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News

Page history last edited by Ulrich Bonne 9 years, 4 months ago
  1. Open Fuel Standard,  26 Oct. 2011
  2. DBM Energy Lithium metal polymer to cost 9x less, 1 Sep 2011 
  3. Butanol from old newspapers, August 25, 2011
  4. Renewable power production up on Big Island 12 August 2011
  5. 8th Annual NH3 Conference, 18-21 September 2011, Portland, OR,  http://www.ucs.iastate.edu/mnet/nh3/level5.html

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1. Open Fuel Standard,  26 Oct. 2011, from http://www.energyvictory.net/images/Summary_of_the_Open_Fuel_Standard_Act.PDF

The Open Fuel Standard Act (In the 110th Congress introduced as Senate bill S.3303 and House bill H.R. 6559) will be reintroduced in the 111th Congress by bipartisan teams of members in the House and Senate.

• The economic and security vulnerabilities associated with petroleum dependence stem from oil’s

status as a strategic commodity. This strategic status derives from oil’s virtual monopoly over

transportation fuel, much as in a different era the strategic status of salt was derived from its monopoly

over food preservation.

• Oil’s domination over transportation fuel provides OPEC unacceptable leverage over the global

economy. OPEC holds 78% of world oil reserves and yet, due to a policy of constraining supply,

produces less oil today than it did 35 years ago even as global oil consumption and non-OPEC

production have doubled over the same period.

• Competition and consumer choice in the transportation fuel market would serve to end oil’s

monopoly in the transportation sector, strip oil of its strategic status, and insulate the global economy

from OPEC supply manipulations.

• Existing technology, in the form of flexible fuel vehicles, allows internal combustion engine vehicles

to be produced at little or no additional cost which are capable of operating on gasoline, alcohol

fuels such as ethanol and methanol, or any combination of such fuels, as availability or cost

advantage dictates, providing a platform for fuel competition and consumer choice.

• Fuel flexibility is complementary to other vehicle technologies such as plug in hybrids. It is a simple

and inexpensive feature that should be standard in cars, like seatbelts or airbags. The ratio of flex fuel

vehicles in Brazil increased from zero to 70% of new cars within three years, and thus as oil prices

fluctuate consumers in Brazil can protect themselves by putting alternative fuel in their fuel tank.

• Alcohol fuels such as ethanol and methanol can be made from a wide variety of domestic energy

resources including agricultural waste, energy crops, natural gas, coal, and trash.

Bill Summary

• The CEOs of the Big Three auto companies have repeatedly stated their willingness to commit to

making 50% of new cars flex fuel vehicles or warranted to operate on biodiesel by 2012.

• The Open Fuel Standard Act (OFS) would buttress this commitment with law, thus providing certainty

for investors in a variety of alternative fuels to ramp up production and fuel station owners to install

pumps.

• Specifically, OFS requires that starting in 2012, 50% of new automobiles powered by an internal

combustion engine, and starting in 2015, 80% of such new automobiles, be flex fuel vehicles

warranted to operate on gasoline, ethanol, and methanol, or be warranted to operate on biodiesel.

By enacting the Open Fuel Standard Congress can break OPEC’s hold over the international fuel

market, and insulate the global economy from the threat of future OPEC price manipulation.

 

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2. DBM Energy Lithium metal polymer to cost 9x less

Wall Street Daily – 1 Sept 2011 -- DBM Energy has developed a battery-powered electric car capable of driving 450 km (279 miles) on a single charge. By comparison, the Nissan Leaf has a range of 160 kilometers (99 miles) per charge and Chevrolet’s Volt, about 70 kilometers (43 miles).

DBM Energy’s new advanced battery – Kolibri LMP (Li-metal-polymer) will cost 89% less than existing batteries and will only need to be replaced about every 20 years.  Additional features:

* Weight: A Kolibri is reportedly 29% lighter than the battery pack in a Tesla Roadster.

* Efficiency: A Kolibri can keep an Audi A2 cruising for an astonishing 400 miles on a single charge.

* Charging: You can fully charge a Kolibri battery in just six minutes. The Leaf takes closer to six hours.

* Life cycles: 5,000 -- document the range and longevity

* Green car reports verifies that the DBM Electric car battery is real.

* April, 2011 - For over a year the KOLIBRI battery cells have been performing reliably in electrically powered logistics vehicles.

* Dekra has confirmed the Kolibri pack is not simply vaporware and seems to achieve the kind of figures its makers claim, larger scale testing is planned for later this year.

But don’t expect affordable 375 mile electric hatchbacks just yet. DBM and its battery pack will have some long term testing to satisfy before the cells even get near a major automaker.

 

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3. Butanol from old newspapers, States News Service, New Orleans, LA

Released by Tulane University: Kathryn Hobgood Ray, khobgood@tulane.edu, August 25, 2011

Tulane University scientists have discovered a novel bacterial strain, dubbed TU-103, that uses paper to produce butanol, a biofuel that serves as a substitute for gasoline. The researchers are currently experimenting with old editions of The Times-Picayune newspaper with great success. TU-103 is the first bacterial strain from nature that produces butanol directly from cellulose, an organic compound, says David Mullin, associate professor of cell and molecular biology.

