Enbala Blog

Renewable Energy a Threat to Conventional Utilities?

By Enbala on Apr 25, 2016 9:59:50 AM

This past Earth Day, plenty of power system participants celebrated our lovely planet. PECO used the date to launch it’s new Solar Stakeholder Collaborative. Louisville Gas & Electric sponsored a do at the Louisville Zoo. First Energy held EarthFest, Ohio's largest environmental education event, for some of its six million customers. Even California’s Independent System Operator (CAISO) used the date to push eco-friendly living. It issued its summer power supply forecast via a press release that sported the headline, “Energy Conservation: What’s Good for the Planet is Good for the Power Grid.”

Ultimately, that’s true. Ironically, a recent survey by the consultancy West Monroe Partners found that most utilities treat DERs -- like customer-sited solar -- as a threat. The same survey shows that only 3 percent of executives who responded view the growth of DER as an opportunity.

Read More

Topics: distributed energy resources, Solar energy, DERs, DERMs

Smart Inverters: Here today for tomorrow

By Enbala on Apr 14, 2016 3:33:22 PM

Here’s something that’s not so smart about smart inverters: Many people assume we can’t take advantage of the voltage and frequency benefits they could offer grid operators because regulations get in the way. But, even in jurisdictions where regulations hamper autonomous operation of smart inverters, there’s still a way you could gain benefit from them. Just hook them up to a DER-management platform like Symphony by Enbala.

What could be could be

For those who don’t know much about smart inverters, here’s a quick look at what they are and what they can do.

Read More

Topics: distributed energy resources, Distributed energy resource management, Solar energy, DERs, smart inverters

Variable Generation Issues Meet Their Match: Smart Inverters

By Malcolm Metcalfe on Mar 8, 2016 9:04:35 AM

INTRODUCTION:

Do you remember that outage that left some 50 million people in the dark on August 14, 2003? It took down 61,900 megawatts of load in eight eastern U.S. states and the Canadian Province of Ontario. The financial impact was as high as $10 billion in the U.S. and $2.3 billion up north. When government researchers from the U.S. and Canada examined the event, they reported that insufficient reactive power was one of the factors leading to it.

So, here’s the big question: When rooftop solar installations start causing localized voltage headaches for utilities, will there be enough local reactive power to bump that voltage up? There will if we get smart inverters along with new solar deployments.

Read More

Topics: Solar energy, DERs, smart inverters, voltage regulation, grid balance

Linking Distributed Energy Assets to Generate Higher Value

By Bud Vos on Jan 7, 2016 7:38:59 AM

When it comes to planning for distributed energy resources (DERs), the State of California is one to watch. In 2015, major electric utilities submitted extensive plans for integration of distributed energy resources (DERs), with special focus on how such technologies will change planning for the last-mile distribution system and what process changes will be necessary.

Read More

Topics: distributed energy resources, Distributed energy resource management, Solar, Solar energy, DERs, distributed energy integration

Smarter solar: Go West!

By Bud Vos on Nov 18, 2015 6:44:41 PM

Anyone who’s seen the California ISO “Duck Curve” knows south-facing roof-top solar is not particularly good for utilities. The problem, which appears so clearly in the eloquent graph below, is that daily peak continues to grow, so utilities still have to build out new generation, transmission and distribution facilities. But, household solar reduces overall energy sales, and this is where most of the money comes from to pay for the new capacity. Some utilities are referring to this as the “death spiral.”

 

Read More

Topics: photovoltaic, distributed energy resources, Distributed energy resource management, Solar, Solar energy

Subscribe to Blog Updates

Recent Posts

Posts by Topic

see all