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Ballard and Amplats launch fuel cell-powered microgrid

Wed, 08/06/2014 - 15:50 -- Laura Varriale
Ballard and Amplat's off-grid solution

Ballard Power Systems and Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) are to test a fuel cell-powered microgrid prototype in a remote rural community in South Africa.

The companies will power 34 households in a 12-month trial with a generator system that is fueled by methanol and uses platinum group metals as catalysts. The fuel cell system is integrated into a prototype off-grid solution incorporating a battery bank and inverters that operate within the microgrid.

The system is designed to provide a total of 15kW of power and generate peak power of 70kW.

"This field trial will provide valuable insight into the market requirements of off-grid communities,” said Andrew Hinkly, executive head of marketing at Amplats. South Africa’s Department of Energy (DOE) has chosen the rural community of Naledi Trust as a suitable site for the trial as the area does not have any access to grid power and expanding the national network would be too expensive.

The next phase of the project will be the installment of 200 to 300 units in remote villages across the country, according to Godfrey Oliphant, South Africa’s Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources.

Ballard and Amplats are collaborating with power utility company Eskom and South Africa’s DOE to conduct the field test.

Power Electrics expands in Southampton

Fri, 08/01/2014 - 11:52 -- Laura Varriale
Power Electrics

Diesel generator supplier Power Electrics has opened a genset depot in Southampton, UK.

The 20,000 sq. ft. depot contains generators ranging from 20kVA to 2200kVA. Power Electrics has a fleet of 1,000 gensets.

According to Bristol-headquartered Power Electrics, the close location to the motorway of the facility will benefit customers in emergency situations and help the company to dispatch rental generators faster.

Andy Pullin, director of Power Electrics said: “This latest expansion means we can better serve our customers and really secure our future in the south.” The company will power several events in Southern England this summer including Royal Ascot in London and the Goodwill Festival of Speed.

The supplier provides its service to data centres, telecommunications, construction, utilities and events.

Power Electrics is a sponsor of the Bloodhound SSC project and supports the project with diesel gensets. The Bloodhound research team aims to develop a car that is able to break the 1,000mph barrier and set a land speed record.

Generac reveals noise reduced and low cost per kW standby generator

Thu, 07/10/2014 - 17:24 -- Laura Varriale
Generac genset

Generac has launched a low cost per kW protection standby 22kW generator.

The Guardian genset series comes with the company’s purpose-built OHVI engine and controller, including a dual-line tri-lingual LCD display.

The genset is engineered for standby power applications and includes a feature to ensure reliable operation to power sensitive electronics and appliances, according to the company. The engine runs at 1800rpm, which makes it quieter, less fuel consuming and extends therefore the service life of engine and alternator.

“Previously, if a homeowner needed a generator with a little more ‘oomph’ than they could get from a 20kW home standby, they’d have to invest several thousand dollars more for a 22kW liquid-cooled generator,” said Jake Thomas, senior product manager at Generac. The 22kW air-cooled home standby should set a new price and performance benchmark claimed the company. The recommended retail price of the new series is $4,699. “Our new 22kW Guardian Series generator provides that extra power for only a few hundred dollars more. That’s a tremendous value for our customers,” added Thomas.

The genset is compatible with a remote monitoring system that allows US and Canadian homeowners to monitor the status of their power system via electronical devices.

Chicago Pneumatic adds stationary gensets to range

Thu, 07/10/2014 - 17:17 -- Laura Varriale
Chicago Pneumatic genset

Chicago Pneumatic has launched 50Hz and 60Hz stationary generator sets for the construction industry.

The units are designed to be capable of operating at high working temperatures. The gensets are based on a frame-and-canopy design, making them suitable for stationary applications in the worldwide construction industry, according to the company. The units should be suitable for on-site and off-site positioning. The canopy shall give long-lasting durability while a rugged base should add impact resistance and extra protection.

The 50Hz unit is available from 10kVA to 250kVA and the 60Hz from 17kVA to 255kVA.

“Our new CPSG units are built to withstand the toughest worksite conditions, making them ideal for operators seeking a consistent source of primary power while working day in and day out in a wide variety of construction applications,” claimed Daniel Escuer, product marketing manager for power at Chicago Pneumatic.

The gensets also features a control panel that facilitates remote operation, different levels of noise isolation and a robust terminal board that can be connected with or without clamps. 45° doors provide accessibility for maintenance, Chicago Pneumatic stated.

Crestchic delivers loadbank for BAS in Antarctica

Wed, 07/09/2014 - 11:31 -- Laura Varriale
Crestchic loadbank

British Antarctic Survey (BAS) has installed a second loadbank from UK-based manufacturer Crestchic to secure critical data and the livelihood of scientists at two primary research stations in Antarctica.

The resistive-only loadbank provides 200kW to ensure that generators do not lose power in the acute period of the Antarctic summer and winter peak season and to protect received data.

During the summer, temperatures remain close to freezing and in the winter, temperatures drop as low as -30°C at the remote BAS research centres.

Because of the lack of an electrical grid, the data backup and safety of the scientists depends on the power of the generators at the primary stations Halley and Rothera. The second loadbank was installed at the Rothera station, after the first loadbank was delivered to Halley.

“You can’t survive here without resilient generators and we can’t afford to lose the power so the loadbanks are critical for our operation out in Antarctica,” said Mark Wales, facilities manager at BAS.