Cellulose is found in all green plants and is the most abundant organic material on earth. Converting it into butanol is the dream of many, says Harshad Velankar, who was a postdoctoral fellow in Mullins lab. In the United States alone, at least 323 million tons of cellulosic materials that could be used to produce butanol are thrown out each year. (U.Bonne comment: 323 Mtons/y = 323e6*2000/6*0.40*196/240 = 17.5 billion gal/y or ~ 12% of US gasoline consumption, assuming a 40% mass conversion efficiency ). Mullins lab first ;identified TU-103 in animal droppings, cultivated it and developed a method ;for using it to produce butanol. A patent is pending on the process.

Most important about this discovery is TU-103s ability to produce butanol directly ;from cellulose, says Mullin. He adds that TU-103 is the only known butanol-producing clostridial strain that can grow and produce butanol in the presence of oxygen, which kills other butanol-producing bacteria. Having to produce butanol in an oxygen-free space increases the costs of production.

As a biofuel, butanol is superior to ethanol ;(commonly produced from corn sugar) because it can readily fuel existing motor vehicles without any modifications to the engine. It also can be transported through existing fuel pipelines, is less corrosive and contains more energy than ethanol, theoretically resulting in improved mileage.

This discovery could reduce the cost to produce bio-butanol, says Mullin. In addition to possible ;savings on the price per gallon as a fuel, bio-butanol produced from ;cellulose would dramatically reduce carbon dioxide and smog emissions in ;comparison to gasoline. The innovative process also could have a positive impact on landfill waste.

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4. Renewable power production up on Big Island

12 August 2011, by Chelsea Jensen (West Hawaii Today), edited by U.Bonne

       Independent geothermal, wind and water power providers produced some 355 million kWh (kilowatt hours) total of electricity in 2010 via power purchase agreements and consistently have met, or exceeded, their contracted production requirements, said Curtis Beck, Hawaii Electric Light Co. (HELCO) Energy Services Department manager. Including power produced by HELCO, the company sold 1100 million kWh of electricity last year, including the above ~35% renewable electricity.

 

Add in some 11.9 million kWh produced by net energy metering (NEM), which allows a home or business to produce its own energy, and the percentage of renewable energy used on the island jumps to about 42 %, he said.  There is now one feed-in tariff (FIT) producer, Hawaii County's West Hawaii Civic Center, which came online Aug. 2 with an expectation of producing up to 250 kW (kilowatts) at full capacity. Power not used by the building will be sold to HELCO at a rate of 18.9 c/kWh.

 

Future renewable energy plans -- The utility agreed to the 2009 Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative that sets an incremental goal of producing 40 % of electricity and 70 % of overall energy through renewable resources by 2030. It must submit an annual status report showing its progress.  In 2010, the Big Island exceeded the requirement by more than 20 %, according to HELCO.

 

Utilities statewide, including HELCO, Oahu's Hawaii Electric Co. and Maui Electric Co., reported 20.7 percent of electricity being produced using renewable resources. HECO reported having 16.6 percent of energy produced renewably, while MECO reported 26.1 percent.  According to the U.S. Department of Energy's Energy Information Administration, renewables accounted for 10 percent of total U.S. electricity generation in 2009.

 

Electric rates not dropping -- While more than a third of the Big Island's power is from renewable resources, consumers have not seen electric bills lowered because rates paid to independent producers are directly tied to the more costly use of fossil fuels to produce energy, Beck said.  The independent producers are paid a rate that reflects HELCO's avoided cost, the cost it would have cost the utility to produce the power itself, of 21.3 cents during peak hours and 18.3 cents during off-peak hours, plus room for a "reasonable" profit, he said.

 

"In the long run, the idea is that we may bear a higher cost now to get a grid where we have a majority of the power being generated renewably, but renewable energy will look much more economical compared to oil," Beck said.

 

In the future, he said the company hopes to tie the cost of independently produced power to production cost versus having rates paid to the producers based on HELCO's production costs. Contracts already in place, many of which are for 20 years or 30 years, would not be affected by a change to avoided costs, he added. "Our goal is to get those future contracts for independent power producers to be less than the avoided cost and that savings would be directly passed on to the customer," he added.

 

Renewable energy's past and future -- The Big Island, Beck said, has for decades used resources other than fossil fuels to power the island's electric grid.

 

Up until the end of World War II, he said, nearly 80 percent of the power produced for the Big Isle came from hydroelectric plants situated along rivers. After the war, through the early 1990s, renewable energy was purchased from sugar companies that burned sugar cane to create power.

 

With the fall of the sugar industry in the 1990s, HELCO had to rely more on petroleum for energy production because the island's population had increased so much between the 1970s and 1990s, he said.

 

"In the 1970s, as much as 40 percent of power used on the island was from renewable resources," Beck said. "We are just getting back to where we were when the sugar companies went under and we lost a lot of our renewable generation. It seems to have always been a tradition of this island that we've been fairly self-sufficient throughout most of our history." By 2015, HELCO hopes to generate 50 percent of its power from renewable sources, he said. Being able to meet that number will require HELCO to secure more independent power contracts.

