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Latest HNEI News

Fuel Cell Model Library Now On-line

HNEI and Georgia Tech have developed an open-access equation-based, object-oriented Fuel Cell Model Library.  Developed by HNEI's researcher Kevin Davies in collaboration with Georgia Tech, the library resources support HNEI's research into understanding the effects of contaminants at the cell level and in a system exposed to volcanic gases.  For further information, contact Kevin Davies.

RPS Road-map: Modeling and Assessment

HNEI has contracted with GE Energy Consulting  to evaluate and assess the likelihood of compliance with State Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) requirements by modeling costs, economics and technical implications of various renewable energy penetration scenarios, including comparing the value of grid-tied and generation-tied undersea island interconnections with island independent systems.  Future tasks will include the impacts of using liquid natural gas for electricity generation, modified utility operating practices and reserve requirements, and the use of ancillary services such as demand response and battery energy storage systems. 

GE Energy Consulting gave a presentation of its initial analyses under Task 1 of the Hawaii RPS Road-map Study on January 9, 2014 at the Hawaii State Capitol.  For further information, contact John Cole.
 

Solar Net Zero Energy Classrooms Expand HNEI Research

In conjunction with ongoing projects on energy efficiency and solar research, HNEI is conducting evaluations on six photovolaic arrays recently installed in Hawaii.  The experimental platforms for these efforts will be three net- zero-energy buildings created by California-based Project Frog Inc.

See the press release for more details.  Also, check the Pacific Business News article on this HNEI project.  The HNEI contact for this work is Jim Maskrey

Proposed Battery Energy Storage System on Molokai

HNEI and MECO held a community information meeting on Molokai to present information on a potential battery energy storage project intended to help increase the reliability and stability of the grid. For the Frequently asked Questions (FAQ) and presentation follow the links below:

For a copy of the FAQ sheet handed out at the meeting click here.

For a copy of the presentation from the community meeting, click here.

To see the animation slides from the presentation, click on the following link and run the PowerPoint presentation in "Slide Show" mode. For the animation link, click here.

For more information, see The Moloka'i Dispatch article "$3.1M Battery Proposed for Power Plant".

HNEI Energy Research at Kawaikini School on Kaua‘i

In traditional Hawaiian blessing ceremony, the Kawaikini New Century Public Charter School in Lihue, Kauai, unveiled two new energy efficient classrooms that will anchor the planned expansion of the Hawaiian immersion school.  Students there will now have the unique opportunity to study and experience classrooms that are research and learning platforms.  Two state-of-the-art structures were installed at the school to measure and test the effectiveness of innovative energy-efficient and renewable energy technologies and to compare against similar facilities in different environments, including one at Ilima Intermediate in Ewa Beach, Oahu.   The pre-engineered test platforms were created by California-based Project Frog, Inc. which provides innovative, high-tech component buildings that assemble on site for a greener building with a lower environmental footprint than conventional structures.  At the Kawaikini site, HNEI will also compare the performance of two different photovoltaic and inverter systems.HNEI’s research is aimed at advancing the science and technology behind new construction throughout the Hawaiian Islands and the Pacific region. Download the press release. The HNEI contact for these efforts is Jim Maskrey.  

Liquefied Natural Gas Report Now Available

The report entitled "Liquefied Natural Gas for Hawaii: Policy, Economic, and Technical Questions" has been released.  Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI) commissioned FACTS Inc. to perform the study, selected through the Request for Proposal (RFP) process conducted last year.  The HNEI contact for this report is John Cole.

Hawaii Geothermal Assessment and Roadmap report completed

Under contract to HNEI, the Pacific International Center for High Technology Research completed this report in January 2013, and HNEI is now making it available for review.  To view the report, click here.

Fuel Cell Facility Expands Role and Changes Name

The Hawaiian Electric Company together with the Hawai‘i Natural Energy Institute hosted an event to commemorate the expansion of their research partnership. The facility has been renamed the “Hawai‘i Sustainable Energy Research Facility” (HiSERF). For details, see the HiSERF Announcement.

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Open House for the Water, Energy, and Soil Sustainablity (WESS) Program

The WESS program will hold an open house on Friday, August 31, 2012, from 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm, at the Magoon Research Station, 2717 Woodlawn Drive, Honolulu (across from the Manoa Public Library). The purpose of the open hourse is to present WESS research investigating the effect of biochar-amended soils on plant growth. After light pupus and an overview of the WESS program, presentations will be made by Jerry Ericsson and Jonathan Deenik. Mr. Ericsson is President of Diacarbon Energy, Inc., a Canadian biochar company. Dr. Deenik is an Associate Specialist in Soil Fertivity and Soil Quality.

The open house will then move into the greenhouse for close-up inspection and further discussions. Off-site visits to WESS-funded field crop trials (directed by Dr. Richard Ogoshi, Associate Biofuel Agronomist) will be possible. These trials will characterize crop growth on biochar-amended soils.

For those interested, a short walk will lead to the UH campus for a visit to the demonstration-scale Flash Carbonization™ reactor, after the greenhouse visit (~4:30 pm). Dr. Michael Antal, an HNEI researcher and inventor of the Flash Carbonization™ process, provides the WESS program with small quantities of boutique biochars for application greenhouse trials. Details concerning this process can be seen on the Biocarbons (overview) section of our website.

For more program details, see the WESS brochure and the Water, Energy and Soil Sustainability (WESS) section of our website. Contact Dr. Michael Cooney, HNEI Associate Researcher and PI for the program, for additional information.

Carbon Substitution and Sequestration: Additional NSF Funding

The National Science Foundation (NSF) sponsored Carbon Substitution and Sequestration (CarbSS) project of the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI) is designed to introduce University of Hawai‘i (UH) engineering graduate students to the science of biomass carbonization and combustion, and the characterization of biocarbons through hands-on laboratory studies involving unique equipment housed in HNEI of UH and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).

Download the informational briefing.  Principal Investigator for this project is Michael J. Antal, Jr., Coral Industries Professor of Renewable Energy Resources.

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