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OE Recovery Act Blog

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November 21, 2011
EPB’s $226 million Smart Grid Investment Grant project, part of the Energy Department's Recovery Act funding has allowed upgrades on its distribution system and the installation of “smart” switches and sensor equipment for 164 distribution circuits as well as the deployment of approximately 1500 smart switches system-wide. Thanks to these smart grid technologies, EPB saved thousands of hours of outage time for their consumers. | DoE photo
Lessons Learned: An Ongoing Dialogue About Smart Grid

Assistant Secretary Patricia Hoffman explains lessons learned from the recent Southeast peer-to-peer workshop in Charlotte, North Carolina. Many of the attendees represented awardees from the Energy Department's Recovery Act programs, and while they demonstrated success in their work, there was a consistent theme of community involvement as essential to that success.

November 15, 2011
The PNM Prosperity Energy Storage Project is the nation’s first combined solar generation and storage facility to be fully integrated into a utility’s power grid.  Pictured above are the facility's solar panels, including an aerial view in the upper left. | Image courtesy of PNM
Innovative Energy Storage Technologies Enabling More Renewable Power

Solar and wind power provide the means for America to strengthen its energy security, create jobs in growing markets, and improve the environment. Thanks to breakthroughs in energy storage systems, including the first grid-tied solar and storage facility, that potential is getting closer to reality.

September 22, 2011
Brian Andrews is a former meter reader who now works with smart meter and intelligent grid projects. | Image courtesy of CenterPoint Energy.
New Technologies Bring New Opportunities for Meter Reader

Brian Andrews leveraged training programs to transition from being a meter reader at CenterPoint Energy in Houston, Texas to implementing the company’s smart meter and intelligent electric grid projects.

September 21, 2011
Smart grid technology installations provided not only new work, but new customers for Narrows Electric owner Gary Miklethun, far l., and his team, from l. to r., Ken Dehart, Rodney Thomas and Dave Brosie.
Smart Grid Technology Gives Small Business New Light

Gary Miklethun, the owner of Narrows Electric, a small electrical contractor in Gig Harbor, Wash., that specializes in residential and small commercial projects, definitely felt it when the economy slowed down. But installing new smart grid technology in 500 homes not only gave his team new work, but new customers.

September 20, 2011
Developing a smarter electrical system also involves investment in training programs to build the workforce we need to successfully design, implement and sell these technologies. The Energy Department funds Smart Grid Workforce Training programs across the country, as pictured above. <a href="http://energy.gov/articles/power-jobs-smart-grid-workforce">Find out more about the exciting career opportunities smart grid technology is enabling</a>.
Power Jobs: The Smart Grid Workforce

“Really anyone who likes science or math, we’ve probably got a job for you,” said Justin Johnson, Senior Director of Engineering at Oncor, one of the country’s largest transmission and distribution utilities based in Dallas, Texas. Find out more about the exciting career opportunities smart grid technology is offering.

September 9, 2011
Navy Veteran Gary Watts is a recent graduate of Power4Vets, a project funded through the Office of Electricity and Energy Reliability's Smart Grid Workforce Development Program to put veterans back to work in civilian energy jobs. | Photo courtesy of Power4Vets
Navy Veteran Back to Work on the Smart Grid

Read about Power4Vets -- a program funded by Recovery Act money through the Energy Department’s Smart Grid Workforce Training program, which is helping to prepare the next generation of workers in the utility and electric industries for smart grid-related jobs.

August 9, 2011
Deputy Secretary Daniel Poneman sees firsthand how new in-home monitors help consumers save money. <a href = "http://energy.gov/photos/how-smart-grid-helps-homeowners-reduce-their-energy-use">Click here to see more photos</a> and learn how new smart grid technology can help you save. | Energy Department Image | Photo by Jen Stutsman
How the Smart Grid Helps Homeowners Reduce Their Energy Use

More than 70 percent of participants in CenterPoint Energy's pilot program said they reduced their energy use as a result of real-time information from in-home monitors. Deputy Secretary Daniel Poneman saw firsthand how the technology is helping consumers save money. Check out photos and video.

July 26, 2011
Small business owner Steve Kaplan told ABC News’ “Show Me the Money” on Good Morning America that he's saving over $320 per month compared to last summer, which they calculated could result in $1,300 a year.
Smart Meters Helping Oklahoma Consumers Save Hundreds During Summer Heat

Smart meters -- just one of the advanced technologies being used to modernize the grid -- are helping Oklahoma businesses and home owners beat high electricity bills not only during these summer months, but year-round.

June 13, 2011
A 21st Century Grid includes increasing the overall efficiency of our generating, transmission and distribution system to facilitate the growth of renewable energy sources. | Energy Department Image
Five Million Smart Meters Installed Nationwide is Just the Beginning of Smart Grid Progress

If Edison were transported in a time, he would be amazed by progress in lighting and sound recording, such as the LED light or the iPod. On the other hand, he would easily recognize much of the basic technology behind today’s power system.

March 14, 2011
Vids4Grids: Smart Meters and Super Cables

Find out more about the power engineers behind the exciting new technologies that are essential to constructing a national Smart Grid.