Letting more sunlight into the grid
“I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy.
What a source of power! I hope we don’t have
to wait ‘til oil and coal run out before we
Tomorrow is Thomas Edison’s birthday, and I can’t think of a better way to pay tribute then to celebrate the new Center of Excellence (CoE) in Power Conversion technologies GE just opened at our research facility in Germany. A tribute because Edison was a big believer in the future of renewable power, and this new CoE will create the next generation of technologies needed to help realize their full potential.
It’s no secret that renewable power sources like wind and solar are becoming more prevalent on the grid today. In fact, it’s no longer a question of if, but how much we can take on. I’ll save that question for another day, but what is clear is that the grid will have to improve as higher amounts of wind and solar are brought on line
That’s where our new Center of Excellence in Power Conversion comes into play. To take on more solar and wind, more power electronics and controls technologies will be needed to ensure that we can reliably integrate them into the grid. Because solar and wind generate power differently from conventional power generators like a gas turbine, you need a seamless conversion process to modify them into usable electricity for the grid. GE Energy is hiring 20 new design engineers as an extension to the Controls & power CoE in Salem, Virginia. This new team will work in conjunction with my team, the High Power Electronics Lab, which is part of GE Global Research Power Conversion Systems, to develop and bring needed power conversion technologies to market faster. We’re looking for highly qualified engineers. If interested, you can learn more by visiting GE’s careers site.
How right Edison was about the future of solar energy. My job is to help make sure we have a grid that is capable enough to handle the higher levels forecast in the future.