Energy storage is big business, but is it safe?

Aug 15th, 2016 | By

By Lou Covey
Editorial Director

Judging from the number of companies that exhibited at the Intersolar/EES joint conference in San Francisco, energy storage is the next big thing in green energy. It resolves the problem of intermittent over-and under-production that plagues sources like solar and wind. It comes, however, at a high cost to the pocketbook, the environment and personal safety. The good news is that there are alternatives to conventional storage technology. The bad news is those technologies are only now coming to market and are facing an uphill battle with the technology status quo.

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - Intersolar North America Conference at Moscone Center West, Tuesday July 8, 2014.


Wind power has a cost… in human life

Feb 29th, 2016 | By

This is the next chapter of our series on energy production. We take a look at wind power, it’s history, application and challenges.

The first time wind power was put to use was in the sails of boats and for more than two millennia wind-powered machines have been a cheap source of power for food production and moving water. It was widely available, was not confined to the banks of fast-flowing streams, and required no fuel. The Netherlands used wind-powered pumps to push back the sea and wind pumps provided water for livestock and steam engines for over a century.…

Energy Storage takes center stage at Intersolar

Jul 15th, 2015 | By

By Lou Covey, editorial director

The electrical energy storage industry continued to grow in credibility this week at the Intersolar 2015 conference with a co-located show in Moscone West. However, as a possible indicator that it is still a very small market, the Intersolar folks put the show name all in lowercase (ees).

The sector is set to see the installed base grow 250 percent by the end of 2015, year to year, according to GTM research , but according to other reports, that represents a total investment of $2.6 billion world wide. As a comparison, Solar energy installations represent

OpenText offers secure collaboration environment

Jun 16th, 2015 | By

At the 52nd Design Automation Conference in San Francisco, we talked to Rod Simon of OpenText about their collaboration platform, Exceed VA Turbo X that was introduced to the EDA industry at the conference.  With a web-based interface, Exceed VA TurboX is a hybrid solution intended to improve users productivity by enhancing collaboration from any location, securely. Exceed VA TurboX is designed for the enterprise data center so administrators to easily manage and monitor access to sensitive applications and data. Here’s the interview:


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Electric vehicles and hybrids: the science beyond the hype

Jun 16th, 2015 | By

Electric vehicles are all the rage today with politicians and pundits predicting mass adoption within the decade as a significant means to combat climate change. The reality, however, is not often reported and in a controversial presentation at the 52nd Design Automation Conference in San Francisco, Synopsys scientist Peter Groenevelt walked through the bare facts.

In his bottom line was a basic understanding that electric and hybrid vehicles have a place in society but might not be ready for worldwide adoption. In fact, if you don’t live in a Mediterranean climate and don’t live on flat ground, a conventional combustion