Earth Month 2022 | Renewable Energy Storage
Integrating sources of renewable energy is no longer a nice to have, it’s a requirement. With the passing of IIJA, our country should see a big boom to the integration of these sources in the near future. With all this talk of renewables floating around – what is it?
Renewable energy is energy from sources that naturally replenish but are limited per unit time. Think of solar energy - a source of energy that is available for a period (about 12 hours) then is gone for another period. This energy is inexhaustible but isn’t always available. Other sources of renewable energy include wood, hydropower, ethanol, biodiesel, geothermal and wind.
As far as electrical generation goes, most forms of renewables have been utilized at some point in our history. However, now the primary focus is on the most abundant forms of renewable energy: solar and wind. The passing of the infrastructure bill should fuel research that will improve the efficiency of harvesting these resources. Solar panels will become more environmentally friendly to manufacture as well as boast an increased life span, which is currently 25-30 years, without a significant drop off in performance.
Earlier we mentioned that these renewable sources are innately time limited. Advancements in battery storage systems will allow for the use of the harvested solar and wind power when those sources aren’t directly available. Simply put, these storage systems are installed in electrical substations and integrated into the grid to be drawn upon even in the absence of sunlight or wind. This is a current practice, but with the passing of IIJA these practices will become more widely adopted and efficient. Alpha 3’s designers and engineers play an important role in integrating storage systems into the power supply.
All facets of renewables, inverting of DC to AC, HVDC protection philosophy, HVDC transmission practices etc. will see a big boom due to the newly available funding and initiative to be better and greener. Alpha 3 is excited to be at the forefront of this amazing time in energy transformation.