The Grid Friendly Appliance Controller chip can temporarily shift how smart appliances use power to soften the blow for utilities during times of peak demand on the grid. Battelle has licensed the GFAC to company Encryptor of Plano, TX.
has granted a non-exclusive license for a technology that will help
soften the blow for utilities during times of peak demand on the grid by
temporarily shifting when smart appliances use power.
technology firm Encryptor of Plano, TX, plans to incorporate Grid
Friendly Appliance Controller technology, developed at the Department of
Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, into a new, low-cost
electronic chip that can be easily built into appliances. Battelle
operates PNNL for DOE.
of our missions as a national laboratory, in addition to conducting
primary research, is to develop game changing technology and then
transfer it to a useful purpose,” said Cheryl Cejka, PNNL’s director of
technology has tremendous potential as a low-cost way of reducing
stress on our nation’s electricity system by making our everyday
appliances better users of energy. We are very pleased that Encryptor’s
work will take it one step closer to market.”
plans to develop the technology within the next two to three years and
then market it to appliance manufacturers as a highly capable, low-cost
invented the controller with funding from DOE and Battelle patented it
in 2008. The device senses conditions on the grid by monitoring the
frequency and voltage of the system and provides automatic responses in
times of power disruption or grid emergency.
the North American power grid, a disturbance of the nominal 60 Hertz
frequency is an indicator of serious imbalance between supply and demand
that, if unarrested, could lead to a blackout. This simple computer
chip can be installed in household appliances and turn them off for a
few minutes, or even a few seconds, to allow the grid to stabilize.
controllers can be programmed to autonomously react in fractions of a
second when a disturbance is detected, whereas power plants take minutes
to respond. They can even be programmed to delay restart to prevent all
of them coming on at once after a power outage.
For more information about the controller, visit PNNL’s Available Technologies website.