Marine Corps. doubles solar capacity with a new installation at Camp Pendleton, a biomass plant underway in China, and Ford’s EV innovations are awarded a patent.
Marine Corp. Doubles Solar Capacity
Camp Pendleton, a military base in California, is the home of the U.S. Marine Corps.’ largest photovoltaic solar panel installation. The 1.4-MW system was a joint project by Kyocera Solar and the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southwest. The system includes 6,300 panels, making it one of the largest in San Diego County. The installation is expected to produce 2,400-megawatt hours per year. That is the equivalent of powering 400 average-sized homes. The investment will save the Marine Corps. $336,000 per year in electricity costs.
Biomass Plant Under Construction in China
A-Power Energy Generation Systems is in charge of developing a 30-MW biomass power plant in Xin County in China. The plant will include two 15-MW power generation units that are expected to be operational by summer 2012. Upon completion, the plant is expected to generate 150-kWh of electricity per year.
Ford’s EV Features Patented
Two patents have been awarded to Ford’s SmartGauge with EcoGuide applications in hybrid cars. The technology helps drivers maximize fuel efficiency for each trip. The EcoGuide coaches drivers to help them achieve the best fuel economy and the gauge measures how close the car is from switching modes so that drivers can adjust their behavior to keep the car in electric-only mode. The feature is available on Ford Fusion Hybrid and Lincoln MKZ Hybrid.
European Energy Market Spikes
Japan’s nuclear crisis brought protesters on the streets in Germany. Protesters opposed nuclear technology, forcing Chancellor Angela Merkel to propose new safety measures. On Tuesday, 25 percent of Germany’s nuclear capacity came off line when Merkel announced that all pre-1980 plants would close, raising prices in the European market. In Germany, power gained 4.5 percent in value in a single session—a gain of this size has not been seen since 2009. Last year, nuclear power provided 23 percent of Germany’s power generation, according to the German Energy and Water Association. This year may not be as high.
How does Japanese Crisis Affect Energy?
Confused about how the crisis in Japan is impacting the energy sector? Check out Argus’s continuous online updates. The international price reporting agency has set up a website with free alerts about how the earthquake can affect energy markets. Changes are already evident in Germany, as we said above. Other headlines include information about Switzerland’s decision to freeze nuclear permission and the latest news on Japan’s oil prices.
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