July 25, 2011
Texas Monthly will be publishing an article featuring the Alternative Energy Institute‘s former director, Dr. Vaughn Nelson. Nelson was also a professor at West Texas A&M University and recently authored the book Wind Energy: Renewable Energy and the Environment.
Here is a brief preview of the article A Mighty Wind (by Kate Galbraith and Asher Price).
One cool Lubbock afternoon in 1979, Father Joe James made a kite. He nailed together a small wooden cross, glued paper across it, and on the long tail of twine tied streamers every five feet. Then he walked out of St. John Neumann Catholic Church, the energy-saving, below-ground house of worship he had designed, climbed up a modest slope, and launched the contraption above the church’s school and football field. Staring up at the fluttering streamers, he could gauge which way the wind was blowing and where it blew hardest.
To read more, click here. Texas Monthly requires you to subscribe in order to read it’s full articles.
Thank you Class 4 Winds for giving us a heads up on this!
July 19, 2011
Congratulations to Cesar Ramos, our new Research Technician! He will be joining the AEI Staff on August 1st, 2011.
And to our former Field Assistant, Jeff Ludlum, thanks for all you’ve done for AEI!
July 18, 2011
More local news via the Amarillo Globe-News! This article is by Kevin Welch.
Xcel Energy plans on moving an idle turbine from near Borger to Tucumcari, N.M., to provide backup power there. The unit has provided additional power during peak demand using natural gas, said Xcel spokesman Wes Reeves, but the company will convert it to run on diesel fuel.
For more, click here to read the full article.
Local News by Yann Ranaivo from the Amarillo-Globe News:
Some time in the future, Earth will run out of the fossil fuels available for producing energy.
Vaughn Nelson, a retired West Texas A&M University physics professor, stresses that point in “Introduction to Renewable Energy,” a textbook released this year that discusses how renewable sources can be used to help the world rely less on coal, natural gas and oil in the future.
The work in the textbook stems from lessons Nelson taught during a WT course on renewable energy last year, he said.
“As I told my students all along, the first thing is conservation and energy efficiency and the second priority is renewable energy,” he said. “We’re going to have to shift that way, especially given all the money we send overseas for imported oil.”
Nelson’s book is part of a much greater push to increase the use of energy from wind, the sun, water and biomass.
To read the rest of the story, click here! To find out more about Nelson’s book, Wind Energy: Renewable Energy and the Environment, check it out on Amazon.
June 9, 2011
AEI is looking for an Alternative Energy research technician. Go to jobs.wtamu.edu to apply and see the full job description. Here are the basics:
Will be in charge of daily operations, installations and maintenance at the AEI Regional Wind Test Center. This will involve installing turbines, towers, and data acquisition systems. Duties also include maintaining shop, buildings, and property in safe and organized fashion. Training will be provided as needed. Will oversee up to 6 part time employees assisting with duties. Travel may be required up to 25%.
Skills and/or Expertise Needed
- Associate Degree or equivalent technical experience with the following:
- Mechanical and electrical background.
- Familiarity with gearboxes, electric motors, minor plumbing, and ability to interpret and follow drawings.
- Good writing and record-keeping skills.
- Must be able to climb to 330 ft.
- Willing to work in adverse weather conditions.
- BS in Mechanical, Electrical, or Agricultural Engineering or a BS in Engineering Technology.
- Climbing certification.
Interested? Here are instructions on how to find the job description and apply.
To Find Job Description
- Go to jobs.wtamu.edu.
- Click Search Postings.
- Search for Job Position: Research Technician, or Department: Alternative Energy Institute or enter Job Number: 60579.
Click Apply for this Posting on the Job Listing.
May 18, 2011
AEI welcomes its new staff members:
- Secretary – Katie Perkins
- Data Assistant – Miguel Grijalva
- Field Assistant – Taehee Jung
- Field Assitant – Jeff Ludlum
We also say goodbye to the following people:
- Jennifer – Previous Secretary
- Abhijit – Previous Field Assistant
All of the new staff members are student workers. You can find out more about them on our staff page, and be sure to check out the new staff photos on Facebook!
