Electricity – What’s Next?

Featuring: Dr. Jay Apt, Carnegie Mellon University, Director of the Electricity Industry Center Tepper School of Business, Dept. of Engineering and Public Policy

Electricity – What’s Next?

Friday, March 01, 2013
4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
CNSI Auditorium
UCLA Campus

About the talk

Renewables? Natural gas? Energy storage? At Carnegie Mellon’s Electricity Industry Center, we have been studying the characteristics of all these technologies to see how they might change the current electric grid. The discussion about renewable electricity has recently benefited from a scarce commodity: data. We now understand the character of fluctuations in power output from wind and solar power. Using the measured variations and moderate time resolution emissions data from natural gas generators, we can estimate additional air emissions from these generators caused by wind and solar. We know when connecting wind farms together with transmission lines to reduce variability reaches a point of diminishing returns, and are starting to learn how to best use new-technology batteries in the grid.

Following the Seminar: Posters and Networking Reception with Hors d’oeuvres

About the speaker

Jay Apt is a Professor at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business and the Department of Engineering and Public Policy. He is the Director of the Carnegie Mellon Electricity Industry Center.

He received an A.B .in physics from Harvard College in 1971 and a Ph.D. in experimental atomic physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1976.

His research and teaching interests are in economics, engineering, and public policy aspects of the electricity industry, economics of technical innovation, management of technical enterprises, risk management in policy and technical decision framing, and engineering systems design.

Selected recent publication include, "Quantifying the Hurricane Risk to Offshore Wind Turbines", "The Costs of Wind and Solar Power Variability for Reducing CO2 Emissions", "The Variability of Interconnected Wind Plants", "The Economics of Using PHEV Battery Packs for Grid Storage", "The Character of Power Output from Utility-Scale Photovoltaic Systems", "Air Emissions Due To Wind And Solar Power", "The Geoengineering Option:  A Last Resort Against Global Warming? ", "Promoting Low-Carbon Electricity Production", "Storing Syngas Lowers the Carbon Price for Profitable Coal Gasification", "The Spectrum of Power from Wind Turbines", "The Character of Power Output from Utility-Scale PV Systems", "Should a Coal-Fired Power Plant be Retrofitted or Replaced?", "Economics of Electric Energy Storage for Energy Arbitrage and Regulation in New York", "Power and People", "Deregulation Has Not Lowered US Industrial Electricity Prices", and "Electrical Blackouts: A Systemic Problem."

He has written op-ed pieces for the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and the Washington Post. A former NASA Astronaut, he flew four missions aboard the U.S. Space Shuttles Atlantis and Endeavour. He received the NASA Distinguished Service Medal in 1997 and the Metcalf Lifetime Achievement Award for significant contributions to engineering in 2002. His paper with PhD student Adam Newcomer, "Near term implications of a ban on new coal-fired power plants in the US" was cited as one of the top environmental policy papers of 2009 by the American Chemical Society.

Sponsor(s): Leaders in Sustainability