Advanced Energy Perspectives

Renewable Natural Gas: a Fuel of the Future?

Posted by Frank Swigonski

Jul 7, 2016 4:57:02 PM

This post is one in a series of feature stories on trends shaping advanced energy markets in the U.S. and around the world, drawn from Advanced Energy Now 2016 Market Report, which was prepared for AEE by Navigant Research.

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Biogas for commercial use is a product of anaerobic digestion, a method in which microorganisms break down organic matter in an oxygen-starved environment, and one of the oldest processing technologies. It is captured in modern land fills (land fill gas, or “LFG”) and biodigesters, which treat a range of organic waste streams. While biogas is a combination of gases and other volatile impurities, its main component (50% to 70%) is methane (CH4), the same as natural gas. As such, biogas can be combusted to produce electricity and heat. It can also be upgraded to pure biomethane or renewable natural gas (RNG) through the process of removing the impurities and other gases, making it suitable for transport by pipeline or compressed to fuel CNG vehicles.

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Topics: Advanced Energy Now

Natural Gas Vehicles Slow Down due to Low Oil Prices

Posted by Frank Swigonski

Jun 28, 2016 10:30:00 AM

This post is one in a series of feature stories on trends shaping advanced energy markets in the U.S. and around the world, drawn from Advanced Energy Now 2016 Market Report, which was prepared for AEE by Navigant Research.

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The unexpected collapse of world oil prices that began in late 2014 persisted throughout 2015 and even accelerated late in the year, driving both manufacturers and consumers to reevaluate their alternative fuel strategies particularly around NGVs. With oil prices now expected to remain well below $100 per barrel for at least several more years, much of the operating cost advantage of NGVs that helped offset the acquisition cost premium has evaporated, particularly in North America. In other regions of the world, natural gas still holds a cost advantage, although not to the degree it has in recent years.

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Topics: Advanced Energy Now

Internet of Things Comes to Life at Home

Posted by Frank Swigonski

Jun 22, 2016 12:00:00 PM

This post is one in a series of feature stories on trends shaping advanced energy markets in the U.S. and around the world, drawn from Advanced Energy Now 2016 Market Report, which was prepared for AEE by Navigant Research.

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The IoT concept, though much hyped for its future potential, is not just coming. It is already well on its way – into the home. Smart thermostats allow a user to remotely control household temperatures via a smartphone. Smart meters can connect to thermostats for DR. Some LED lights have embedded radios that allow the user to remotely control them from mobile devices. Smart appliances and security systems are able to connect via wireless or wired technologies and share status or other data for home automation, safety, and convenience. These devices enable customers to input data into behavioral ef ciency software which can generate recommendations to lower energy use. Though still early, this trend is accelerating as device manufacturers add connectivity to more devices.

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Topics: Advanced Energy Now

As Vehicle Sales Lag, Natural Gas Vehicle Infrastructure Sags

Posted by Frank Swigonski

Jun 15, 2016 12:30:00 PM

This post is one in a series of feature stories on trends shaping advanced energy markets in the U.S. and around the world, drawn from Advanced Energy Now 2016 Market Report, which was prepared for AEE by Navigant Research.

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In order for any alternative to gasoline or diesel to be viable as a transportation fuel, refueling infrastructure needs to be readily available. In the arena of alternative fuels for transportation, natural gas has proven to be one of the most popular alternatives to traditional liquid fuels in many global markets. Natural gas for use as a transportation fuel is available in two forms, CNG and LNG, with the former being by far the more common. CNG is primarily used for vehicles that operate within a limited geographic region, while LNG is more commonly used for long-haul trucking applications. CNG is stored in high-pressure tanks at 3,000–3,600 psi and can be stored for extended periods of time. LNG is stored in low pressure, cryogenic tanks at -259 degrees F.

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Topics: Advanced Energy Now

Integrated Data Center Management is the Next Frontier

Posted by Frank Swigonski

Jun 8, 2016 2:00:00 PM

This post is one in a series of feature stories on trends shaping advanced energy markets in the U.S. and around the world, drawn from Advanced Energy Now 2016 Market Report, which was prepared for AEE by Navigant Research.

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Solar panels help power a North Carolina Apple data center. 

Intelligent buildings integrate software and services to maximize energy and operational ef ciency across building systems—from HVAC to lighting and plug loads. Integrated data center energy management is the implementation of a uni ed intelligent building strategy to optimize both IT and facility resources. As building owners invest in intelligent building solutions to deliver comprehensive energy management, they have begun to look at on-site and enterprise data centers as key candidates for optimization because of data centers’ high levels of energy consumption.

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Topics: Advanced Energy Now

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Advanced Energy Perspectives is AEE's blog presenting news, analysis, and commentary on creating an advanced energy economy. Join the conversation!

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