Halley, where the ozone hole was discovered in 1985, lies within an auroral zone on the Brunt Ice Shelf and is suited for “space weather” research. At Rothera, located on Adelaide Island, the BAS researches glaciology, geology, geophysics and biology.

Onis Visa launches “Big Fox” genset

Tue, 06/24/2014 - 16:56 -- Laura Varriale
Onis Visa genset

Italy's Onis Visa has added a new generator set to its FOX genset series.

The “Big Fox” is equipped with engines from German company Deutz and coupled with Stamford alternators. The engine-alternator is available with four different range power options from 20kVA to 60kVA.

The new genset is designed to have a high-level noise reduction. It is suitable for continuous and emergency service or civil and industrial use as well as for mobile and stationary applications. The canopy is easily accessible for cleaning and maintenance due to removable panels, claimed the supplier. The fuel tank has a capacity of 90 litres corresponding to 8.5 working hours at 75% PRP.

A 40 inches high cube container comprises up to 24 stacked units. The genset provides a guard evolution manual control panel and an easily removable starting battery, according to Onis Visa.

The generator sets are fully manufactured at the company’s headquarters near Venice, Italy.

Doosan launches Tier IV Final Generator

Tue, 06/10/2014 - 17:03 -- Laura Varriale
G240WCU Tier IV Final generator

Doosan Portable Power has launched its first Tier IV Final generator, which includes a control panel with a DynaGen TG-410 integrated controller.

The G240WCU model comprises a dual-frequency switch that allows users to select from 50 to 60 Hertz and an operation protection scheme to prevent users from inadvertently switching voltage during operation.

The generator is powered by a Cummins QSB7-G6 Tier IV Final 282hp engine with a fuel tank capacity of 368 gal for 26h runtime at 100% load.

Tier IV emission standards were adopted in 2004 for new off-road diesel engines by the US Environmental Protection Agency in order to reduce hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, particulate matter and nitrogen oxide.

The model is part of the Doosan mobile generator line. Options such as positive air shutoff, preheat engine systems and oil level maintainer will also be available.

Kohler expands generator manufacturing plant

Mon, 06/09/2014 - 11:15 -- Laura Varriale
Ribbon cutting ceremony at Kohler

Kohler Power Systems has expanded its generator manufacturing plant with a 105,000 sq. ft. addition at its facility in Mosel, Wisconsin, US.

The added space, which brings total facility size to half a million square feet, is aimed to increase production capacity with 140 tons of crane capacity to allow easier loading of large generators after production for transport and to storage more components. 

“We are driving our growth through a focus on quality and service,” said David Kohler, president and chief operating officer of Kohler.

Additional staff will be hired at the Mosel plant and the generator manufacturing plant in Saukville, Wisconsin, which will reconfigure its production lines and focus solely on producing Kohler’s 8- to 20-kW home standby generators in the future. The residential power market has increased in recent years as the frequency of power outages has risen due to severe weather and an aging power grid.


Bredenoord expands mobile hybrid generator production

Thu, 04/17/2014 - 09:57 -- Tildy Bayar
Bredenoord expands mobile hybrid generator production

Netherlands-based rental power firm Bredenoord says it will produce an extra 30 of its ESaver mobile hybrid generator systems and put them on the market through its rental programme.

The move comes after a successful test run of the systems in partnership with contractor Dura Vermeer, which piloted 10 of the ESavers.

The 15kVA, 3ph, 400V Esaver system comprises a battery pack that recharges via solar cells, in conjunction with a diesel generator. At peak power demand times or when the battery charge is low, the generator engine switches to full capacity. The system can be combined with power generators with varying capacities, Bredenoord said.

In late 2013 Bredenoord and Dura Vermeer completed a pilot project that used 10 400V ESaver systems in combination with a 15kVA generator for construction and infrastructure projects. The companies reported that initial estimates of 40% fuel savings had been exceeded and that 70% savings are possible under certain conditions.

"The online ESaverclient portal provides clients with continuous site monitoring of their fuel savings and emission reductions”, said Margien Storm van Leeuwen, new business and marketing manager at Bredenoord. “We analyse this data and thus, together with the client, we can ensure the best possible use in each specific situation. [This] results in considerable savings, and has been an important motivation in further expanding production”.

Bredenoord general manager Jaap Fluit said, “We are heading for a society in which we will be more careful in our use of natural resource and emission. In practice the ESaver proves perfectly well that trustworthiness, certainty and sustainability can be combined with optimal cost-effectiveness. In particular by making existing technologies more sustainable we create a win-win situation. Fuel-savings by means of using our current machinery."



Cummins PowerConnect offers quiet standby power

Fri, 02/21/2014 - 14:48 -- Ruth Williams

Cummins has brought out the PowerConnect standby generator range to offer quiet backup power for light commercial or large residential users.

The generators are available in power ratings from 30kW up to 60kW with low sound output so they can be used in residential neighbourhoods without causing a disturbance.

The PowerConnect joins the QuietConnect in the Connect range, which Cummins brought out for smaller-scale power users who want the peace of mind of having a backup power supply as power cuts become more commonplace in all countries.

At the core of the PowerConnect is a four-cycle, spark-ignited Cummins QSJ2.4 engine that features a closed-loop electronic fuel system for improved performance and reliability.

Both liquid propane and natural gas can be used in the generator without having to make mechanical changes.


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