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March 2, 2011

Local News: College receives $800K for solar energy program

Filed under: Local News,Local People,News,Solar Energy — Tags: , , , , — Georgia Romig @ 12:22 pm

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 21, 2011

Staff Page Updated! (And New Staff!)

Filed under: Local News,Local People,News — Tags: , , , , , — Georgia Romig @ 1:49 pm

Our Staff Page has been updated to better clarify Student Worker and Graduate Research Assistant positions, as well as to announce the newest member of our staff, Jordan Eason!

Click here to visit.

February 4, 2011

Global wind power capacity increases by 22% in 2010

From REVE:

Global wind energy installations increased by 35.8 GW in 2010. Wind farm capacity up to 194.4 GW, a 22.5% increase on the 158.7 GW wind turbines installed at the end of 2009.

This brings total installed wind energy capacity up to 194.4 GW, a 22.5% increase on the 158.7 GW wind farm installed at the end of 2009. The new capacity added in 2010 represents investments worth EUR 47.3 billion (US Dollars 65 bn).

For the first time in 2010, more than half of all new wind power was added outside of the traditional markets in Europe and North America. This was mainly driven by the continuing boom in China, which accounted for nearly half the new wind installations (16.5 GW).

Click here to read more.

June 24, 2010

AEI Wins SECO Award for Research Facility

The Alternative Energy Institute has received an award of $497,350 from the State Energy Conservation Office for the installation of renewable energy systems at the Palo Duro Research Facility and at the feed mill at the WTAMU Nance Ranch (Regional Wind Test Center).

The total project cost is around $622,000. The state provided money for renewable energy projects with funding provided through federal ARRA funds. For more information, click here.

Staff Working on the Project:

  • Project Director, Dr. Byungik Chang, Director AEI
  • Principal Investigator, Ken Starcher, Assistant Director AEI

The project, involving solar and wind electricity, will consist of two components:

  1. Photovoltaics (PV), 48 kW for the Palo Duro Research Center.
  2. Wind, 50 kW for the feed mill at the WTAMU, Nance Ranch.

The objectives is to reduce electric consumption at WTAMU through use of renewable energy, as well as providing information on performance and economics of the systems. Information on both systems will be disseminated to the public and business entities through seminars and display areas.

Systems will provide electricity for use on-site and systems also displace the production of carbon dioxide from the conventional power plants.

One proposed system will have two 4 kW tracker units, and 40 kW of fixed tilt, flat plate PV. The PV system will generate an estimated 80,000 kWh/yr.

AEI will also install a 50 kW, 49 ft diameter wind turbine, on a 120 ft tower. The system will generate an estimated 175,000 kWh/yr.

June 9, 2010

FALL 2010 CLASSES: Register Now!

Registration is now open for West Texas A&M University’s Fall 2010 Alternative Energy Courses!

Both courses will be offered online through WTAMU’s Continuing Education department. You must register with West Texas A&M University to sign up for these classes.

Start Date

Classes begin AUGUST 30TH, 2010.

Cost

  • College Credit Cost – Varies, depending on whether you are pay in-state or out-of-state tuition.
  • CEU & Certificate Cost – $720

What Can You Get From the Course?

Course Summaries

If you would be interested in taking these courses, please look at the following course summaries:

How to Register

Prospective students must register through WTAMU Continuing Education.

STEP ONE: Click the “Register and Pay” link on the Continuing Education web site.

STEP TWO: Select the “ENERGY” topic code and hit Submit (not the WIND code).

STEP THREE: Register for the course of your choice!

June 1, 2010

WT to test 50-story wind turbine

From The Amarillo Globe-News:

West Texas A&M University became part of a push Monday to raise expectations for a Spanish company’s wind turbines – machines that could double the power production of today’s standard turbines.

“It will be fundamental research like how to make a better blade with light, robust material, testing aerodynamics, the integrity of blades,” said Theresa Maldonado, associate vice chancellor for research of the Texas A&M University System and director of the Energy Engineering Institute, which will participate.

Gamesa Technology, based in Spain, signed contracts Monday with A&M and several affiliated entities calling for research on energy projects, including a turbine rated at a production capacity of 4.5 megawatts to be installed at WT’s Nance Ranch. The company itself only makes a 2-megawatt turbine now and most land-based turbines don’t exceed that.

Click here to read more.

May 24, 2010

Local News: Texas A&M University System and Gamesa Technology Corp. Announce Plan to Collaborate on Nation’s Largest Wind Turbine

From Alt Energy Mag, concerning WTAMU’s own Regional Wind Test Center:

The Texas A&M University System and Gamesa Technology Corp. (Gamesa) announced an agreement today with the intention to install a new generation of wind turbine at West Texas A&M University, coordinated jointly by the Energy Engineering Institute and the Alternative Energy Institute of the A&M System. The Gamesa G10X (also known as the G128) would be the largest of its kind in the country, while providing substantial advances in production output, energy efficiency and noise reduction.

With today’s signing ceremony at the 2010 American Wind Energy Association WINDPOWER Conference and Exhibition, A&M System and Gamesa officials have initiated a long-term agreement in which the system, through its multiple members, will conduct ongoing research and testing for Gamesa’s energy-related projects. System members include the Texas Engineering Experiment Station (Energy Engineering Institute), Texas A&M University, West Texas A&M (Alternative Energy Institute) and the Texas Transportation Institute. The initial collaboration will involve installation of the Gamesa G10X, a 4.5-megawatt turbine that has a higher tower height and a larger rotor diameter (420 feet/128 meters) than existing land based turbines, which allows it to access better wind resources that further increase its production capability.

Click here or visit Gamesa’s official web site to read more.

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!

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