Software has been developed to allow electricity that has been generated at renewable energy facilities to be marketed and resold at multiple locations.
PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania – Generation from solar photovoltaic (PV) panels, wind turbines and small hydroelectric dams is becoming increasingly connected to the electric grid, notes Solar Light of Philadelphia. This grid connection gives the electric power consumer additional sources to purchase clean generated electricity. As electricity is sold over an internet connection, renewable energy facilities require power generation information that has the same speed, reliability and confirmation required by the electric utility generation industry’s Independent System Operators. “Unlike traditional utility generation, renewable electric generation is produced in multiple locations with electric generation fluctuating due to natural seasonal variations of sun, wind variation and water flow,” explains company documents. “These variations can be documented, with real time access to generation and recent generation data presented to the wholesale electric market in the Time-of-Use formats required by an ISO.” Traditionally, the wholesale generation market has considered renewable energy generation to be a small market and unreliable source of generation. By creating a data link between renewable generators and wholesale buyers, the issue of generation reliability and availability is documented. Intenet Data Link (IDL) software allows automated data management of electric generation data to be stored real time on the internet. Web pages can transmitted at user selected intervals as frequently as once every two minutes, to single or multiple web sites, providing a method to bring renewable electric generation into the fast moving wholesale electric generation market. IDL is a Windows-based program that collects and transfers data to a website automatically. It offers an automated method for obtaining data from remote locations and presenting it in a variety of selectable formats, including pressure, temperature, flow, kilowatts, kWh, wind speed, RPM and others. The software includes a checklist to ensure the information is transferred, and saves the configuration and converts the collected data into bitmap, JPEG, GIF or text file for transmission via FTP to a website. Depending on user options, the data refresh rate ranges from every five minutes to once per week. The software is available for a two month trial period. It sells for US$250.