A New Magazine for a New NREL Era
As NREL evolves in its mission to help lead the nation toward a clean energy future, efforts are evolving as well to communicate our successes along the way. What you're reading today is the inaugural edition of an exciting new webzine dedicated to stepping beyond the technical journals to reveal the laboratory's vital work in a real-world context for important stakeholders near and far. With each quarterly issue, Continuum will provide incisive insights into the latest and most impactful clean energy innovations, while spotlighting those talented researchers and unique facilities that make it all happen.
Over its 33-year history, NREL has been in on the ground floor of most all of the technologies employed by today's growing renewable energy industries. So it is especially gratifying that we now are working to ensure that those technologies can be deployed and utilized at the scale required to truly really make a difference for the nation. Read on and you'll learn how NREL's wind energy and solar energy research has helped those respective technologies achieve the utility-scale prominence they hold today.
And as these technologies become ever more mainstream, our laboratory is increasingly engaged in an essential next step: finding ways to maximize reliance on renewable resources like the sun and wind, while at the same time maintaining the fundamental reliability and cost-effectiveness of the present-day electricity grid. NREL's much-anticipated Energy Systems Integration Facility—with its own high performance computing center—will offer first-ever, grid-scale modeling capabilities that will allow NREL and utility researchers to simulate the real-time ebb and flow between various electricity generation systems and the fluctuating demands of electricity consumers.
With this and future issues, I hope you find Continuum provides both a compelling and a useful look into NREL's ongoing contributions to our collective energy future.
Dr. Dan E. Arvizu
Director of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Photo credit: Dennis Schroeder
The Continuum team would like to thank the following people for their many and varied contributions to this issue:
Howard Branz, David Corbus, Bill Farris, Don Gwinner, Steve Hammond, Steve Hauser, Robert Hawsey, Roland Hulstrom, Anne Jones, Debra Lew, Tony Markel, Mark Mehos, Michael Milligan, David Mooney, Rommel Noufi, Brian Parsons, Ryne Raffaelle, Paula Robinson, Teri Spinuzzi, Tom Stites, Ray Stults, Craig Turchi, and Vince Guthrie, utility programs manager, Fort Carson Directorate of Public Works.