The Florida State University

IESES Newsletter

Local Edition - September 2010 
Image of Melanie Simmons
City Wastewater Treatment Facility Hosts Algae Biofuel Research
Dr. Joel Kostka, Director of the Center for a Systems Approach to Bioenergy Research (SABER) has made significant advances in biofuel research since the City of Tallahassee provided space for the algae ponds at the Storm Water Treatment Facility on Tram Road. 
Claire Smith and Zoe Bider, graduate students in SABER

Graduate students, Claire Smith, Zoe Bider and Kristina Welch (not pictured) are working to develop a clean and renewable biofuel that has 10 times the energy yield of land crops. 
Raceway algae ponds under construction

Jon Delgardio, SABER Lab Manager, says the goal of the research is to determine specific conditions that maximize the efficiency of algal growth and production of lipids, which can be harvested as biofuel. The project uses reclaimed storm water to provide nutrients that are necessary for algal growth while the algae cleans the wastewater.

Jon Delgardio, SABER Lab Manager.
For more information about the algae ponds or for a tour, contact Jon Delgardio at

City of Tallahassee and FSU Partner on Smart Grid Opportunities
city logoSmart Grid Systems allow two way communication through digital technology between energy suppliers and consumers, so that energy consumption can be regulated and alternative energy sources can be integrated. The City has already made a substantial investment in smart grid basic infrastructure by fully implementing smart meters throughout the city. 

mayor"We started the investment in smart grid technology before it took off as a smart concept nationally," Tallahassee Mayor John Marks said last fall. "That's important for our customers, as the bottom line is that they will be able to save energy, save water and save money."

The City of Tallahassee and Florida State University have joined together to pursue funding for Smart Grid development and demonstration projects from the Federal Department of Energy. 

fsu logo"The types of activities FSU and the City propose are to create a next generation meter, develop protocols for residential solar or other renewable power to access the grid and make the grid and the communications associated with it more secure," says Bob Arnold, Managing Engineer, Power Engineering Division, in the City's Electric Utility.  Mr. Arnold is one of the principal investigators in the Smart Grid grant.

Kim Williams, Chairman of the Economic Development Council of Tallahassee/Leon County
Kim Williams
One hope is that by working together, FSU and the City Utilities will advance knowledge that leads to innovations with commercial appeal.  Kim Williams, Chairman of the Economic Development Council of Tallahassee/Leon County, applauds the cooperation and anticipates potential business start-ups based on discoveries in smart grid technology.
The City's Director of Energy Services Mentors Entrepreneurs on the Marketability of Green Technology
David Byrne,
The City's Director of Energy Services.
David Byrne
In April, the Jim Moran Institute (JMI) partnered with FSU's IESES to develop a business plan for a product to be brought to market. The product is Distributed Intelligent Agency Based Control Solutions (D.I.A.C.) for Smart Power Grids.  The Jim Moran Institute held a competition among several teams of students to create commercialization plans for the product.

David Byrne is the Director of Energy Services at the City of Tallahassee Energy Utilities.  Mr. Byrne is an energy engineer with a masters degree in business administration. He met with and mentored the student teams to help them understand how utilities might need and use the DIAC Solutions for Smart Power Grids in the future.  IESES would like to recognize and thank Mr. Byrne for his efforts. 

JMI students
The winning team, called "DIAC Solutions" from left to right, Cameron Bullock, Joel "Trey" Ware and Sam Nebel.
Next Week: Florida Energy Systems Consortium Summit
The Florida Energy Systems Consortium (FESC) invites you to the 2010 FESC Summit, which will be held September 28-29, 2010, at the University of Central Florida's Student Union in Orlando, Florida. Image of FESC logo

The FESC Summit showcases pioneering research, education and outreach programs that focus on Florida's sustainable energy future. The program features internationally renowned speakers, workshops, presentations and posters highlighting FESC universities including FSU's innovative work leading to alternative energy strategies, improved energy efficiencies, and expanded economic development for Florida.  Many IESES partners from FSU will be participating, including Helen Li, Simon Foo, and Ming Ye, among others.

Upcoming Conference--The Road Ahead for Next-Generation Integrated Power Systems: Energy and Micro-Grid Systems

caps2This October marks the 10th year since the  Center for Advanced Power Systems (CAPS) at Florida State University came into existence. The Center was formed in 2000 with a grant from the Office of Naval Research, and has subsequently grown into a nationally and internationally recognized research facility that leads the Electric Ship Research and Development Consortium.
To commemorate this important milestone, CAPS is hosting a conference entitled, "The Road Ahead for Next-Generation Integrated Power Systems:  Energy and Micro-Grid Systems" on October 14 and 15 in Tallahassee, Florida.  This workshop, which is organized by the American Society of Naval Engineers, will bring together senior representatives from government, industry, and academia to explore new technologies in power and energy that can be applied to both military and civilian systems.

keynote keynote

David H. Lewis, Vice Commander for Naval Sea Systems, left and Nevin P. Carr, Jr. of the U.S. Navy, right, are the invited keynote speakers.

