrays and Powerwalls on 50,000 homes to create the biggest virtual power plant in the world.

Now a new report shows just how economically viable this project could be for those 50,000 families who many of which live in Housing Trust properties, which is for lower-income households.
Australian electricity rates are among the highest in the world and that’s especially true in South Australia.

After Tesla installed the 100MW/ 129MWh Powerpack project in South Australia last year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk gave an interview during which he was informed of the significant pressure that Australia’s high electricity prices are putting on families.

Visibly affected by the issue, Musk vowed that Tesla will “work harder” to help solve the problem.

Now the new virtual power plant seems to be the result of that effort, but just how much of an impact it could have on the price of electricity for those 50,000 homes?

It turns out that it can make an important difference.

Each home will be equipped with a 5 kW solar array and a Tesla Powerwall 2 home battery pack. The economics of combining the two technologies and connecting them to the South Australian grid has improved tremendously over the last year thanks to cheaper solar installations and a better use of energy storage.

Australia’s Reneweconomy published a comparison of how the cost of such a system has improved compared to energy solely provided by the grid for an average household from 2016 (left) versus now (right):
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2529 on: February 22, 2018, 10:03:19 PM »
U.S.’s Largest Wind Farm Coming to Oklahoma
Quote
...Once getting its legs, Wind Catcher is expected to deliver wind energy to customers in the four states by the end of 2020.

The Wind Catcher facility, developed by Invenergy, will be the largest single-site wind farm in the U.S. once complete. The 2,000-megawatt facility will generate power from 800 GE 2.5 megawatt turbines. The project also involves building a 360-mile extra high-voltage 765 kilovolt power line to connect two new substations, one located at the wind facility and a second near Tulsa, Oklahoma.

"Oklahoma's panhandle has some of the best wind in America but is hundreds of miles from larger cities and communities that can benefit from low-cost, clean energy," the developers tout. "Wind Catcher Energy Connection is a $4.5 billion infrastructure investment that will bring Oklahoma wind power to more than 1.1 million energy customers in the South Central U.S." ...
https://www.ecowatch.com/wind-farm-oklahoma-2538011028.html
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2530 on: February 23, 2018, 09:00:00 PM »
First Solar sold out well into 2020
Quote
...during 2017, First Solar booked an additional 7.7 GW of PV modules. And so far in Q1 2018 – through February 22 – it is reporting another 1.3 GW in bookings, bringing the total to a stunning 9.1 GW-DC.

First Solar supplied additional details about the transition to Series 6 during its results call. After producing its first S6 module in November, the company expects to start mass production in Ohio during Q2.

First Solar also reports that over 90% of the front-end tools for Series 6 production have been installed at its factory in Kulim, Malaysia, and expects 1.2 GW of annual capacity to come online in Q3’18 at the plant.

The first coater has arrived at the company’s Vietnam factory, and the company expects to begin S6 commercial production during Q4’18 in Vietnam and during Q2 2019 at its second Vietnam factory.

At that point, First Solar will have 4.2 GW/year of Series 6 capacity. Under this plan, First Solar is sold out of modules through the first half of 2020, and possibly into 2021.
https://www.pv-magazine.com/2018/02/23/first-solar-sold-out-well-into-2020/
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TerryM

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2531 on: February 24, 2018, 02:40:35 AM »
First Solar sold out well into 2020
Quote
...during 2017, First Solar booked an additional 7.7 GW of PV modules. And so far in Q1 2018 – through February 22 – it is reporting another 1.3 GW in bookings, bringing the total to a stunning 9.1 GW-DC.

First Solar supplied additional details about the transition to Series 6 during its results call. After producing its first S6 module in November, the company expects to start mass production in Ohio during Q2.

First Solar also reports that over 90% of the front-end tools for Series 6 production have been installed at its factory in Kulim, Malaysia, and expects 1.2 GW of annual capacity to come online in Q3’18 at the plant.

The first coater has arrived at the company’s Vietnam factory, and the company expects to begin S6 commercial production during Q4’18 in Vietnam and during Q2 2019 at its second Vietnam factory.

