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Hybrid wind-solar project in Minnesota may be perfect option for co-ops, municipalities

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Energy News Network:A trailblazing wind-solar hybrid project in western Minnesota could be a preview of what’s to come as renewable developers look for new ways to bolster projects.The project, developed and owned by Juhl Energy, is among the first of its kind in the country to pair wind and solar on the same site. A 2-megawatt turbine and 500-kilowatt solar installation share an inverter and grid connection, reducing equipment costs compared to two separate projects.The pairing is expected to start producing power this month. Lake Region Electric Cooperative in Pelican Rapids, about 30 miles north of Fergus Falls, will buy the power for its approximately 27,000 members.Juhl managing director Clay D. Norrbom said the plug-and-play nature of the system has attracted at least five other customers, including an industrial company in Iowa. Other customer prospects include cooperatives and municipally owned power providers in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa. He predicts Juhl will build at least three this year.“It opens another market that quite frankly five, 10 or 15 years ago was not there,” Norrbom said. “You couldn’t supply to a municipal co-op. The scale and efficiency weren’t good enough to do that. Now you can go and supply at that distribution voltage something that’s price competitive to the end customers.”The hybrid offers an opportunity to increase capacity. Wind turbines operate at a 50 to 55 percent capacity, Norrbom said, while solar in the Midwest sits at 15 percent. By combining power from both sources, the hybrid reaches a capacity factor of 65 to 70 percent, Norrbom said, at a cost substantially less than what Lake Region pays for electricity from its transmission and generation provider Great River Energy. Juhl decided against adding storage due to cost and regulatory issues, both challenges he predicts will dissipate in the future.More: Wind-solar pairing cuts equipment costs while ramping up output Hybrid wind-solar project in Minnesota may be perfect option for co-ops, municipalitieslast_img read more

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Bailey: Improving Allen deserves chance to solidify starting job

first_img Published on September 12, 2013 at 2:11 am Editor’s note: Two beat writers were assigned a quarterback to make the case for as Syracuse’s starter — one for Drew Allen and one for Terrel Hunt.In 148 seconds, the Syracuse offense showed its true potential. Nine plays, 75 yards for a touchdown.Drew Allen led the Orange out of the locker room and went 5-for-6 on the drive, connecting with Ashton Broyld, Jarrod West and Kendall Moore. He hit Moore on a 16-yard scoring strike down the seam to finish the drive.The only problem? This was the start of the second half. SU was already down 34-7 and returning to the field with instructions from head coach Scott Shafer to just “win the second half.”The Orange put up 14 points and 193 yards with Allen under center in the second half as the offense found its rhythm. Quick perimeter passes coupled with outside-the-tackles running put the Northwestern defense on its heels.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAnd Allen, at times, looked very comfortable running the hurry-up offense.“All good athletes kind of get into a zone and there were times Saturday where he was in a zone,” SU head coach Scott Shafer said.Allen showed distinct improvement in his second contest despite throwing four interceptions, enough so that he deserves a chance to continue as the starter — at least for now. Admittedly his tendency to stare down receivers has resulted in six interceptions through two games and many more batted passes. But those flashes of dominance shown against Northwestern merit another opportunity against Wagner.A poor performance from the Oklahoma transfer could land the four-year backup back on the bench for good. But Allen’s ability to throw the deep ball and proven composure and leadership are worth the continued patience.“He’s our quarterback,” Broyld said. “We’re going to stick with him `til we can’t ride with him no more.”The chance to start against Football Championship Subdivision foe Wagner gives Allen every chance to strengthen his hold on the starting job as Terrel Hunt gets some reps off the bench. Frankly, if he can’t score at will against a Seahawks defense that gave up 42 points to Division II Merrimack, he shouldn’t be starting.But the high points of the Northwestern game provide hope for Allen’s success. He’s developed a core of short-yardage receivers in Broyld, who leads the team with 11 catches for 108 yards, senior Christopher Clark and freshman Brisly Estime.And Broyld was emphatic that the offense is better with Allen than with Hunt.“He’s our quarterback,” Broyld said, “so, of course.”The pieces are in place for an SU offense that has the potential to be dynamic. Those glimpses just need to become more consistent.“When we’re hitting on all cylinders, I feel that we can score at will,” Allen said.Allen said he watched more film from Sunday to Tuesday than he spent preparing for Penn State and Northwestern on those days each of the past two weeks.And he knows forcing passes like he did each of the last two weeks will only pull him off the field faster.His second-quarter interception thrown to Broyld in double coverage against Northwestern was never going to result in a catch.Allen stared down the sophomore Broyld in the slot before the snap and followed him 15 yards down the left sideline where Wildcats safety Traveon Henry rotated over to pick off the overthrow.“You’ve got to eat it,” Lester said.But Allen and the staff are confident those mistakes will be fixed. And with Wagner and Tulane to build up confidence against, they should.For those imploring their friends and family that Hunt is ready to play the role of savior, hold your horses. His 15-yard scoring scamper was exciting, but remember it came against second-teamers.And it was the result of a mistake by Hunt.“He made some mistakes that got under my skin,” Lester said. “The touchdown was a missed read. He ran the sideline and everyone was cheering and I grabbed him right out of the pile and said, ‘What are you doing?’”Once Hunt starts a game there’s no going back, barring injury. You can’t bench a senior for a redshirt sophomore then switch back.So for the immediate future it’s shine or sit for Drew Allen. He deserves this last chance and has every opportunity to make the most of it.Stephen Bailey is an assistant sports editor at The Daily Orange where his column appears occasionally. He can be reached at sebail01@syr.edu or on Twitter at @Stephen_Bailey1. Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

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