Power electronics (PE) play a critical role in transforming the current electric grid into the next-generation grid. PE enable utilities to deliver power to their customers effectively while providing increased reliability, security, and flexibility to the electric power system.
A modern, reliable, secure, affordable and environmentally sensitive national energy infrastructure is fundamental to our quality of life and energy future. Yet since 1982, growth in peak demand for electricity has exceeded the growth and development of our electric grid. This demand growth will continue due to a growing population; larger homes with burgeoning IT requirements and more elaborate appliances; and the growth of electric vehicles; as well as, the day-to-day energy required to power our hospitals, schools, industries and other necessities of life.
Timely, accurate and defensible policy and market analysis is a key ingredient to building and sustaining successful programs at DOE. The National Electricity Delivery Division coordinates OE's policy-related activities which include:
Can you imagine a photovoltaic module that’s able to generate and store electricity on its own? Or an electric vehicle (EV) powered by a technology more durable than the advanced batteries in today’s EVs? Innovative solid-state nanocapacitors are making this clean technology possible.
If you’ve ever driven by an industrial plant, you’ve probably noticed big white plumes rising from the tops of the facilities. While it might look like smoke or pollution at first glance, most of the time those white plumes are comprised of steam and heat, or what Ener-G-Rotors CEO Michael Newell calls waste heat. Mike and the researchers of Ener-G-Rotors are finding ways to use this escaped steam and turn it into energy.
Earlier this week, we told you about a new company that’s developing battery technology that will allow energy storage for multiple hours on the power grid. General Compression is another innovative company that’s developing a different way to store electricity by using compressed air energy storage, or CAES. The technology uses cheap power to pump air into natural underground caverns, and then releases it to turn a turbine when power demands are at their peak. Basically, when the wind blows too hard, wind energy is stored as compressed air. When the wind doesn’t blow hard enough, compressed air is expanded to generate power – all without burning any fuel.