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Powerit Solutions provided our business with a system that controls our electrical demand very well and they were able to meet our tight delivery requirements at a competitive cost.

Doug Smith
Project Engineer
Rochester Metal Products

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Oct 22, 2014

Blog Images-Solar2Renewable power sources like solar and wind present a challenge for grid operators: balancing intermittent production with power users’ needs. Facilities that produce solar power on-site face a similar challenge. While facilities can draw power from the grid to balance demand that shoots higher than solar production, they’re likely paying more for that power than they need to, which undercuts their solar investment. That’s why, if you’re considering solar, you should also consider a demand management system (DMS).

One advantage of solar power is that production is fairly regular, barring inclement weather and depending on the location (unlike wind, which is highly dependent on weather patterns). For example, you might be able to rely on solar power kicking in at 7 a.m. and dying at 6 p.m. on most days. But there’s some variability within that window, and in some cases the solar power will drop off and the facility will start drawing grid power during the utility’s highest peak period. In short, if your facility has a fairly steady demand level and you add solar, you’ll decrease peak demand, but you’ll probably also introduce some variability. 


Oct 15, 2014

Masthead Images-News Room - ImagesWe’ve been pointing to demand management for some time now as the solution to Europe’s challenges in managing renewables-rich energy grids, so it’s exciting to see rising interest in the strategy—illustrated particularly by the emerging demand response (DR) market.

As Greentech Media recently put it, “Europe’s appetite for demand response is growing, not just to provide grid stability and energy balancing on its solar and wind power–influenced grids on a day-to-day basis, but for years to come.”

Europe’s success in ramping up renewables is accelerating the turn to DR. The need to balance intermittent renewable supplies is a primary driver in some countries, which means those markets initially are likely to skew toward regulation services: DR programs that require participants to dial their energy use up or down on short notice for short periods to maintain grid stability. 


Oct 7, 2014

Masthead Images-Resource Library BoardThe industrial sector is increasingly turning to sustainability programs, and it’s moving in this direction for a variety of reasons – customers are seeking socially responsible partners; investors are insistent that this is the way to go; resources are constrained; costs can be cut; risks can be reduced; and revenues can be generated.

All this is good news.

But, as a recent report from McKinsey indicated, most companies need to bring more discipline and focus to their sustainability initiatives. They also need to set priorities and goals. And they need to create accountability for performance while communicating the financial impact.


Oct 1, 2014

Blog Images-NERCAs demand response strategies evolve to DR 2.0 and utilities and system operators add fast-response DR programs, three things are becoming increasingly clear: program rules will determine the capacity available to the grid from industrial businesses; these businesses will have new opportunities to monetize the energy flexibility built into their operations; and facility automation is essential.

Program design will play a key role in realizing the vision of DR 2.0: seamless grid optimization using DR resources to balance renewable energy generation and demand spikes, and management of capacity resources for maximum economic and environmental benefit. Energy-intensive business will participate—or not—based on several program aspects:


Sep 22, 2014

Masthead Images-Resource Library BoardWe’ve been talking lately about bringing the Internet of Things (IoT) to the shop floor, where a control system communicating with networked machines would enable new levels of production and energy optimization. (See this article in our recent quarterly report for more.) Standard protocols for communicating energy usage information are essential to realizing this vision, and we’re now seeing that puzzle piece click into place.

The major industrial automation vendors have adopted energy information profiles based on open standards and started integrating them into their products. These profiles present energy information and control capabilities in a standardized way via established communications networks.


Sep 10, 2014

Each year, billions of dollars are spent connecting industrial machines, automating manufacturing operations and coordinating these often disparate automation systems.

But connecting these machines to the Internet of Things gives them the ability to join an intelligent network that can help reduce the significant costs associated with automation.

 


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