At that point, First Solar will have 4.2 GW/year of Series 6 capacity. Under this plan, First Solar is sold out of modules through the first half of 2020, and possibly into 2021.
https://www.pv-magazine.com/2018/02/23/first-solar-sold-out-well-into-2020/
Will they still require Trump's tariffs to be able to compete at that point?
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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2532 on: February 24, 2018, 02:54:05 PM »
First Solar is going to pay tariffs on those cells. It would be better off without them.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2533 on: February 25, 2018, 04:57:42 PM »
There was strong agreement in the report (71% of those questioned) that the business case for renewables will be boosted more by technological advances in the next five years than by policy or regulatory changes

When Will Renewables Become The Dominant Source Of Energy? It May Be Sooner Than You Think
Quote
A survey of 800 key industry figures found that China would be the first country to achieve grid parity, in 2022, followed by Spain and the United Arab Emirates two years later in 2024. This is the same year that Germany and the UK are expected to see grid parity for wind power, followed a year later by Denmark and the USA. The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) said recently that clean energy sources will be cheaper than fossil fuels by 2020.
...
One impact of the advance of renewables is that oil majors such as BP, Total and Shell – even ExxonMobil – have started to take the sector much more seriously, in some cases returning to sectors, such as solar and wind, that they abandoned when, at a time of record high oil and gas prices, technology costs failed to fall as quickly as anticipated, in part because of the lack of a meaningful carbon price.

Such a price would boost investment in the sector significantly, said Karl Ove Ingebrigtsen, director of LR’s Low Carbon Power Generation business. “For oil and gas producers a standardized carbon price scheme for emissions provides a financial incentive to seek solutions through efficiency and innovation in lower carbon technologies.

“We are seeing a real shift in thinking by the oil and gas majors as they increase their renewable energy portfolio and diversify their offering in the market. The halcyon days of high oil prices scuppering renewable energy growth and development is a distant memory; the energy industry is on a new low-carbon growth and efficiency drive which will change the source of our energy supply forever, ” says Ingebrigsten.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/mikescott/2018/02/19/when-will-renewables-become-the-dominant-source-of-energy-it-may-be-sooner-than-you-think/
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2534 on: February 26, 2018, 04:24:47 PM »
More stats on the South Australia “virtual power plant” project.

Quote
Virtual power plants -- real power
The state of South Australia describes the plan thusly: In phase 1 of the project, Tesla has already begun installing 5 kilowatt solar panel systems and 13.5 kWh Tesla Powerwall 2 batteries (to store the electricity generated by the solar panels) in 1,100 Housing Trust rental properties across the state. This phase will run through 2019, at which point phase 2 will begin.

In phase 2, which will take a further two and a half years to complete, the project will be rolled out to another 24,000 Housing Trust properties. It will double in size in phase 3, encompassing a total of 50,000 households -- Housing Trust and otherwise -- across the state. Installations in privately owned homes will begin in 2019.

The idea is for each household to generate and store "a significant proportion" of the power needed to run itself, drawing upon the grid to cover any temporary shortfalls. At the same time, any excess power generated would be "centrally controlled" and available "to meet the needs of the grid" as a whole.

Once complete, the virtual power plant should be capable of meeting "around 20% of South Australia's average daily energy requirements," and sufficient to power about 75,000 homes -- which you'll note is 50% more than necessary to cover the homes that will participate, providing a wide margin of safety.

Real power, and real savings
Participants in the program will pay no up-front fees. Rather, the electricity generated by their panels will be sold to generate revenue to pay for the project's costs. Thus, the business model envisioned resembles the original model of Tesla's SolarCity subsidiary. South Australia is also putting plans in place to permit homeowners to purchase their solar panels and Powerwall batteries outright.

A study by consulting firm Frontier Economics estimates that Tesla's new virtual power plant will save South Australian households 30% of their current electricity costs. (That's measured against an estimated average cost today of AU$0.40 per kilowatt-hour, or $0.31 U.S., with the Australian dollar worth $0.78 U.S.)

To accelerate these savings, the South Australian government is subsidizing the program's estimated AU$800 million total cost with an AU$2 million grant and an AU$30 million loan, and relying on investors to cover the rest of the cost. ...
https://www.fool.com/investing/2018/02/25/australia-doubles-down-on-tesla.aspx
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sidd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2536 on: February 28, 2018, 06:24:11 AM »
Shaner et al. have a paper out doi:10.1039/c7ee03029k

I notice Caldeira is an author. They explore wind and solar mixes in the USA and find that 80% demand is doable with 12 hrs storage, but investment rises very quickly if one tries to do better.

"Our analysis, in accord with other studies over more limited geographic scales and time scales, indicates however that costs rise sharply if more than ~80% of total annual U.S. electricity demand is met using solely wind and solar generation in conjunction with storage and transmission, given storage capital cost assumptions (~$100 per kW h) that are consistent with current and near-term projected costs."

"In particular, our results highlight the need for cheap energy storage and/or dispatchable electricity generation."

But the authors dont discuss demand reduction or passive measures like better insulation and increased efficiency. I think those might cut demand by 20% or more.

I attach four panels from fig 2 (the caption and color key are in the second) and panels g,h from fig S4

Note how the problem months move around depending on the mix. I like the 50-50 mix from fig S4g,h but i suppose the plunging price of solar makes fig 4 g,h the most bang for the buck.