 

The company has applications before the Public Utilities Commission to: (!) Purchase additionally 8 MW (megawatts) from Puna Geothermal Venture, which already sells 30 MW to the utility, as well as (2) Purchase biofuel from Aina Koa Pono, which might produce 16 or 32 million gallons of biodiesel and biogasoline annually through biomass conversion in Ka'u, to be used by HELCO to produce energy; this is the application that includes a request to charge a ratepayer subsidy or 1/3 c/kWh.

 

If you would like to read our testimony to the PUC regarding the requested 1/3 c/kWh subsidy, click here.

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5. 8th Annual NH3 Conference, 18-21 September, Portland, Oregon
Working Agenda

MONDAY SEPT 19

8:00 am   Welcome and Speaker Introduction - John Holbrook, AmmPower

8:15         Kickoff/Note from the Chairman - Norm Olson, Iowa Energy Center

8:45         Keynote Address - The Alchemy of Air: Roots of the NH3 Revolution -Thomas Hager, author of "The Alchemy of Air"

9:30         BREAK

9:45         Performance of a Compression-Ignition Engine Using Direct Injection of Liquid Ammonia/DME Mixture-- Song-Charng Kong, Iowa State University

10:15       Production of Anhydrous Ammonia from Wind Energy - Anatomy of a Pilot Plant, The Sequel - Mike Reese, University of Minnesota

10:45       BREAK

11:00       Offshore Wind Production of Ammonia: A Technical and Economic Analysis -- Eric Morgan, Jon McGowan, and James Manwell, Wind Energy Center, University of Massachusetts

11:30       Prosperity for Delmarva -- Paul Curto, NASA (retired)

 

12:00 pm  LUNCH

1:00         The Choice of NH3 Fuel for the X-15 Rocket Plane -- Bob Seaman, Reaction Motors Division (Retired)

1:30         Selection of NH3 for Combustion Turbine Use -- Arif Karabeyoglu, Space Propulsion Group

 

2:00         Overview of Lockheed-Martin - OTEC Program -- Robert Varley, Lockheed-Martin

2:30         BREAK

2:45         Reforming and B urning of Ammonia in Micro Hydrogen and Power Generation Systems -- Oh Chae Kwon, J.M. Joo, S.I. Lee, D.H. Um, Sungkyunkwan University, Korea

3:15         Transition-Metal Catalyzed Reduction of Nitrogen to AmmoniaÃ?  -- Andreja Bakac, Aaron Sadow, Oleg Pestovsky and Barun Jana, Iowa State University

3:45         BREAK

4:00         The Dual Fuel Strategy: An Energy Transition Plan -- William Ahlgren, California Polytechnic State University

4:30         NH3 in PEM Fuel Cells -- Mark Bowden, First Element Energy

5:00         DAY 1 END OF TECHNICAL AGENDA

6:00         Barbeque on the River- Enjoy a relaxed evening to network and enjoy while overlooking the scenic Columbia River.

 

Tuesday Sept. 20

8:00 am   Welcome and Announcements - John Holbrook, AmmPower

8:15         NH3 - Fueling Hawaii's Future -- Roald Marth, Hawaii Ku' oko' a Project

8:45         Feasibility for Production of Renewable NH3 in Hawaii for Food and Energy Security -- Guy Toyama and Ulrich Bonne, H2 Technologies, Inc.

9:15         BREAK

9:30         Proton's Wind Energy Liquefaction Unit: NFUEL Units for Storage of Renewable Energy -- Hans Vrijenhoef, Ioanna Aslani and Anish Patil, Proton Ventures

10:00       An Update on Conversion of Biogas to NH3 -- Paul D. Pansegrau, Joshua J. Ziman, Kerryanne M. Leroux, Kristopher J. Jorgenson, Michael E. Collings, John J. Richter, and Bruce F. Folkedahl, University of North Dakota, Energy and Environmental Research Center (EERC)

10:30       BREAK

10:45       Ammonia Combustion with Near-Zero Pollutant Emissions -- Terrence Meyer, Praveen Kumar, Kyle Redfern, and Daniel Diaz, Iowa State University

11:15       Nuclear Ammonia -- A Sustainable Nuclear Renaissance's 'Killer App -- Darryl Siemer, Idaho National Lab (retired), Kirk Sorensen, Flibe Energy, and Bob Hargraves, Institute for Lifelong Learning, Dartmouth College

11:45       LUNCH

1:00 pm   Plasma-enhanced Ammonia Combustion -- Jason Ganley, NHThree LLC

1:30         NH3 Fuel in a Compression Ignition Adaptive Digital Power Engine -- Eddie Sturman, Carol Sturman, and Mike Bowman, Sturman Industries

2:00         Southwest Research Institute and Ammonia Research: Past, Present, and Future -- Jacob Zuehl and Ryan Roecker, SwRI  

2:30         BREAK

2:45         Additional Presentations

4:15         Wrap-Up/What's Next -- John Holbrook, AmmPower

 

 

 

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