Arizona Corporation Commission to hold technology workshop


In the Arizona Corporation Commission’s efforts to stay at the forefront of emerging energy technologies, Commissioner Bob Burns will lead a two-day technology workshop Oct. 27 to Oct. 29 in Phoenix that will feature industry professionals.

Experts plan to cover topics, including distributed voltage optimization, renewable energy and advances in energy storage. Noting an anticipated surge in the energy storage industry, Burns said the state may need to reconsider its utility model and expect possible implementation of new advances in the field.

“I’ve been told that the trajectory of energy storage may be similar to that of solar panels,” Burns said. “That means energy storage could be viable and cost-effective sooner than we think. This could have a significant impact on our current utility model and is something we need to keep an eye on.”

APS, TEP, Solar City, Invenergy, NuScale Power and Dominion Resources will have spokespeople at the conference, with Idaho National Laboratory representatives offering information about grid modernization collaboration among other opportunities for Arizona.

Nationwide, 17 labs research nuclear energy uses, fuel and environmental projects and safety programs for the Department of Homeland Security.

“There are millions of dollars in grant money available…to offset costs of the infrastructure improvements needed to modernize our electric grid,” Burns said. “Being able to create a lab satellite here could create jobs and boost the state’s reputation as a technology rich environment for future business.”

The workshops will begin at 9 a.m. Oct. 27, the Idaho National Laboratory presentation will begin at 9 a.m. Oct. 29 and the technology workshops will continue on the 29th at 1 p.m. All events are scheduled at the Arizona Corporation Commission at 1200 W. Washington in Phoenix.

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