If we need fast non-battery dispatchables, right now its natgas. And that's the way the utilities are betting. Wonder if biogas will ever scale up ...

sidd
« Last Edit: February 28, 2018, 06:33:10 AM by sidd »

BenB

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2537 on: February 28, 2018, 09:23:42 AM »
Sidd,

I think these kinds of exercises are interesting and useful, but while the US is at under10% solar and wind combined, the current cost of energy storage is not hugely relevant for getting from 80 to 100. Like you I think there's huge room for energy saving, but new demand response technology is developing really quickly, and storage costs will be much lower when the US is at 80% solar +wind. Grid upgrades will also be important.

In the meantime, let's install renewables as quickly as we can, save energy through retrofits and tighter standards, electrify transport, etc

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2538 on: February 28, 2018, 02:04:45 PM »
This suggests that wind, solar and hydro can be a 100% solution. Just pay pumped hydro to sit around and discharge for that week per year that you can’t meet demand with wind and solar, plus keep some of the dams we already have.

sidd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2539 on: February 28, 2018, 09:40:02 PM »
Re: pumped hydro

 About 22 GW pumped hydro currently. About 12 can be added. But the dams are also used for water control and discharge/refill is dependent on weather and water requirements downstream as well as power production/storage. A useful paper is:

https://www1.eere.energy.gov/water/pdfs/npd_report.pdf

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2540 on: February 28, 2018, 10:20:41 PM »
Dams provide around 10% of the US grid right now. I can't find a copy of the article to see how much shortfall you suffer in their models, but it seems relatively low.

sidd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2541 on: February 28, 2018, 11:13:47 PM »
From the eere article, regular dams (conventiontal, not pumped hydro) provide 78GW

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2542 on: March 01, 2018, 05:50:05 AM »
So, 100 GW total hydro at the peak, 78 that can be sustained for a week. Plenty enough to remove all the red in the figure.

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2543 on: March 01, 2018, 07:03:59 AM »
You'll need some serious grid upgrades to make full use of the hydro. Fortunately that's already happening and will no doubt continue. Better integration with Canada, which has plenty of hydro, would also help. Political will is probably the main missing ingredient, although new and improved technology also has a part to play.

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2544 on: March 01, 2018, 07:54:49 AM »
Dams have water control issues. Not all their capacity is always available ...

sidd

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2545 on: March 01, 2018, 10:15:18 AM »
Meanwhile, Sweden continues shutting down existing small scale hydro, due to environmental reasons. Some examples here:
https://www.lrf.se/politikochpaverkan/aganderatt-och-miljo/vatten/mot-foretagare-med-vattenverksamheter/
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« Last Edit: March 01, 2018, 10:31:41 AM by Sleepy »
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numerobis

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2546 on: March 01, 2018, 01:52:05 PM »
My main point is that the article conclusively shows that solar + wind + battery (A) can cover almost all our needs, (B) but not quite everything.

They were only looking at scenarios of how far solar + wind + battery could get you. They largely prove you need to cover that last bit with something else. There's lots else to use that's renewable.

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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2547 on: March 01, 2018, 07:13:02 PM »
Headwinds to renewable energy adoption:-

Quote
Fossil fuel subsidies totalled at least $373bn globally in 2015, according to a new report which for the first time combines figures from two key intergovernmental organisations.

https://www.carbonbrief.org/oecd-fossil-fuel-subsidies-373-billion-2015
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Re: Renewable Energy
« Reply #2549 on: March 03, 2018, 11:32:46 PM »
My main point is that the article conclusively shows that solar + wind + battery (A) can cover almost all our needs, (B) but not quite everything.

They were only looking at scenarios of how far solar + wind + battery could get you. They largely prove you need to cover that last bit with something else. There's lots else to use that's renewable.

I notice that high-voltage DC transmission systems that would be part of a necessary Renewawble solution are not included in these analyses.  Having a vibrant system from the suothwest for solar (and wind in Texas) as well as transmission from the far west desert states and combined with massive wind buildups in the mid and north-midwest with supplies going both East and West would allow for a significant reduction in storage needs compared to the system being modeled.  (for example, the late day solar peak in the southern California desert could reasonably provide power to the North East (Easter Shore of Massachusetts) during their evening peak under a worst-case scenario with only 18% line losses)

https://www.siemens.com/press/pool/de/events/2012/energy/2012-07-wismar/factsheet-hvdc-e.pdf

It should also be noted that the utilization of cooling systems for these desert solar panels would be able to increase generation efficiency output by 12% by cooling the panels in the desert by 40C  http://www.firstsolar.com/-/media/First-Solar/Technical-Documents/Series-6-Datasheets/Series-6-Datasheet.ashx
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