2009-09-11 / Top Stories

LIPA Targeting Stimulus Money For Projects

The Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) announced that it has applied for over $17 million in additional federal stimulus funds with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for three separate renewable energy projects.

Each of the three initiatives is intended to gain a better understanding on how LIPA can maximize the energy generated from solar and wind power. If approved, the DOE could fund up to 50 percent of the projects' total costs.

The first two applications call for projects that will allow LIPA to study how to produce greater power from its solar arrays, achieve better integration from the arrays onto the LIPA grid through the interconnection, and more predictably forecast the amount of energy that can be generated from the sun.

The two studies will further advance LIPA's 50 megawatt (MW) solar generation project, the largest solar initiative in the state, which was announced by Governor David A. Paterson and LIPA President and CEO Kevin S. Law last year. The solar generating facilities would provide enough power to sustain more than 6,500 households and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 20,000 tons. This project will also further stimulate the solar marketplace throughout the state, fostering the creation of more clean energy jobs. The 50 MW of solar energy builds on the success of LIPA's Solar Pioneer program, which boasts more than 1,900 participants and has resulted in more than $47 million in LIPA rebates.

LIPA has filed a third application as part of a consortium with Stony Brook University, Alliant Techsystems (ATK), Clipper Wind Power, Consolidated Edison (Con Ed), and IBM to study the future development of wind power. The consortium's main focus will be concentrating on how to maximize energy from wind turbines and their infrastructure such as wind blades and gear boxes.

Paterson said, "These projects will help to make New York the global leader in the clean energy economy. It is projects like these that will make it possible for New York to meet 45 percent of its electricity needs through renewable energy and efficiency by 2015, creating 50,000 jobs. I urge the Department of Energy to carefully consider these excellent proposals."

"We need to reduce our dependence from fossil fuels" said Law. "These applications are consistent with Governor Paterson's 45x15 initiatives and reinforce my commitment to secure key federal dollars to expand our renewable portfolio, while stimulating the local economy with the creation of new clean energy jobs."

It is hoped that the results of these projects will continue to improve renewable energy to make it more efficient, and less expensive to achieve.

Descriptions for each project submitted for federal stimulus funding are as follows: • Modeling and Validation of a 37 MW

PV Array - Requested $4,500,000 to pursue a joint venture among LIPA, Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) and British Petroleum Solar (BP Solar) with the overall objective of making use of the 37 MW photovoltaic (PV) array to be constructed at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) to further develop the understanding of the effects of various levels of penetration of solar electricity on the reliability and stability of electric power distribution systems. Advanced Modeling and Verification for High Penetration PV - Requested $1,019,000 for this proposal that seeks to enhance PV performance and grid modeling to fully integrate with existing software used for distribution circuit design and analysis. This technology will allow utilities to better understand the full behavior and technical impacts of high-penetration PV and lead to new distribution design tools that will allow utilities to better plan and manage their distribution systems under high penetration PV scenarios. LIPA will be working directly with Clean Power Research (CPR) and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to test and validate the tools and underlying analytical models. Wind Energy Consortia between Institutions of Higher Learning and Industry - Requested $11,887,584 through a group comprised of LIPA, Stony Brook University, Alliant Techsystems (ATK), Clipper Wind Power, Consolidated Edison (Con Ed), and IBM will study wind turbine development, performance testing, and operations. The study will focus on addressing technology challenges interposed between the current commercial state-of-the-art in wind turbines and the objective of achieving 20 percent wind energy in the United States by 2030.

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