1. Articles from Desert Sun


  2. 1-6 of 6
    1. Tesla Built the World's Biggest Battery. This One Could be Three Times Bigger

      Tesla Built the World's Biggest Battery. This One Could be Three Times Bigger

      An energy company wants to build another huge solar farm in the open desert east of Palm Springs — and maybe the world's biggest battery. The Crimson solar project would span 2,500 acres of public lands south of Interstate 10 in eastern Riverside County, at the base of the Mule Mountains. The San Francisco-based developer, Recurrent Energy, has asked the federal government for permission to build 350 megawatts of solar power at the site, and up to 350 megawatts of battery storage. That would be several times larger than the biggest battery currently in existence, a 100-megawatt system that Elon Musk's Tesla Inc. installed in Australia last year.

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    2. Our Voice: We're Charged Up About IID's $68M Battery

      Our Voice: We're Charged Up About IID's $68M Battery

      Imperial Irrigation District’s massive investment in the local energy grid in the form of a $68 million “battery” is a good sign for renewables. Officials say the project will help bring about production of 50 megawatts of energy from two solar projects — the 30-megawatt Midway III project in Calipatria and the 20-megawatt SunPeak 2 project near Niland. “The battery is a really big deal,” Bruce Townsend, the district’s superintendent for alternative energy, told The Desert Sun’s Sammy Roth. “If we didn’t have the battery ... we would need to procure another gas unit, and get it permitted, and burn fossil fuels.”

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    3. Imperial Irrigation District Planning $68M Battery

      Imperial Irrigation District Planning $68M Battery

      After a blackout left millions without power three years ago, the Imperial Irrigation District agreed to spend at least $9 million to improve the local energy grid. The bulk of that money, regulators said, would go toward an energy storage system — basically, a really big battery. It turns out the price tag will be a lot higher. The Imperial Irrigation District estimates it will spend about $68 million on a 20-megawatt battery, which should come online by the end of 2016.

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    4. Coachella Valley at Forefront of Energy Storage

      Coachella Valley at Forefront of Energy Storage

      Long seen as the "next big thing" in renewable energy, affordable battery storage is on the verge of becoming a reality — and several businesses and research groups with a footprint in the Coachella Valley are helping lead the charge. Energy storage, experts say, could revolutionize the way we power our homes and pay for electricity, allowing us to recharge electric vehicles overnight, keep the lights on during blackouts and avoid pulling energy from the grid during periods of high demand. Paired with solar panels, energy storage could enable us to power our homes with renewable energy even when the sun isn't shining — potentially making traditional electricity grids obsolete.

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    5. Imperial Irrigation District to Pay $12M Fine, Invest in Energy Storage

      Imperial Irrigation District to Pay $12M Fine, Invest in Energy Storage

      Three years after a power outage left millions of residents in the Southwest without power, the Imperial Irrigation District has agreed to pay a $12 million penalty for its role in causing the blackout. The September 2011 power outage was sparked by a crew working for Arizona Public Service, which accidentally shut off a 500-kilovolt transmission line while switching out equipment near Yuma, Ariz. The diverted energy subsequently overwhelmed an Imperial Irrigation District (IID) subtransmission line, triggering a blackout that affected 2.7 million people, including many in the Coachella Valley.

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    6. Solar Industry Closes in on Efficient Storage Batteries

      Solar Industry Closes in on Efficient Storage Batteries

      Storage has long been viewed as the holy grail of solar, transforming the less predictable, intermittent power generated by panels or solar thermal installations into electricity that can be drawn on as needed, at night or in emergencies, the same as fossil fuels. But rather than some future possibility, technically and economically out of reach, solar coupled with storage batteries is now looming on the horizon, a new and exciting option in an ever-growing solar market, in the Coachella Valley and across California.

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