March 25, 2011
Here is this week’s Renewable Energy News Round Up! This is a collection of new, important or offbeat renewable energy news we’ve found throughout the week.
Report: U.S. solar $6 billion industry in 2010
By Candice Lombari at CNET GreenTech
The U.S. solar market grew 67 percent from a $3.6 billion market in 2009 to $6 billion in 2010, according to “U.S. Solar Market Insight: 2010 Year in Review,” a report released this month by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and GTM Research.
California installed the most photovoltaics last year, with 258.9 megawatts of direct current (MWdc), followed by New Jersey in second place with 137.1, and Nevada with 61.4. Others on the Top 10 list in order of greatest installations included Arizona, Colorado, Pennsylvania, New Mexico, Florida, North Carolina, and Texas.
Austin legislators push solar energy measures
Texas is the top-producing state for wind-generated electricity just 12 years after a legislative deal jump-started the industry.
The Legislature is now debating whether Texas should provide a similar subsidy for other renewable energy sources that, according to proponents, would kick-start solar, geothermal and biomass as job-producing industries. The goals also would be to diversify the state’s renewable energy base and help the environment.
PUC approves line route to transmit wind energy
The pace of wind energy transmission approvals for the Panhandle is building from a breeze to a gale with another route finalized and the last two moving along.
The Public Utility Commission approved a line route from near Lefors to the Panhandle area on Friday that could cost $62 million for about 40 miles of high-voltage transmission. That will put the cost of the three segments Cross Texas is building at more than $200 million, according to the company.
What did you think of this week’s Renewable Energy News Roundup? Anything else you think we should have covered? Comment on our fan page
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and let us know!
March 2, 2011
Local News by Brandon Carpenter from The Ranger (Amarillo College’s student newspaper):
The renewable energy department has recieved a three-year grant of more than $800,00 from the National Science Foundation to develop a solar energy program.
Part of the money from the grant has been used to hire Arthur Schneider as a director of renewable energy technology and instrumentation technology.
“We are going into some unknowns, and we want to see what other programs are doing,” said Jack Stanley, chairman of the Sciences and Engineering Division.
“The grant will allow us to travel to Austin, Houston, places in New Mexico and Colorado to see the many different programs out there.”
To read the rest of the story, check out the print edition of this week’s AC Ranger! Visit The Ranger’s web site for info on how to subscribe.
February 25, 2011
National News from REVE:
The cost of wind turbines on the main international wind farm markets fell below one million euro per MW, which is the lowest wind power generation cost that was ever registered.
Oversupply and increased manufacturing efficiency. According to the most recent edition of the Wind Turbine Price Index published by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, this is why in 2010 all major wind farm markets registered a sharp fall in prices of onshore wind turbines.
The Bloomberg NE index examined more than 150 sale contracts of onshore wind turbines, for a total of nearly 7,000 MW in 28 countries around the world, focusing on Europe and the Americas. It was found that in the first half of the year the average price of wind turbines for the buyer was 980,000 €/MW (with peaks of 900,000), recording a 7% decrease over the previous year and a 19% drop compared with the peak reached in 2007-2008.
Click here to read more.
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National News from International Center for Trade and Sustainable Development:
US President Barack Obama proposed on Valentine’s Day to boost funds for clean energy research and deployment in his 2012 budget by slashing subsidies for fossil fuels such as oil, gas and coal. The announcement comes at a time of great sensitivity on issues related to government support for clean energy, following the US launching of a WTO dispute against China’s support for wind power manufacturing and Japan’s WTO challenge against Canadian green energy subsidies (see Bridges Trade Biores, 24 January 2011 and 24 September 2010 respectively).
But despite these conflicts and resistance from lobby groups, Obama has maintained his focus on the importance of the industry, including clean energy technology among a few singled out as part of “our generation’s Sputnik moment” in his State of the Union address.
Click here to read the rest of the article.
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