Wednesday, March 18, 2009

What's keeping me so busy, and link to smart grid article

I haven't posted for a little while because I have been fully occupied with:
-Modifications to make the CHASE-10 Engine Monitor-Controller (CE-MORE) easier to use,
-working on the next upgrade to the CE-MORE that will allow active control of the engine (which I also intend to be related to my masters degree paper) .
-Starting my last two classes for the masters degree course.
-Planning how to complete the modifications to the CE-MORE gui to put all the system specific configuration data into separate files.
-Working with the other engineers as we prepare to move the test facility to a different location, ie start to put together procedures for making the CE-MORE portable.

In spite of all this activity, I had time to read this article on the Wall St Journal about a trial smart grid project in Boulder, Colorado, which is similar to what I talked about in a previous post (I'll have to start calling this an energy blog!). There's no indication that the users will be given the opportunity to preselect a cutoff cost for their power usage, as I had proposed, however I did notice that the power utility, Xcel, wants to be able to modify the power cost at 5 to 10 minute intervals, which suggests that customers really, really ought to be able to cut off power to their appliances or modify the thermostat automatically at a price threshold. If this were the case, I don't think many people would need or want to track their electricity usage in such minute detail as the article described.


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