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December 16, 2009

NEW CLASS: Renewable Energy – Overview

ONLINE, Spring 2010

  • For Credit, must be admitted to WTAMU
    • Undergraduate: ET 4395-70, Research/Problems
    • Graduate: ET 6392-70, Seminar/Engin Tech
  • Continuing Education, ENRGY 1000-01, 4.5 CEU units, Cost $720

Enroll through Continuing Education,  Dec 16 – Jan 20 or call 806-651-2037

How to Register and Pay (THROUGH CONTINUING EDUCATION)

  • Under Topic Code, select ENRGY Renewable Energy, then click submit.
  • Click in the box, then submit and fill out personal form and pay.

Instructors

Nelson and Starcher have taught two courses online a number of times: 1) Wind Energy and Wind Turbines, and 2) Solar Energy. They have over 60 years experience in renewable energy, primarily in wind energy. Drs. Nelson and Chen have been thesis chairs on a number of projects at AEI. Department of Engineering and Computer Science and AEI are developing a renewable energy degree program.

Course Description

Renewable Energy (ET 4395-70) is an overview course with the use of spreadsheets for some analysis.

At the end of the course you should be able to:

  • Understand energy and power as it relates renewable energy production.
  • Be able to analyze data and predict energy production of renewable energy systems.
  • Understand operational parameters of renewable energy systems (mechanical, electrical, control).
  • Size systems and predict performance.
  • Understand institutional issues; local, environmental, and national.
  • Calculate economic values from simple payback to life cycle costs.

Course Information

No Required Text

  • Suggested Textbooks
    • Vaughn Nelson, Wind Energy, Renewable Energy and the Environment, CRC Press, 2009
    • Robert Foster, Majid Ghassemi and Alma Cota, Solar Energy, Renewable Energy and the Environment, CRC Press, 2010
    • Aldo Vieira da Rosa, Renewable Energy Processes, 2nd ed, Academic Press, 2009
  • General:  Godfrey Boyle, Ed., Renewable Energy, Power for a Sustainable Future, 2nd ed, Oxford University Press, 2004

Dr. Nelson is in the process of writing textbook, Renewable Energy, Overview, so online course will cover much of the same material.

RENEWABLE ENERGY: OVERVIEW

TABLE OF CONTENTS

  • 1.0 Introduction
  • 2.0 Energy
  • 3.0 Sun
  • 4.0 Heat transfer and storage
  • 5.0 Solar heating and cooling
  • 6.0 Concentrating Collectors
  • 7.0 Photovoltaics
  • 8.0 Electricity
  • 9.0 Design of systems
  • 10.0   Wind Energy
  • 11.0   Biomass
  • 12.0   Geothermal
  • 13.0   Micro and Mini Hydro
  • 14.0   Applications
  • 15.0   Ocean
  • 16.0   Storage
  • 17.0   Institutional
  • 18.0   Economics

Tentative Schedule

Cover one to two chapters per week.

Week Of

Topic

1/11

Orientation (WTOnline), for students new to online
Ch 1

1/18

Ch 1

1/25

Ch  2

2/1

Chs 3, 4

2/8

Ch 5

2/15

Ch 6-7

2/22

Ch 8

3/1

Ch 9

3/8

Ch 10

3/11-14

Midterm Test  Chs 1-8

3/15-19

Spring Break

3/22

Ch 11

3/29

Chs 12, 13

4/5

Chs 14, 15

4/12

Chs 16, 17

4/19

Ch 18; Graduate Students Final Project Due

4/26

Review

4/30 -5/6

Final

December 3, 2009

NOW HIRING – Research Technician

Filed under: Jobs,Local News,News — Tags: , — admin @ 3:26 pm

AEI is looking for an Alternative Energy research technician. An associate in tech required, but a BS is preferred.

A criminal history report will be obtained on position finalists. WTAMU is an EO/AA employer. Applicants must be registered with selective service to apply. Applicant should apply online and attach resumes, references, etc., to the online application located at http://www.wtamu.edu/employment.

You can also call us at 806-651-2295.

November 19, 2009

Wind energy conference touts opportunities for agriculture

Texas A&M’s AgriLife has a great write-up our own Dr. Vaughn Nelson and the future of Wind Energy…

Texas farmers and ranchers likely will see more opportunities come about in the future when it comes to wind energy, according to a Texas A&M System expert.

Dr. Vaughn Nelson, professor emeritus and director of the Alternative Energy Institute at West Texas A&M University, predicts small wind systems, those that produce one kilowatt up to 100 kilowatts or more, will receive more interest in the future when it comes to generating power for the farm and ranch, as well as tapping into potential power markets.

“My personal opinion is we may see in the future a farmer or rancher go to a banker some day and say they want to finance a wind turbine just like they would a farm implement,” Nelson said. “They would pay that off in five to seven years, (then be in a profitable situation.)”

