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Title: Energy Technologies Research and Education Initiative

For this project, the intended goal of the microgrid component was to investigate issues in policy and technology that would drive higher penetration of renewable energy, and to demonstrate implementation in a utility system. The work accomplished on modeling the dynamics of photovoltaic (PV) penetration can be expanded for practical application. Using such a tool those involved in public policy can examine what the effect of a particular policy initiative, e.g., renewable portfolio standards (RPS) requirements, might be in terms of the desired targets. The work in the area of microgrid design, protection, and operation is fundamental to the development of microgrids. In particular the “Energy Delivery” paradigm provides new opportunities and business models for utilities. Ultimately, Energy Delivery could accrue significant benefits in terms of costs and resiliency. The experimental microgrid will support continued research and allow the demonstration of technology for better integration of renewables. The algal biofuels component of the project was developed to enhance the test facility and to investigate the technical and economic feasibility of a commercial-scale geothermal algal biofuels operation for replication elsewhere in the arid Southwest. The project was housed at New Mexico State University’s (NMSU’s) Geothermal Aquaculture Facility (GAF) and a designmore » for the inoculation train and algae grow-out process was developed. The facility was upgraded with modifications to existing electrical, plumbing and structural components on the GAF and surrounding grounds. The research work was conducted on biomass-processing, harvesting, dewatering, and extraction. Additionally, research was conducted to determine viability of using low-cost, wastewater from municipal treatment plants in the cultivation units as make-up water and as a source of nutrients, including nitrogen and soluble phosphorus. Data was collected on inputs and outputs, growth evaluation and chemical composition of algal biomass feedstock. Also, research was completed on evaluating inoculation train, algae grow-out units, indoor cultivation units and the algal biomass dewatering units to identify opportunities for recapturing waste energy, water and biomass in the individual units or any combination of these units. A preliminary economic analysis was conducted.« less
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  1. New Mexico State Univ., Las Cruces, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States