According to this article posted at www.seekingalpha.com, R&D for fuel cells is ahead of schedule at some auto manufacturers, but they still have miles to go before they can mass produce new cars powered by fuel cells. Most major auto manufacturers reportedly want to launch fuel cell-powered cars by 2015. Honda, one of the early leaders in fuel cell development for automobiles, launched its FCX Clarity FCEV
(pictured here) for commercial use on a limited basis in Southern California in 2008. The car, which has a driving range of approximately 240 miles, was designed from the ground up to be a hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle that runs on electricity and emits only water vapor and heat into the air.
Become a certified installer of EV charging stations with the Schneider Electric EcoXpert certification program. Developed to help electrical contractors grow business the EcoXpert program creates sales opportunities through our EVlink charging stations. Click here for a FREE webinar about the EcoXpert program and a chance to WIN an Apple® iPad.
SolarPro magazine's listing of solar training classes offered by various providers around the United States through Sept. 2012 is a great resource for anyone in the electrical industry who needs local training on photovoltaic installations.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has released a report detailing the characteristics of the U.S. lighting market by technology and sector. The report, entitled the 2010 U.S. Lighting Market Characterization, provides comprehensive and detailed estimates of the national inventory of installed lamps as well as their associated energy use and lumen production. It focuses on four sectors: residential buildings, commercial buildings, industrial buildings, and outdoor.
According to a DOE email announcing the release of the study,in 2010, lighting accounted for approximately 700 terawatt-hours (TWh), or roughly 19 percent of the country's total electricity use. Nearly half of that energy use (349 TWh) came from the commercial sector, which was dominated by fluorescent lighting. Although the residential sector (175 TWh) contained far more installed lamps, most of them incandescent, these residential lamps did not see nearly as much daily use, on average, as did commercial-sector lamps.
Since 2001, the average system efficacy of installed lighting increased from 45 lumens per watt in 2001 to 58 lumens per watt in 2010, due mainly to a move from incandescent to compact fluorescent lamps in the residential sector, and from T12 to T8 and T5 fluorescent lamps in the commercial and industrial sectors. The total number of lamps installed in U.S. stationary applications grew from just under 7 billion in 2001 to more than 8 billion in 2010, with most of this growth occurring in the residential sector.
Dow Solar, Midland, Mich., recently appointed three Colorado roofing contractors as its first authorized dealers to sell Powerhouse Solar Shingles. Academy Roofing, Aurora, Colo.; B&M Roofing of Colorado Inc., Fort Collins, Colo.; and D&D Roofing, Commerce City, Colo., now provide the Colorado residential market with DOW’s solar shingles. The Powerhouse shingles combine a roofing shingle with a solar cell, enabling them to be installed by a roofer along with standard asphalt roofing materials. Details
The city of Asheville has initiated North Carolina’s first large-scale deployment of LED street lights with 3,643 LEDway street lights from Durham, N.C.,-based manufacturer Cree, Inc. According to a Cree press release, the project will save Asheville $260,000 annually. In the initial phase of the project, completed in June 2011, 730 street lights in Asheville’s River District and Kenilworth neighborhoods were replaced with 67W to 195W LEDway luminaires, estimated to save the city $45,000 in annual energy costs. An additional 2,913 LEDway street lights are currently being installed, and the city of Asheville anticipates saving 50 percent of current energy use and maintenance costs due to the LED upgrade.
The Department of Defense (DOD) could generate 7000 megawatts (MW) of solar energy -- equivalent to the output of seven nuclear power plants -- on four military bases located in the California desert, according to a study
released by DOD’s Office of Installations and Environment. The year-long study, conducted by the consultancy ICF International, looked at seven military bases in California and two in Nevada. It found that even though 96 percent of the surface area of the nine bases is unsuited for solar development because of military use, endangered species and other factors, the solar-compatible area is nevertheless large enough to generate more than 30 times the electricity consumed by the California bases, or about 25 percent of the renewable energy that the State of California is requiring utilities to use by 2015. The study looks in detail at the seven DOD installations that are located in California’s Mojave and Colorado deserts: Fort Irwin; Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake; the Marine Corps’ Chocolate Mountain Aerial Gunnery Range; Edwards Air Force Base; Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow; Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms; and Naval Air Facility El Centro. The study also looks at two Air Force bases located in the Nevada desert, Creech and Nellis.
Rooftop solar panels are attracting a new demographic of customers who are choosing to lease rather than buy, and are enjoying the low upfront costs and immediate savings, according to a study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The new third-party-lease business model lets homeowners save money the very first month, rather than breaking even a decade later after an initial investment of $10,000 or $20,000. The NREL study, “The Transformation of Southern California’s Residential Photovoltaics Market through Third-Party Ownership,” is available for $19.95 by clicking here. Details
Solar 3D Inc.,
Santa Barbara, Calif., the developer of a new three-dimensional solar cell technology to maximize the conversion of sunlight into electricity, recently announced a design breakthrough that will substantially reduce the mass production costs of its new super-efficient solar cell. Inspired by light management techniques used in fiber optic devices, the company’s innovative solar cell technology utilizes a three-dimensional design to trap sunlight inside micro-photovoltaic structures where photons bounce around until they are converted into electrons. Solar3D’s management believes this breakthrough solar cell design will dramatically change the economics of solar energy.
Jim Nelson, president and CEO of Solar3D, said in a press release, “We challenged our technical team to come up with an improved design that will allow for low-cost manufacturing. The result is an elegant single element design where the light collecting function is creatively merged into the micro-photovoltaic structures on a single silicon wafer. We believe that our improved design can be manufactured in a single silicon wafer processing line, instead of a complex multi-material process. In the world of PV, every step of manufacturing process adds a significant cost component. We are very excited about our new design breakthrough and expect our manufacturing cost to be dramatically reduced.” Details
RAB Lighting has expanded its popular LFLOOD line of floodlights with the addition of its new FXLED78, a 78W LED replacement for 250W metal-halide floodlights. The FXLED78 delivers nearly 70% energy savings relative to standard 250W metal-halide systems and offers good light color, long life and affordability to a broad range of outdoor commercial LED lighting applications. It’s designed for building façade lighting as well as signage, landscaping, security lighting, and other outdoor commercial applications requiring higher power. RAB Lighting
Designed to replace standard 75W incandescent bulbs, MaxLite will introduce two high-performance LED PAR40 lamps for decorative lighting manufacturers at the January Dallas Lighting Market. The global manufacturer and marketer of innovative LED luminaires and lamps is launching its “Pancake” Dimmable Low Profile 16W LED PAR40 with a 160-degree beam angle for general lighting, and the “Eclipse” Dimmable LED Low Profile 16W PAR40 LED Lamp with a 45-degree beam angle for spot lighting. Eclipse is 5.25 inches in diameter and 4.75 inches long, while the Pancake is 5 inches in diameter and 3 inches long. Their compact form and industry leading thermal design enable the bulbs to provide solutions for lighting applications in commercial, residential, architectural and OEM markets. MaxLite
March 21, 2012
New York, Designers Lighting Forum of New York (DLFNY); firstname.lastname@example.org, www.dlfny.com
May 9-11, 2012
Las Vegas, Lightfair International;(404)220-2218; email@example.com, www.lightfair.com
June 3-6, 2012
Atlanta, American Wind Energy Association (AWEA); 202-383-2500, firstname.lastname@example.org,
Sept. 10-13, 2012
Orlando, Solar Energy Industries Association); (202) 682-0556, email@example.com, www.seia.org