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News and Feature Stories

The following news stories take an in-depth, behind-the-scenes look at how NREL is advancing energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies.

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April 2018

April 9, 2018

NREL Leadership Contributes to Revision of Key Energy Integration Standard, IEEE 1547

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) has published the full revision of IEEE 1547, which establishes uniform requirements for interconnection of distributed energy resources (DERs), such as solar photovoltaics, with the electric power system. With support from the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Energy Technologies Office, NREL researchers provided leadership and technical support in developing this full revision of the standard.

April 5, 2018

News Release: Perovskite Technology is Scalable, But Questions Remain about the Best Methods

As perovskite solar cells set efficiency records and the nascent technology becomes more stable, another major challenge remains: the issue of scalability, according to researchers at the Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

April 4, 2018

From Preble's Mouse to Rattlers, NREL Biologist Likes Critters

Looking out over the "living laboratory" of NREL's campus, Senior Wildlife Biologist Tom Ryon sees a tapestry that others may not. Everywhere he goes, he can't avoid interactions with nature. Nor does he want to.

April 3, 2018

News Release: NREL Opens Large Database of Inorganic Thin-Film Materials

An extensive experimental database of inorganic thin-film materials that organizes a decade's worth of research at the Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is now publicly available.

April 2, 2018

News Release: NREL Research Overcomes Major Technical Obstacles in Magnesium-Metal Batteries

Scientists at the Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have discovered a new approach for developing a rechargeable non-aqueous magnesium-metal battery.

March 2018

March 30, 2018

Q&A with Sheila Hayter: Laying the Foundation for an Interconnected Energy Future

Sheila Hayter is a group manager in the Integrated Applications Center (IAC), leading a team of experts who support international, federal, state, and local entities with the goal of significantly reducing nonrenewable energy consumption though optimized use of energy efficiency strategies and renewable energy technologies. Along with her NREL work, she is the ASHRAE president elect. We caught up with Hayter to discuss where her roles with ASHRAE and NREL intersect.

March 27, 2018

Transportation Research Fueled by Academia

NREL's long history of successful partnerships with universities includes collaborating on transportation research projects, as well as joint appointments and sustaining a thriving host of internship programs. Over the past few years transportation researchers have collaborated with more than 20 universities within the United States and internationally.

March 27, 2018

Koenraad Beckers: A Love of Science Benefits Geothermal Research

In June, NREL researcher Koenraad Beckers will bike from Boise, Idaho, to Yellowstone National Park. The ride is typical for this avid biker. The reason though is unusual. Passionate about geothermal energy research, he wants to observe the hot water in both places.

March 22, 2018

Newly Branded Energy Systems Integration Group Joins International Institute for Energy Systems Integration

The Utility-Variable Generation Integration Group (UVIG) is broadening its reach among the ESI community, joining with the International Institute for Energy Systems Integration (iiESI), and changing its name to the Energy Systems Integration Group (ESIG).

March 22, 2018

News Release: NREL Discovers Enzyme Domains that Dramatically Improve Performance

By studying and comparing the workhorse cellulose-degrading enzymes of two fungi, researchers from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory have pinpointed regions on these enzymes that can be targeted via genetic engineering to help break down cellulose faster.

March 21, 2018

Johney Green Joins Inaugural Board of Trustees for the UK's Faraday Institution

NREL's Johney Green, Jr. has been chosen to join Faraday's inaugural board of trustees to help set the agenda and support programs for emerging electrochemical energy storage technologies.

March 13, 2018

Return of the Lambkins: Practice Makes Perfect at Colorado Science Bowl

An experienced hand at the buzzer proved to be the formula for success at this year's Colorado High School Science Bowl--hosted by NREL - where 41 teams from across the state competed for a shot to represent Colorado at the DOE National Science Bowl® in April. The teams worked tirelessly through the morning's round-robin competition, 16 of them advancing to the afternoon double-elimination.

March 8, 2018

NREL Briefs Congressional Committee on Impact of Scientific Innovations on Transportation Future

On March 7, NREL's Laboratory Program Manager for Vehicle Technologies John Farrell briefed the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce on how the Energy Department and the national labs are driving innovation to spur advances in the efficiency and performance of fuels, vehicles, and the broader transportation system.

March 7, 2018

News Release: NREL Research Fellow Inducted Into Engineering Academy

Mark O'Malley, a senior research fellow at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), has been elected as a foreign member to the National Academy of Engineering. Only 16 foreign members were chosen this year.

March 5, 2018

O, Canada: NREL Partnership Produces New Take on Alternative Fueling Station Locator Tool

Word of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's (NREL) deep transportation web development expertise recently sparked interest in the United States' neighbor to the north, kicking off a collaborative international effort to launch a powerful new alternative fueling station tool on the other side of the border.

March 3, 2018

News Release: Fort Collins High School Wins 28th Colorado High School Science Bowl

Students from northern Colorado dominated this year's Colorado High School Science Bowl with Fort Collins High School emerging victorious over second-place finisher Fairview High School (Boulder).

February 2018

February 28, 2018

NREL Launches New Website for High-Performance Computing System Users

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Computational Science Center has launched a revamped website for users of the lab’s high-performance computing (HPC) systems at the Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF).

February 28, 2018

High Performance Computing and Cutting-Edge Analysis Can Open New Scientific Realms

NREL recently created the Scientific Computing and Energy Analysis (SCEA) directorate, pairing our expertise in high performance computing with our deep knowledge of energy analysis.

February 28, 2018

Q&A with Adam Warren

Adam Warren, director of the Integrated Applications Center (IAC), discusses IAC's new role in ESI research, and the center's focus for 2018.

February 28, 2018

Unique Procurement Process Expands Microgrid Research Capabilities at the ESIF

Following a rigorous, 21-week dual-stage procurement program, NREL has purchased a Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories (SEL) microgrid controller for installation at the ESIF, enabling new research capabilities to more effectively evaluate microgrid systems and their components.

February 27, 2018

NREL-KPA-Toyota Collaboration Facilitates Permitting of Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle Repair Facilities

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory's Hydrogen Sensor Laboratory was used recently in a partnership with KPA Services, LLC, at the request of Toyota Motors to validate hydrogen sensors for incorporation into their system to adapt vehicle repair facilities for fuel cell electric vehicles.

February 26, 2018

News Release: NREL's Industry Growth Forum and Emerging Markets Day Connect Advanced Energy Startups and Investors

Advanced energy innovation will be on display May 2- 4 in Denver, Colorado, when 30 small businesses present their business cases to a panel of investors and industry experts as the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) hosts its annual Industry Growth Forum (IGF).

February 26, 2018

Ten Years of Analyzing the Duck Chart: How an NREL Discovery in 2008 Is Helping Enable More Solar on the Grid Today

In February 2008, a team of NREL analysts led by Paul Denholm published a paper that examined how to plan for future large-scale integration of solar photovoltaic (PV) generation on the electric grid. They observed a unique change in the shape of the electric load met by conventional power plants when increasing levels of PV are added to the system, and thus identified the earliest version of what was later named the "duck curve" by the California Independent System Operator.

February 22, 2018

How Low Can Conventional Generators Go? NREL Explains Why Minimum Generation Is Key to Maximum Renewable Integration

New study in the journal Energy Policy illustrates the importance of quantifying power system operational constraints to enable more renewables on the grid.

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