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The Alaska Power Association August 7, 2009. Cooperative Research Network. Solving Problems with Innovation and R&D. Tom Lovas Senior Program Manager and Consultant Strategic Alliances, Alaska Coordination National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. Co-op Principal Mission.

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The Alaska Power Association

August 7, 2009

Cooperative Research Network

Solving Problems with Innovation and R&D

Tom Lovas

Senior Program Manager and Consultant

Strategic Alliances, Alaska Coordination

National Rural Electric Cooperative Association

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Co-op Principal Mission

Reliable electric service

at an affordable cost

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CRN Overview

  • Organization and Role

  • Research Focus Areas

  • Advisor Outreach/MAG Programs

  • Alliances/Partnerships

  • Stimulus Projects

  • Participation and Ideas Count!

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Research Arm of NRECA

  • Short-term Relevance & Responsiveness

    • 2-5 Year Focus

    • Monitor, Evaluate, Apply Tech

    • Tech Surveillance

    • Leverage Resources

  • Long-term Planning & Preparation

    • 5-7 years

    • Alliances & Partnerships

    • Tech Gateway

    • Industry Leadership

Central Strategic Resource

  • Collaborative Research

    • Entire Co-op Family

      • Members Business Decision Making

      • NRECA Policy Development

      • Co-op Sister Organizations

    • Trusted Business Advisor

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CRN Governance

NRECA Board of Directors

Cooperative Research Council

Co-op Technology Advisors

Budget & Audit and Quality Control Committee

Membership & Alliances and Partnerships


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Updated Focus Areas - 2009

  • Greenhouse Gas Management & Utilization

    • Keeping fossil generation economically viable

  • Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy

    • Building a sustainable supply base meeting policy, environment and cost needs

  • Delivery Systems Reliability

    • Improving distribution and transmission through research and standardization

  • The “Smarter Grid”

    • Moving systematically but cost-effectively to an “IT-Smart” world

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Log on using your ID and password to get:

  • Reports

    • Original CRN research

    • CRN partners (includes Chartwell, NEETRAC, CEATI, E Source, and DSTAR)

  • Tech Surveillance Magazine

    • Articles

    • Field reports

    • Fact sheets

  • Custom software developed specifically for co-ops

  • Technical guides and more

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CRN Outreach

Semiannual Advisory Meetings

Energy Innovation Summits

Tech Surveillance


Report Distribution

Technology Demonstrations

Industry Conferences

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Supercritical & Ultra-supercritical Boilers

Passive Nuclear Systems

Integrated Gasification

Combined Cycle

Multi-Pollutant Controls

Biomass Co-firing


Animal Waste to Energy Systems

Biofuels and Biomass

CT Solar Inlet Air



Landfill Gas

Advanced Technologies of Current Interest to CRN

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Energy Storage

Electric Thermal Storage

(Ice and Heat)

Advanced Batteries


Compressed Air


Grid Management

Transmission Optimization Systems

Distribution Automation

Power Loss Management

Power Quality Sources

Real-Time Reliability

Advanced Technologies of Current Interest to CRN

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Strategic Alliances

Absolutely Critical

  • CRN strategy:

    • Knowledge of excellent initiatives by many different organizations

    • Harvest and prepare a useable database

    • Outreach strategy for relevant resources

    • Managing those resources for rich productivity

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Strategic Alliances


  • Electric Power Research Institute

  • Idaho National Laboratory

  • West Virginia University

  • Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

  • National Energy Technology Laboratory

  • Univ. of Kentucky: Center for Applied Energy Research

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Carbon Capture SymposiumSupport from WVU-NETL

Held April 30 – May 1, 2009

  • All presentations on CRN website at

    Result # 09-01: CO2 Capture Symposium

  • Video recordings of presentations will be available shortly on a public site.

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CO2 Capture “State of the Art”

Economics and operational impacts of carbon capture technologies for coal fired power plants.

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Power Plant CO2 Capture Key Challenges to Retrofits

Space limitations — 7-10 acres needed for current scrubbing

Major equipment modifications

Regeneration steam availability — can steam turbine operate at part load?

Sulfur — additional deep sulfur removal required for most CO2 sorbents

Make-up power — satisfy need to maintain baseload output

Water availability

Local storage availability (saline formation, EOR)

Scheduling outages for CO2 retrofits

Post-retrofit dispatch implications due to increase in COE

Retrofit triggering New Source Review

Proposed legislation—How much to capture?

Carbon Dioxide Capture from Existing Coal-Fired Power Plants, U.S. Department of Energy-National Energy Technology Laboratory, Revised Final Report, November 2007

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Directives to CRN

  • Increase focus on ‘Algae Technologies’

  • Monitor Only for Amine Scrubbing

    • More appropriate for EPRI and large generators

  • Maintain work on Capture & Sequestration

  • Increase emphasis on Agricultural & Terrestrial Approaches

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INL and CRN Alliance Addresses Hybrid Energy Systems Integration

INL positioned to provide technical coordination, and emerging components for HES configurations

  • INL is an energy systems laboratory with test beds, energy subject matter experts, and energy systems engineering capabilities critical to implementing HES approach

    CRN positioned to lead HES implementation by serving as a “living laboratory” test bed and demonstration site and helping infuse funds into rural economies by funding relevant HES projects in its members’ geographic service areas

  • CRN is part of NRECA, a national service organization representing >900 member generation and transmission cooperatives, serving 40 million people in 47 states.

