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EGEB: Wind turbines hackable, Michigan says solar doesn’t cost grid, long live Perovskite, more

Electrek Green Energy Brief: A daily technical, financial and political review/analysis of important green energy news.

Researchers found they could hack entire wind farms – Staggs typed into his laptop’s command line and soon saw a list of IP addresses representing every networked turbine in the field. A few minutes later he typed another command, and the hackers watched as the single turbine above them emitted a muted screech like the brakes of an aging 18-wheel truck, slowed, and came to a stop – We know that the times we live in times when hacking power plants is real. We know that hackers have learned how to create ‘botnets’ that can infect millions of machines at once, and then those machines can all turn on at once to begin their pre-determined illicit activities. If we’re going to distribute energy management computers that are connected to the internet – every individual solar panel will have a computer internal soon – we’re going to have to step up our security game.

Heliatek’s organic thin-film technology used on Engie’s research center – This system is the header image. I’m showing it for two reasons – 1. Its built into the facade of the building. Nice. 2. Organic PV – organic cells are much cheaper to build, and the long term environmental impacts are much lower. Good to see the product in real life.

After Surges In West Texas, ERCOT Pushes A Plan To Expand Transmission Lines“Oil. You got it. Companies are still pumping a lot of oil out in West Texas. That takes a lot of electricity, but it’s not just oil activity, using electricity in West Texas. ERCOT is also seeing more electricity generated out west.” Here is Leslie Sopko, an ERCOT spokesperson. “You know more than 1,600 megawatts of solar resources are expected to come online in Pecos and Southwest Upton counties between 2016 and 2020. So, a lot of solar growth opportunity in that area.”  – Dammit, why is it that Texas is the only place smart enough to build transmission lines? California? Massachusetts? Where are you? Thank you Texas for leading this nation. Second point – there’s a lot of wind out there also.

Evidence piles up: Michigan says solar users benefit state’s grid – The study, titled Solar Energy in Michigan: The Economic Impact of Distributed Generation (DG) on Non-Solar Customers, found solar users are – say it with us now – supporting the grid and therefore should not be subject to extra charges by utilities because they’ve installed solar on their rooftops. I know you, the readers of this column have heard this story before. I do apologize for telling it to you again…but we know the reality of our political situation – so here’s yet another example to join a plethora of prior research.

Ultra-stable perovskite solar cell remains stable for more than a year – Scientists have built a low-cost and ultra-stable perovskite solar cell that has been running at 11.2 percent efficiency for over a year, without loss in performance. Yeah, I know, its the wonder material that hasn’t yet come to the world in real form, but gosh is the progression of research compelling. Check out image below to get a feel for what they’re working with.

Future Energy: China leads world in solar power production – An interesting article about the dynamics of China and solar power. Including this doozy – “Depending on who you talk to in the provinces that have by far the largest amount of solar production, curtailment rates are 30% and in some cases significantly higher than 30% – that’s extraordinary and that’s a real problem,” explains Ball.

Reconciling predictions of climate change – “The historical pattern of warming is that most of the warming has occurred over land, in particular over the northern hemisphere,” said Cristian Proistosescu, PhD ’17, and first author of the paper. “This pattern of warming is known as the fast mode — you put CO2 in the atmosphere and very quickly after that, the land in the northern hemisphere is going to warm.” But there is also a slow mode of warming, which can take centuries to realize. That warming, which is most associated with the Southern Ocean and the Eastern Equatorial Pacific, comes with positive feedback loops that amplify the process. – I think it is important you have in your head a better understanding of how global warming is progressing. I know people expect temperatures to rise evenly, cleanly, the same every where – but that’s not how large global systems run. And this sentence should hurt you heart – When these patterns are taken into account, the researchers found that not only do temperatures fall within the canonical range of 1.5 to 4.5 degrees Celsius but that even higher ranges, perhaps up to 6 degrees, may also be possible. – Bang on the door of your politicians and their simplistic Kock Brother funded mentalities.

Imagine being a scientist and knowing your work will be manipulated in a way that increases the chance pesticides will hurt children. That’s what the EPA scientists are struggling with with the current regime.

Second tweet of the day because holy heck those are low numbers – $0.02-0.04/kWh for wind/solar and $0.01/kWh for energy storage!

Header image is from the second article in today’s brief.

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