News

Whole Energy Systems Transitions

A multi-organization team led by MSL has proposed the Whole Energy Systems Transitions (WEST) project for funding through a new program in New Mexico, the Collaborative Zone Grants. Created by three leading local philanthropies, the McCune, Thornburg, and Santa Fe Community Foundations, the grant “…is an opportunity for collaborations of organizations and other entities to apply together for multi-year funding to test, prove and support approaches to New Mexico’s challenges that extend beyond the mission of any single organization.”

The WEST proposal addresses the funders’ framing question, “What would an equitable energy transition look like for New Mexico communities?” Within that framework, the main issue the project seeks to address is that NM’s transition to a 21stcentury energy system – which we define as sustainable, resilient, and equitable – will have both universal impacts on all New Mexicans (primarily due to economic diversification from the state’s reliance on fossil fuel production), and also diverse impacts on the various different types and sizes of communities (rural, urban, traditional, Native American), and depending on their economic base and vitality.

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Energy Sovereignty Institute In Development

Building on a successful workshop in January of 2018, MSL has partnered with the Sustainable Native Communities Collaborative (SNCC) to form the Energy Sovereignty Institute (ESI). ESI is a not-for-profit social initiative, designed to promote the benefits of decentralized energy systems and technologies for Native American communities, and to advance their availability and use.

SNCC focuses on culturally and environmentally sustainable development with American Indian, First Nations, and Indigenous communities. As sustainable energy, housing, and community design are inextricably woven together in any effective development framework, SNCC and MSL combine the needed skills, experience, and networks to advance a shared mission and agenda. (more…)



MSL, UNM Propose Transit Systems Research

MSL, in partnership with Member organization the University of New Mexico, is co-lead on a proposal to the National Science Foundation’s Smart and Connected Communities Program. The project, entitled “Integrated Planning for Public Transit and Electricity Distribution Networks, In an Era of Autonomous Vehicle Fleets,” also involves the City of Albuquerque and its new Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system as a community partner, and is under consideration for $3 million in funding over a three-year term. This innovative integrated research project draws from UNM’s electrical, civil and mechanical engineering, computer science, economics, and architecture and community planning faculties, and includes behavioral, social, and data science elements.

Smart and connected communities everywhere will be affected by two major – and interrelated – infrastructure shifts, already underway: in the transportation sector, the shift to electric and autonomous vehicles (EVs and AVs) and fleets; and in the energy sector, the shift to decentralized and decarbonized electricity systems. Together, these will have profound implications for many aspects of urban planning and design. (more…)



SFCC, MSL Announce Partnership

Santa Fe Community College Announces Partnership with Microgrid Systems Laboratory

 

 

 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 14, 2018

SANTA FE, NM – The Microgrid Systems Laboratory (MSL), a consortium focused on energy systems innovation, announced today its ongoing collaboration with Santa Fe Community College (SFCC). MSL currently has 15 Member organizations worldwide, spanning the education, utility, industry, and research sectors. Microgrids are community-scale integrated energy systems, and SFCC is MSL’s primary collaborator for workforce education, training and professional development.

This collaboration has resulted in the creation of the Building Energy Automation and Microgrid Training Center (BEAMTC), funded by grants and contributions from the U.S. Economic Development Administration, the State of New Mexico, and Siemens Industry. MSL worked with SFCC to envision the center and solicit this support, and is currently coordinating its implementation. Training infrastructure and curriculum are in development, with the intent of offering coursework in fall of 2019. (more…)



Tribal Energy Sovereignty Program

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.

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Siemens Announces Santa Fe Training Center

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 joins Advisors

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…)



EDA Grant Awarded

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…)



Center for Emerging Energy Technologies Joins MSL

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…)



Advanced Energy Centre Joins MSL

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…)