Renewable Energy Systems Alaska

Renewable Energy Systems Alaska – How does Green Sun Rising harness the power of the sun in The Great White North? With the help of solar panels and double sided cold weather polyester tape.

Alaska and northern Canada are rich in renewable energy sources. In fact, according to recent estimates, nearly a quarter of Alaska’s energy is provided by hydro and wind, with growing interest in geothermal, tidal, wave and biofuel energy. But when you mention solar, people laugh.

Renewable Energy Systems Alaska

Just ask Klaus Dohring, president of Green Sun Rising. Green Sun Rising is an Ontario company that develops and supplies solar systems that produce clean electricity and heat. “When we propose the use of solar energy in the northern community, the usual response is that there is very little or no sunlight in winter. There is a lot of sunshine in the far north,” he said.

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Despite the objections, Green Sun has implemented photovoltaic and solar thermal systems for applications in the Northwest region with great success.

“It is difficult to find cold-resistant adhesive tapes that can mount aluminum profiles in cold subzero temperatures (-25C to -30C) without falling before they are permanently glued,” said Dohring. That is until they know. “The frigid nature allows the aluminum profile to be sealed to the metal facade at the point where the bolt penetrates the metal.”

Due to its very low temperature properties, Green Sun Rising can seal the aluminum profile to the metal surface at the point where the bolt penetrates the metal.

Job done! Microgrid connected to the AWG Arena building in Iqaluit, Arctic East, Nunavut, Canada.

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For more information on how we can help you find the right tape for your job, read about us here or contact us with questions. March 6, 2017 – On the last day of fall, I flew to Unalakulet, Alaska. With a population of around 700, Unalakurete is large by rural Alaskan standards and serves as a regional hub. The village is located in the sandy land where the clear river meets the murky waters of the Bering Sea. Outside the airplane window, the sun shone on the white blanket of the wind-blown sea. To the east, the rolling Nurad Hills, covered in autumn leaves, provide a beautiful backdrop. A line of wind turbines appeared on the ridge when a small plane rolled towards us. Installed in 2009, the facility is one of the first renewable energy installations to pop up in rural Alaska over the past decade.

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In more accessible areas of the planet, renewable energy is often used as a tool to mitigate the threat of climate change, and is installed even if not for financial reasons. But in Alaska, Piper Foster Wilder, deputy director of the Renewable Energy Alaska Project (REAP), says, “The economy, not the environment, is driving the transition to renewable energy.”

This is not to say that this remote Alaskan village does not face environmental problems. Of course it is. In fact, the Far North is warming more than twice as fast as the rest of the planet. When the permafrost melts and the ground melts, it causes instability in the foundations of buildings, damages seas and rivers, and damages coastlines. Coastal villages protected for years by fast-moving coastal sea ice are becoming increasingly vulnerable to storms and floods as the ice retreats, and some communities are moving to safer inland locations, something to be done.

However, in many remote Alaskan villages, electricity prices are among the highest in the country, reaching US$1 per kilowatt hour in some communities (the national average is US$0.12/kwh). The price is due to the cost of transporting fossil fuels (mainly diesel) by plane or barge to remote areas. For example, in western Alaska, where Unalakuret is located, there are no highways, railroads, or power lines. In such a large country, the distance between several scattered communities is daunting. If you can use local renewable energy to generate electricity, the initial cost is almost always worth it.

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“We have up to 99.7% renewable energy,” said Lloyd Shanley, power plant manager at the Kodiak Electric Association. Alaska Peninsula. . KEA’s main resource is the alpine lake in the mountains overlooking the city. Using a little ingenuity, KEA moved penstocks from rough lake runoff to channel water to a turbine system that covers 80% of the community’s electricity needs. Another 20% comes from several wind turbines in the mountains surrounding the city. “Consumer costs haven’t increased in nearly 20 years because of the shift to renewable energy,” Shanley said.

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“Kodiak is supposed to be a template,” Wilder said, but that template needs an asterisk. It’s very successful, but every community has a lot of resources.

The turbines we saw out of the airplane windows as we landed in Unalakleet can generate up to 600 kilowatts, enough to use tens of thousands of gallons of diesel in a year. A similar project is emerging in Alaska. A map of renewable energy projects on the REAP website shows wind turbine icons above and below the state’s coast. Gumbel, Sabonga, Nome, Wales, Shaktrik, Emmonak, Chebak and other wind-powered villages. In fact, wind turbines circling Alaskan villages are so common that they are no longer rare. It is worth noting that this small, isolated and economically challenged community has successfully integrated renewable energy into the existing diesel-based electricity grid. more successful than anywhere else in the world. It’s amazing, and it’s a lesson to apply elsewhere.

Currently, approximately 1.2 billion people on earth do not have access to electricity. And these people have a lot to learn from Alaska. “Instead of large-scale power plants, microgrids are the most efficient way to power an unconnected population,” Wilder said. A microgrid is a small electrical network designed for a single community. For rural Alaska, there are generator-based grids that have been modified to include renewable energy, but developing a microgrid from the ground up will facilitate the incorporation of renewable energy sources. Unlike large centralized systems that rely on large power plants, microgrids provide power to small geographic areas. Ideally, resources such as wind blowing across the hills of Unalakurete and Kodiak’s alpine lake use the country’s abundant renewable resources.

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When people imagine expanding the use of renewable energy to communities in need, they often think of sprawling solar farms, rows of wind turbines, and massive hydroelectric projects, Wilder said. entire. Solved. He emphasizes efficiency first, but other decisions are up to the community.

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“The first thing we address in the community is efficiency,” he said. “Then we work with the power grid, and finally we see the best resources. “This allows us to consider the resources and challenges of each community when integrating renewable energy.

Every community is unique, whether it’s an Arctic village or a small town in Bangladesh, and there is no official solution. If the turbine spins in the cold wind off the coast of Alaska, or in the rapids of Kodiak. when tailored to the community it serves.

Discover the science that is changing the world. Explore our digital archive dating back to 1845, including articles on more than 150 Nobel Prize winners. A group of visitors stand next to three new solar arrays that came online in the village of Buckland in northwest Alaska, Monday, Oct. 15, 2018 (Photo by Nathaniel Herz/Alaska Energy Desk)

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A new renewable energy project in Buckland Village in northwest Alaska aims to demonstrate the potential of solar and wind power to reduce sky-high utility costs in the region.

The village-run power company activated three new solar arrays this week and plans to activate a new battery system next year.

Buckland hydroelectric operator Eric Weber (left) stands at the village’s power plant last week. (Photo by Nathaniel Hertz/Alaska Energy Desk)

Systems like Buckland’s have great potential to lower electricity costs in rural Alaska, where electricity bills are six times the national average and monthly utility bills can exceed $1,000. But big obstacles remain, from technology costs to remote locations.

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Buckland, which currently produces most of its electricity with barge diesel generators, is a trial type. Once the system is fully operational and connected to the existing wind turbine, the village expects to be able to turn off the diesel generator during the summer, according to project designers.

“Everybody wants to — everybody wants to get fuel,” Weber said.

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