The Port of Seattle in Washington, US is working on plans to extend shore power to more piers. It is the first port in North America to provide shore power in its 2 Seattle cruise berths located at Terminal 91. The port has further planned to connect shore power to other major facilities at its waterfront. The facilities located at the waterfront will be provided shore power through underwater cables to all 4 cruise berths.
Power generation using wind energy has been on the rise for the past few years, particularly in offshore locations of North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific. The rise of offshore wind energy generation is attributed to the better yields due to the high offshore wind speed. A turbine in 15-mph wind speed can generate double as much energy as a turbine in 12-mph wind speed can. Offshore wind speeds are steadier than on land wind speeds because of the large open spaces at sea.
In a major development GE has secured USD 1.0 Billion of project financing for the first independent combined cycle power plant in Sharjah, UAE. GE is working with co developers GE Energy Financial Services (GE EFS), Sumitomo Corporation of Japan, Sharjah Asset Management (SAM), the investment arm of the Government of Sharjah, and Shikoku Electric Power Company for development of power plant project. The secured financing is from leading private financial institutions of Japan, with the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), and Japan’s export credit agency (ECA) under the insurance cover provided by government of Japan.
The role of renewable energy is becoming more eminent in the global energy mix. The power generated by renewable energy in 2018 accounts for more than 25% globally with total installed capacity of 2,350 GW. As integration of renewable energy keeps on increasing at an average of at least 8% year on year (International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)), there is a lookout for newer ways to conserve and store power generated by the renewables.
Eaton completed the acquisition of a controlling interest in Ulusoy Elektrik, a medium voltage product manufacturing company in Turkey, in April 2019. This transaction happened with the purchase of shares of nearly $214 million on a cash and debt free basis. With this acquisition, Eaton is likely to gain more access to electrical products market in countries within the Middle East and Africa region.
Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) and Centrica recently collaborated on demand response services with Centrica (a UK-based organization) likely to assist TEPCO with FlexPond, an electricity demand response platform, to ensure that TEPCO provides stable electricity distribution services in the Kyushu region. FlexPond will be delivered under an innovative commercial “software-as-a-service” (SaaS) model, which will allow utilities, like TEPCO, to use the application platform to build its own virtual power plants (VPPs) and deliver the demand side response capability through a variety of flexible generation and demand facilities.
The European power system is set to change radically in the future owing to the drive to reduce carbon emissions. At the same time electrification of transportation and heating sector will create a perennial demand on the grid infrastructure.
German conglomerate Siemens acquired the solar string inverter business of KACO new energy GmbH, which specializes in the field of independent and decentralized energy supply. This acquisition will strengthen the decentralized energy systems portfolio of Siemens, which will get a fresh lease of life, through this acquisition.
French renewable energy company Total Eren has agreed to buy Novenergia Holding Company, a Renewable power producer, in a deal worth more than 1 billion euros. Considering Total Eren’s presence in France, Greece, and Italy, it is evident that with this deal they are gifted with a massive opportunity of expanding their presence in almost the entire Southern Europe.
The New South Wales Labor party leader Michael Daley has announced that an NSW Labor government, if elected, would help supply half a million new solar systems on NSW roofs, establish a new state-owned power company to deliver a further one gigawatt of renewable energy and storage, and deliver seven gigawatts of extra renewable energy by 2030. This will help power about three million households and cut down the state’s carbon emissions by 12%.
The power generation sector is one of the important industrial sectors which contribute to the increasing carbon foot print. When it comes to power generation, the trend is shifting from non-renewable sources of energy such as coal and crude oil toward more clean and renewable sources such as wind and solar power and many others that are at nascent stage, but likely to gravitate towards commercialization. Recent developments including a major utility holding company in the U.S., viz. Xcel Energy, to phase out all its power generation assets that use non-renewable sources and committment to becoming a 100% clean energy producer has raised eyebrows. Apart from aiming toward 100% clean generation, there is also an increasing focus toward the use of energy efficient technologies, such as battery storage (using non-lithium ion batteries), distributed generation, electric grid modernization and advanced nuclear reactors along with hydrogen, sunlight to fuels, smart cities, biological sequestration and advanced manufacturing technologies, being the top priority clean energy innovation areas, ushering in a new era of clean energy 2.0.
In this generation, most of the utilities are under increasing pressure for quality, reliability and security and the equivalent cost of the power that they supply to their valued customers. Real time digital simulators are an intrinsic tool for utilities in this volatile environment. Through these Digital Twins or replicas, utilities’ companies can run simulations of their equipment, and mine data and insights of these simulations. This is one of the white spaces wherein the companies can move beyond predictive maintenance and AI.
The oil and gas industry has always been volatile, but with the recent decline in oil prices and cuts in spending, companies are exploring new vistas to improve efficiencies, performance, safety and take risk mitigation measures, at the same time optimize production. In the Utilities Industry as well, dynamic fordecasting & load management, operational efficiency augmentation, increasing government initiatives for AMI accentuate demand for predictive analytics, with highly advanced data technologies focused around solutions for preventive maintenance and production-related analytics at the core.
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NextEra Energy on 3rd Jan 2019 completed its $5.75 billion acquisition of Gulf Power. NextEra paid USD 4.35 billion in cash and assumed USD 1.4 billion in debt to acquire Gulf Power, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. NextEra already owns Florida Power & Light, the state's largest utility with nearly 5 million customers. As per company officials, with an eye on the future, the deal is likely to pave the way for extending to Gulf Power's customers NextEra’s best-in-class value legacy of low bills, clean energy, high reliability and outstanding customer service.
On 17th December 2018, India Energy Storage Alliance (IESA) and European Space Agency (ESA) jointly announced that they are studying the feasibility and the commercial viability of using data from satellites for the monitoring of power grids and for supporting the development and management of microgrids and utility operations. Potential areas of opportunity identified include asset management, two‐way communication between smart meters and grid operators, prediction of consumption or generation peaks, development of Internet of Things (IoT) services, and the enhancement of virtual power plants. IESA is collaborating with ESA and European TSOs and DSOs to promote microgrids, electric vehicles, and energy storage technologies.
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