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News Release NR-4310

IEEE Honors DeBlasio with Steinmetz Award

November 29, 2010

Richard DeBlasio, chief engineer for renewable electricity and end use systems with the U.S. Department of the Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), will be honored by IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers), the world’s largest technical professional association, with the 2010 Charles Proteus Steinmetz Award.  The award will be presented on Dec. 5 at the IEEE Standards Association Awards Ceremony in New Brunswick, N.J.

An NREL employee since 1978, DeBlasio has worked with IEEE members and stakeholders to standardize how renewable resources such as solar, wind and hydro power are to be interconnected with the electricity grid.  IEEE Standard 1547 (Standard for the Interconnection of Distributed Resources with the Electric Power System) removed many of the barriers to using renewable energy sources to complement central power systems and has become the national standard for interconnection.

Before his current role at NREL, DeBlasio served for 10 years as the principal laboratory program manager for electricity research and development programs. Under the NREL and DOE electricity program, research at NREL helps develop interconnection technology and validate testing methods adopted by IEEE and the industry.

“In many ways, efforts at NREL were the genesis of interoperability and integration R&D of the electric power system and the start of modernizing the electric grid utilizing distributed generation, including renewable electric systems,” DeBalsio said. “This is what we are now calling the smart grid. NREL was and continues to be in the forefront of smart grid R&D.”

An IEEE Life Senior Member, DeBlasio has been a member of the IEEE Standards Board since 1998. He was awarded NREL’s Francis Van Morris Award in 2004 for outstanding leadership and sustained dedication to the growth and development of the Photovoltaic Testing and Reliability, Distributed Power, and Distributed Energy and Electric Reliability programs.

DeBlasio holds degrees in electrical engineering from Temple University and Santa Clara University.

NREL is DOE’s primary national laboratory for renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development. NREL is operated for DOE by The Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC.

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