Nelson was a panel speaker recently at the Texas/European Union Wind Energy Symposium sponsored by the European Union Center at Texas A&M University in College Station. Co-sponsors included Texas AgriLife Research.

Read the rest (and watch the video!) here!

AEI accepts TXSES donation to the Starcher-Nelsom Renewable Energy Scholarship

Filed under: Education,Local News,News,Texas News — Tags: , , — admin @ 3:26 pm

AEI appreciates the donation of $1,000 by The Texas Solar Energy Society (TXSES) to the Starcher-Nelson Renewable Energy Scholarship.

TXSES in a non-profit with a long history of solar energy and renewable energy outreach education. Founded in 1976, TXSES has been serving Texas for more than 30 years, and has developed a national reputation due to their higher profile projects. These projects include the 11th annual Renewable Energy Roundup and Sustainable Living Fair in Fredericksburg in late Sept 2010, the largest sustainability event in the South.  TXSES will also co-produce the 14th annual Austin Cool House Tour with Austin Energy Green Building on June 6, 2010. And because of an invitation from the town of Salado, they will produce the first Renewable Energy Stampede and Green Living Fair in that fair city April 17 & 18, 2010.

TXSES is part of the American Solar Energy Society and has chapters in Houston, North Texas, El Paso, Austin and San Antonio.

The Starcher-Nelson Renewable Energy Scholarship is an excellent fit for the TXSES mission to increase the awareness of all renewable energy applications and promote the wise use of sustainable and non-polluting resources.

AEI Gets $75k to build new Wind Test Center

Filed under: Local News,Local People,News — Tags: , , , , , — admin @ 2:29 pm
75k-1

Brian Jennings from AEDC, David Carr and Vaughn Nelson

AEI has been given $75k by the Amarillo Economic Development Commision for its new test center at the Nance Ranch. The check was presented by Bryan Jennings. The money will be used to help AEI relocate from our current location to the new center. Moving to the test center will be done in November. The new test center will open during the summer of 2010.

October 9, 2009

International News: “The Boy who Harnessed the Wind”

Here is a clip from The Daily Show, interviewing William Kamkwamba (now 22) an who built a wind turbine out scraps in Africa.

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
William Kamkwamba
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political Humor Ron Paul Interview

You can find out more about Kamkwamba and his book here.

National News: AEI’s Vaughn Nelson on Oil Dependence

Filed under: Economics,Local People,National News,News,Oil — Tags: , , , — admin @ 12:02 pm

The Washington Times published an article by AEI’s Vaughn Nelson about how we can curb our dependence on foreign oil. Here is an excerpt:

Every president since Richard Nixon has touted energy independence; however, neither presidents nor Congress had the fortitude to require the sacrifices from the American people necessary for a rational energy policy.

Politically, even today, it is not feasible because it would require an energy policy that takes into account all costs for energy, new regulations and taxes that would require a major change for business and consumers.

Business entities always couch their concerns in terms of economics (“the bottom line”), but there are different types of economics: pecuniary (ordinary economics, dollars), social and physical. Social costs (externalities) are those borne by everybody, and they may be negative or positive.

You can read the rest of the article here.

The article was intended as a counterpoint to the oil company’s POV on the issue, but that counterpoint was not finished.

September 25, 2009

New Staff Member!

Filed under: Local News,Local People,News — admin @ 6:12 pm

We’ve got a new staff member here at AEI… student worker, Sunny Bhatia!

September 10, 2009

WTAMU Establishes Renewable Energy Scholarship

From West Texas A&M University’s web site, breaking news about AEI and wind energy education at WTAMU:

With more than 65 years of research experience in renewable energy  between them, it’s no surprise that Dr. Vaughn Nelson and Kenneth Starcher are establishing the Starcher—Nelson Renewable Energy Scholarship for students at West Texas A&M University.

The two men, who have worked at WTAMU’s Alternative Energy Institute (AEI) since it was founded in 1977, have seen an increased interest in renewable energy and believe the scholarship will benefit students interested in studying alternative sources of energy.

“We’ve been teaching online introductory courses in wind energy and solar energy since 1998, and we get people from all over the world in the wind energy course,” Nelson, director of AEI, said. “They take the classes for continuing education credits or for certification.”

And there is a definite interest in the courses.

Click here to read the rest of the press release.

August 21, 2009

AEI & Class 4 Winds Talk Wind on KGNC-AM

Class 4 Winds and AEI’s Ken Starcher will be discussing wind energy and wind power development in the Panhandle on KGNC-AM. The show starts at 10 AM, and you can listen to it live here! (You’ll need to sign up to KGNC-AM’s Listener Club first.)

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