Kicking off 2018 with a new market innovation initiative, MSL organized and co-hosted an inaugural workshop on Tribal Energy Sovereignty in January. This half-day roundtable offered a survey of relevant concepts and factors bearing on energy independence for indigenous communities, including technology, finance, regulations, economic and workforce, and cultural aspects. Based on the positive input received and level of participation and engagement, we will now assess the feasibility of launching a national program to support Native American communities in their quest for energy sovereignty, with a focus on community microgrids.
Siemens has announced its partnership with Santa Fe Community College (SFCC) to create a next-generation microgrid workforce training center. The announcement was made at the Microgrid 2017 conference, to nearly 500 senior industry participants. SFCC is MSL’s primary education partner for workforce training and professional development, and MSL will serve as Project Director to implement the program. (more…)
Bryan Hannegan, President and CEO of Holy Cross Energy (a not-for-profit, member-owned electric cooperative utility providing electricity and energy products and services to more than 55,000 customers in Western Colorado) has joined the MSL Advisors. Prior to joining Holy Cross in July 2017, Bryan was the Associate Laboratory Director for Energy Systems Integration at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), an MSL Member, where he co-founded the US Department of Energy’s Grid Modernization Initiative and started up the successful Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF), a unique “distribution grid in a box” enabling utilities, entrepreneurs and consumers to work together on cleaner, more affordable and more reliable energy systems. (more…)
The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration has awarded a Public Works grant to MSL’s education partner, Santa Fe Community College (SFCC). This EDA investment will support SFCC’s Building Energy Automation and Microgrid Training Center (BEAMtc), supplied with the necessary equipment to train workers to meet industry driven job demand. The total project budget is over $700,000, with cost-share from the State of New Mexico and Siemens Industry. (more…)
The Center for Emerging Energy Technologies (CEET) at the University of New Mexico has joined MSL, the inaugural research university in the consortium. CEET facilitates collaborative research in the inherently interdisciplinary field of emerging energy technologies, a perfect complement to MSL’s cross-sector structure. The Center is a meeting place for faculty, students and practitioners from the School of Engineering, other UNM divisions, and participants outside the university to work together to find the solutions to one of society’s most pressing needs: sustainable energy. In particular, CEET provides an environment to foster large-scale research efforts, involving Universities, Industry and the National Labs. (more…)
The Advanced Energy Centre at the MaRS Discovery District (a leading innovation center in Toronto, Ontario, Canada) has joined MSL as a Member institution, bringing its significant and synergistic achievements in microgrids and local clean energy systems to our increasingly international mix of collaborators.
The Advanced Energy Centre (AEC), founded in February 2014, is a partnership between MaRS Discovery District, the Ontario Ministry of Energy and the private sector with CapGemini and Siemens as founding partners. The Centre’s mission is to foster the adoption of innovative energy technologies in Ontario and Canada, and to leverage those successes and experiences into international markets. (more…)
MSL is pleased to announce that Dr. Hisham Zerriffi has joined our Advisors, further strengthening our resources focused on solutions to energy poverty and clean energy development in the emerging economies. Hisham is an Associate Professor in Forest Resources Management, Faculty of Forestry, at UBC. Hisham’s research is at the intersection of technology, energy and the environment, with a particular focus on rural areas of the developing world. (more…)
SteamaCo, a leading venture-backed microgrid monitoring and payments platform based in Kenya, has joined MSL and its efforts to drive systems-level innovation in clean “energy poverty” solutions, for those lacking dependable access to electricity. SteamaCo has built more than 30 rural microgrids throughout the developing world. The company’s technology enables microgrid owners to monitor performance remotely, and capture consumer payments via mobile phone-based payment platforms, thereby overcoming many of the major challenges of keeping rural microgrids functioning reliably and profitably.
As stated in a 2015 article in The Guardian, “This simple but fundamental transition stands to make investment in solar micro-grids a truly compelling prospect, bringing electricity to millions and giving local entrepreneurs the tools to thrive.” (more…)
MSL is very pleased to announce that HOMER Energy has joined as a Member organization. HOMER is the world’s leading microgrid modeling software company. The HOMER (Hybrid Optimization of Multiple Energy Resources) microgrid software navigates the complexities of building cost effective and reliable microgrids that combine traditionally generated and renewable power, storage, and load management. With over 145,000 users in 193 countries, HOMER is the established global leader for microgrid design optimization and feasibility, and HOMER Energy is a nexus for the microgrid market.
MSL and HOMER will explore several areas of immediate and longer-term collaboration, utilizing their respective networks and core competencies. In particular, there are many aspects of workforce training and professional certification across geographical ares that are an increasingly important ecosystem factor. With its partner Santa Fe Community College, MSL will work with HOMER to develop an effective training capacity, and the modeling software will be incorporated into the microgrid curriculum at SFCC. (more…)
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is collaborating with MSL and Santa Fe Community College (SFCC) in their efforts to develop an advanced campus-wide microgrid for training, research, and testing and validation. NREL is a member of MSL, and SFCC is a founding MSL partner with responsibility for workforce and professional development initiatives.
The campus microgrid will be a state-of-the-art facility, unique among community colleges and comparable to university campus installations, with an emphasis on supporting the college’s educational mission, sustainability goals, operational efficiencies, and MSL’s strategic objectives. It will link existing assets, including a 1.5 megawatt photovoltaic array and a district heating and cooling system, with new technology that is capable of demonstrating the full range of advanced microgrid functionality. (more…)