Viva the Cleantech Revolution

It’s official! Cleantech, the sixth industrial revolution, has arrived on time and in the midst of extraordinary crisis. Like every good revolution, blood is flowing in the streets; the guillotine is en route to Wall Street and the mob is so busy plotting retribution for the excesses of the past that most have no time to consider the future. But as yesterday’s dynasties decay, crumble and fall, a new generation of visionaries is already building on the wreckage of the past. These are indeed troubled times that bear an eerie resemblance to the opening sentence from A Tale of...

Alternative Energy Storage: Enabling the Smart Grid

America’s electric power grid is subject to immense inefficiencies that arise from the interplay between centralized power generation, local power consumption and on demand utility service. To put things into a broad perspective, the nameplate capacity of U.S. generating facilities is about 1 million Megawatts (MW), so if all of our power plants ran 24/7 we would have a theoretical annual generating capacity of 8.7 billion Megawatt-hours (MWh). Since demand for electricity fluctuates on both a daily and seasonal basis, total electric power generation in 2007 was only 4.2 billion MWh, or less than 50% of nameplate...

Investment Ideas From the One-House Grid

In June, I wrote how intermittent power sources such as photovoltaics and wind would have to compete with baseload technologies such as IGCC "Clean Coal" and nuclear for capacity on the grid.  The key problem is that neither baseload technologies nor intermittent technologies are able to match themselves to the fluctuations of demand.  This creates a need for technologies which can fill the varying gaps between supply from these sources, and normal energy use.  From the comments, it seems like I was not completely clear how intermittent and baseload power cause problems for each other, so I will start...

What’s Going On With Beacon Power and RailPower Tech?

Two diametrically-opposed stories for this post: Beacon Power and RailPower Tech . The latter is up 134% on its week-ago closing price, while the former is down nearly 22% over the same period. Beacon Power Corp I wrote about Beacon Power a little while ago. The recent drop in share price is due in large part to the fact that Beacon announced, last Friday (Dec. 29), a glitch at one of its testing facilities in Massachusetts. This was followed by an analyst at Merriman Curhan Ford downgrading the company from Buy to Hold. Almost immediately, the...

Beacon Power Delivers and Connects Smart Energy Matrix Flywheel Demonstration System in New York

Beacon Power Corp (BCON) announced that it recently delivered, installed and connected a scale-power Smart Energy Matrix demonstration system to the electricity grid in Amsterdam, New York. After arriving at the site, the system was connected and turned up to full power, and is now following and responding to live ISO-specified requirements to demonstrate frequency regulation. The project, jointly funded by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Energy Storage Program, is the second such scale-power system Beacon has delivered, in addition to a similar system in California. ...

SatCon Receives a Follow-on Order For a Second Rotary Uninterruptible Power Supply from NIST

SatCon Technology Corporation (SATC) announced that it has received a follow-on purchase order for a second 2200 kVA Rotary Uninterruptible Power Supply (RUPS) on a government contract valued in excess of $1.1 million. SatCon's StarSine(TM) Rotary UPS is designed to provide both high quality electrical power during normal operation, as well as prevent any interruption of electricity to critical manufacturing processes, telecommunication centers, data centers, and healthcare facilities in the event of power grid failures such as black-outs and brown-outs. The RUPS is connected directly to SatCon's patented flywheel for short duration power disturbances and is integrated...

Active Power Receives 6 MW Order from Eaton Powerware

Active Power Inc (ACPW) announced an order from Eaton Powerware for twelve 500 kW DC flywheel systems. These units will ship in the first half of 2006 and be used to upgrade the power infrastructure of an existing data center in the United States.

Active Power Receives 11-Megawatt UPS Order

Active Power Inc (ACPW) announced an order from Caterpillar Inc. for eleven one-megawatt flywheel UPS systems. The majority of these systems will be shipped during the current quarter and will be used to provide power protection for a large datacenter in the United States.

