Assessing the effect of PV generation on distribution system voltages

  Utility distribution systems have seen a huge increase in distributed energy resources (DER) in recent years not only due to renewable portfolio standard requirements but also government financial support. Furthermore, it is becoming much more common for DER generation levels to significantly exceed the local load on the feeder to which it will be […]

Reliable power for data and telecommunications sites

  Fuel cells are finding increasing use in the ICT sector, both as back-up power and as primary power sources, and are proving to be an effective alternative to traditional battery and diesel generator backup systems, in a variety of applications, from small remote telecommunications sites, to large data centres. Fuel cell technology features both […]

Lightning and surge protection for rooftop PV systems

  According to the South African Photovoltaic Industry Association (SAPVIA), photovoltaic (PV) is the fastest growing power generation technology in the world. Between 2006 and 2009 the installed capacity globally grew on average by 60% per annum. These systems are exposed to all weather conditions and are expected to be able to withstand them over […]

The economics of fracking: Resources, reserves, and recovery efficiency – Part three

  Part three of this article deals with the use of fracking resources in transport and other applications by countries which are already active in this field. Parts 1 and 2 may be found here: www.ee.co.za/article/economics-fracking-resources-reserves-recovery-efficiency.html, www.ee.co.za/article/economics-fracking-resources-reserves-recovery-efficiency-part-two.html One lesser known use for natural gas – including liquefied natural gas (LNG) – is for transport. While not ideal […]

Using smart storage to enhance rooftop solar performance

  Rooftop , or own generation, solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, are being installed by many commercial and industrial users, including mines, with the aim of reducing energy costs and increasing security of supply. What many users don’t realise is that the load profile results in unused energy which may be utilised to gain further advantages […]

Benefits of continuous improvement in energy management

  Using its own energy monitoring system, Endress and Hauser detected that the ventilation system of one of its buildings was using almost three times the energy of any other. As a result, the company starting looking for a method of improving its energy saving and efficiency programme at its production centre. In 2012, in […]

Gas to electric power generation potential

  Gas power generation (GPG) has increased significantly in the past few years , with gas overtaking coal in some countries. GPG offers greater efficiency and lower CO2 emissions than coal, as well as other operational advantages. The shale gas potential in South Africa as well as natural gas discoveries in southern Africa have increased […]

South Africa: Electricity pricing paralysing the poor

  The electricity sector in South Africa has been in a state of disruption over the last few years. The country’s power utility company, Eskom, has been under scrutiny for several reasons. Most of these reasons relate to the rolling blackouts, load-shedding episodes of 2007/8 and high levels of inefficiency. Constant tariff increases under the […]

Promoting energy access: Meeting the challenge with cogeneration

  The International Energy Agency reports that nearly 1,3-billion people still lack access to electricity, and two-thirds of those people live in ten countries – four in developing Asia and six in sub-Saharan Africa. The agency estimates that nearly $1-trillion in cumulative investment is needed to achieve universal energy access by 2030 [1]. In its […]

Losses and costs associated with HVDC and UHVDC transmission lines

  Reduction in electrical energy consumption requires power utilities to employ most efficient ways of electrical energy delivery from generation to distribution infrastructures. For bulk power transfer over long distances improved transmission efficiency is a primary target to ensure less electrical energy losses and costs. The application of conventional HVDC schemes at 500 kV DC […]