INL and CRN are positioned to help lead the United States in transforming its energy future through hybrid energy system approaches

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What are “Hybrid Energy Systems”?

Concept advanced through creation of Local and Regional Energy Clusters

  • Examples could include:

    • Integration of renewable energy with conventional fossil energy development

    • Microgrids utilizing renewable energy sources

    • Integration of nuclear energy and unconventional fossil energy development

    • Integrated with multiple-integrated generating sources providing electricity, fuels, and chemical products

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Necessity is Driving Smart Grid Investments

  • Reduced truck rolls

    • Automated Meter Reading (AMR)—low-bandwidth “turtle” meter

    • Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)—two-way communications for improved operations. Half of all co-ops have at least some AMI

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Necessity is Driving Smart Grid Investments

  • Interoperable software: Multispeak voluntary specification

    • Speed data transfer

    • Distribution operations software

    • Internet-protocol based for scalability

    • Supported by 48 vendors, including Siemens and Oracle

    • Harmonize with Common Interface Model

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Demand Response Investments

Co-ops can control 6% of peak load;

almost half have demand response programs:

77% - direct control of water heaters, pool heaters, air conditioners

44% - interruptible contracts

30% - time-of-use or real-time rates

16% - voluntary interruptions

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Energy Efficiency Investments

Light-Emitting Diodes (LEDs)

Low-temperature Heat Pump

Thermal Energy Storage for residential cooling


Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles & Battery Electric Vehicles

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Co-op Large-Scale Investments in Innovation

  • CO2 Capture & Sequestration

    • Basin Electric Power Co-op, ND

  • Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle

    • Wabash Valley Power Association, IN

  • Compressed-Air Energy Storage

    • PowerSouth Energy Co-op, AL

  • Utility-scale Battery Energy Storage

    • Golden Valley Electric Assn, AK

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The Electric Cooperative Network

A national “living” laboratory

Technology is often the most significant variable under a co-op’s control

Solutions are tailored to local conditions and shared among cooperatives

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ARRA “Stimulus” Funding Proposals

Development and Administrative Support for


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Congress’ View of the Smart Grid

Energy Independence & Security Act 2007:

  • Use of digital information and control technologies for dynamic operation of grid, distribution automation, etc.

  • Incorporation of renewables, DG

  • Deployment of automated technologies to operate smart appliances, home automation

  • Integration of storage, PHEV

  • Timely information to consumers and control options, demand response

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Smart Grid Supports 21st-Century Demand

The grid of the last century:

large, centralized plants ship power in one direction — to the customer

The modern grid incorporates new centralized plants with renewables, distributed generation, “aggregated” backup generators, energy storage, and demand-response programs —

seamlessly and safely

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What are the Technologies of the “Smart Grid?”

  • Intelligent electronic sensors, relays

  • Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)

  • Optimization software

  • Data Management Systems

  • Two-way communications for “end-to-end connectivity”

  • Distributed computing

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Proposed CRN DemoEnhanced Distribution and Demand Management

Data generated at any point becomes available at any other point

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Regional Demonstration Benefits

End-to-End Demand Management

Peak Reduction Programs through Two-Way Load Control

Utility-Consumer Technology & Pricing Pilots

Advanced Distribution Grid Management

Integrated Systems Advances & Studies

Meter Data Management (MDM) Applications & Uses

Distribution Automation Applications & Studies

15 Subcategory Activities, for

Practical, cost-effective results

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SG Demo Organization

  • Total project estimate $65+ million, upwards of $32.5+ million from DOE

  • 26 coops across 11 states, incl. G&T

  • NRECA staff, consultants, partners helping define technical needs, requirements, costs

  • Centralized support by NRECA

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Proposed CRN DemoEnergy Storage for Grid Support

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Storage Benefits

  • Defer T&D equipment upgrades

  • Provide arbitrage opportunities

  • Reduce loads at congestion points

  • Reduce ramping impacts of renewables

  • Reduce demand charges

  • Potentially reduce need for new lines

  • Reduce fault-induced delayed voltage recovery

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Co-op Utility-Scale Energy Storage

Defer transmission line through pristine land and shave peaks

Central Electric Power Co-op, SC

Support overloaded substations and shift wind from off-peak to peak hours.

Illinois Rural Electric Cooperative

Support military base and shift photovoltaic generation from shoulder hours to peak hours & add stability to low-inertia system

Kauai Island Utility Co-op, HI

Improve diesel generator operation and shift wind from off peak to peak hours

Kotzebue Electric Assoc., AK

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Premium Power Corporation TransFlow 2000500 kW, 3.7 MWh, 7.4 hours, 480 VLow Cost, High Energy Density, Environmentally Safe, Small Footprint, Long Life (Cycle Life)

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Web Conference

Oct. 21

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CRN Advisory Groups

  • Broad Spectrum

    • Generation, Fuels and


    • Transmission & Substation


    • Renewable & Distributed Energy

    • Distribution Operations Best Practices

    • Energy Innovations

    • Information and Digital


  • Members Serve 3+3 yrs.

  • Seats Available!

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Participation and Ideas Count!

Don’t Hesitate – Join an Advisory Group


Send your research and demonstration ideas

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We welcome your input and involvement.

Thank you!

Tom Lovas

Senior Program Manager


Cooperative Research Network


Courtesy NASA