Largest Airport in Mexico Selects Active Power for Backup Power Solution

Active Power Inc (ACPW) announced that the largest airport in Mexico, Aeropuerto Internacional de la Ciudad de Mexico (AICM), has selected its battery-free CleanSource® UPS to protect runway and taxiway lighting. Additionally, a new terminal that will begin construction this year will also be supported by Active Power's battery-free systems. Deliveries against this order started in Q4 of 2005 and will continue through the first half of 2006. Active Power is following a good business model of selling into a niche that it already has a good presence in (FuelCell Energy has a similar practice with Hotels.)...

Beacon Power Announces Third-Quarter 2005 Results

Beacon Power Corp (BCON) reported revenue of $304,064, compared to revenue of $80,902 in the third quarter of 2004, an increase of $223,162, or 276%. Revenues for the nine months ending September 30, 2005, were $1,258,503, compared to $264,793 for the same period in 2004, an increase of $993,710, or 375%. Beacon Power reported a net loss of $2.1 million, or ($0.04) per share, compared to a net loss of $1.9 million or ($0.04) per share for the third quarter of 2005 and 2004, respectively, representing an increase of approximately $0.2 million or 16%. They ended the...

Beacon Power Announces Award of Phase II SBIR Contract for Advanced Flywheel Energy Storage...

Beacon Power Corp (BCON) announced that it has been awarded a contract through the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), and co-funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) of the U.S. Department of Defense. The contract, valued at $750,000, is for the preliminary design of a space-based flywheel energy storage system for satellite applications, and is a Phase II award under the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program of the U.S. Small Business Administration's Office of Technology. Beacon announced completion of an associated Phase I project earlier this year. This was welcome news for this company...

Shares in Active Power Purchased

I currently don't have time to do a complete writeup on this stock, but wanted to let everyone know that I purchased shares in Active Power Inc (ACPW) this afternoon for both my personal portfolio and the mutual fund. The average price was at $3.77. I will updated this post later this afternoon with more details. Updated at 10:00 PM As I mentioned above I purchased shares in Active Power Inc (ACPW) this afternoon for both the mutual fund and my personal portfolio. Active Power designs and sells battery-free uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems....

Beacon Power Delivers Flywheel-Based Power System to Bechtel Bettis, Inc.

Beacon Power Corp (BCON) announced that it has delivered a flywheel-based power system to Bechtel Bettis, Inc., under a contract that it announced in March 2005. The demonstration system, built using a Smart Energy 6 flywheel, is designed to provide a high cycle-life, reliable source of stored energy for a number of potential applications. "This system we've delivered to Bechtel Bettis is an example of our strategy to address additional market opportunities beyond our primary business focus of providing advanced technology solutions for electric power systems," said Bill Capp, Beacon Power president and CEO. "We continue to seek...

New Investment Report Highlights $360-Million Market for Power Grid Frequency Regulation Services in the...

The market for grid frequency regulation services open to new service providers in the United States in 2004 was valued at nearly $360 million - and is expected to increase in 2005 - according to a Technology Brief issued today by Ardour Capital Investments, LLC. Frequency regulation is the target market for Beacon Power Corp (BCON) Smart Energy Matrix flywheel energy storage system, two demonstration systems of which are being built under contract to the California Energy Commission (CEC) and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). The Technology Brief is available online at www.ardourcapital.com, under...

Beacon Power Receives Contract from Bechtel Bettis, Inc. to Demonstrate Advanced Flywheel-Based Power System

Beacon Power Corp (BCON) has announced that it has been awarded a contract from Bechtel Bettis, Inc., to design and deliver an advanced flywheel-based power system demonstration unit. Bill Capp, Beacon Power president and CEO says "...Although this contract is not considered material from a revenue standpoint, these types of projects are significant because they extend our technology portfolio, help defray operating expenses, and can lead to other business opportunities."

Beacon Power Announces Compliance with NASDAQ Continued Listing Requirement Related to Closing Bid Price

Beacon Power Corp (BCON) announced that on March 2, 2005, it received a letter from The NASDAQ Stock Market stating that because the closing bid price of the Beacon's common stock has been at $1.00 per share or greater for at least 10 consecutive business days, Beacon has regained compliance with Marketplace Rule 4310(c)(4). This is wonderful news for BCON.