As part of the workshop there will be a reception and dinner on the evening of Thursday, October 14 at the Mission San Luis in Tallahassee. Allen Boyd, a key members of congress that has supported these efforts over the years has confirmed his attendance to the dinner. Other key leaders from the power systems industries will also be in attendance.  Click on this link for bios of keynote speakers.
Steinar Dale, Director of the FSU Center for Advanced Power Systems.

For more information, and to register for the workshop, please go to: and visit their "Events" page.

hope you will be able to join us in these activities and help us mark what we feel is a momentous event for both our Center and for the power and energy systems community," said Steinar Dale.

Illuminate Tallahassee Competition will Dazzle Downtown
Illuminate Tallahassee is a competitive festival for collegiate, civic and charitable groups from Florida, Georgia and Alabama to create innovative illuminated displays. The competition centers on the Winter Holidays theme with participants judged on creating the most illumination using the least amount of power. The competition takes place November 26, 2010-"Black Friday"- in downtown Tallahassee.  Illuminate Tallahassee aims to provide the city with an opportunity to host an annual competition to develop a more efficient power source to power the illumination permanently.  Decorate with "Dazzle" one or a series of buildings in downtown Tallahassee using light. Anyone interested can visit the competition website.

IESES is a sponsor of Illuminate Tallahassee.
FSU Sustainable Energy Related Quick Links
The Student Green Energy Fund
The Sustainable Energy and Governance Center
Community Sustainable Energy Related Quick Links
The Florida Energy Systems Consortium
The Florida Energy and Climate Commission
FAMU Green Coalition
Florida Green Building Coalition
Florida's Great Northwest
Gotcha Ride
Green Drinks
Illuminate Tallahassee
Leon County Citizen Task Force on Sustainability
Leon County Economic Development Council
ReThink Energy Florida, Inc.
Sustainable Florida
Sustainable Tallahassee
Tallahassee Environmental Advisory Board
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In This Issue
City Wastewater Treatment Facility Hosts Algae Biofuel Research
City of Tallahassee and FSU Partner on Smart Grid Opportunities
The City's Director of Energy Services Mentors Entrepreneurs on the Marketability of Green Technology
Next Week: Florida Energy Systems Consortium Summit
Upcoming Conference--The Road Ahead for Next-Generation Integrated Power Systems: Energy and Micro-Grids
Illuminate Tallahassee Competition Will Dazzle Downtown
Expert on Governing Sustainable Communities Tapped for Tallahassee Environmental Advisory Board
Can Energy Efficiency Affect the Value of Your Home?
IESES Director Signs on to Make Leon County Greener
Dave Cartes, Director
Welcome to the local edition of the IESES Newsletter! This newsletter highlights the research of our colleagues and our partnerships with the community. 

The focus of this issue is our partnerships with the City of Tallahassee and Leon County.  Please let us know about any announcements or activities in the community related to energy sustainability.

Dave Cartes, PhD
Expert on Governing Sustainable Communities Tapped for Tallahassee Environmental Advisory Board
Cynthia Barber, Director of Environmental Policy and Energy Resources.

The Environmental Advisory Board is chaired by Cynthia Barber, of the City of Tallahassee's Department of Environmental Policy and Energy Resources.  The goal of the board is to develop and implement plans, policies and programs to guide city operations and Tallahassee citizens toward a sustainable future. The goals of the board include reducing demand and consumption of electricity, maximizing efficiency of use of electricity and gasoline, and maximizing renewable electric generation.

The board consists of 13 community members who provide expertise and represent stakeholder groups. Director of FSU's Sustainable Energy Governance Center, Dr. Richard Feiock, serves on the Board.  He brings to the Board his expertise of energy policy based on his research about energy sustainable communities in Florida.
Dr. Feiock also teaches a graduate class on Governing Sustainable Communities.
Dr. Richard Feiock, Director of FSU's Sustainable Energy Governance Center.
Image of Richard Feiock

Crunching Data Benefits FSU Research and the City
FSU is trying to answer the question, "are home values related to energy efficiency upgrades?"    FSU Director of the Sustainable Energy Governance Center, Dr. Richard Feiock, has been provided access to city utility information to identify if homes with substantial energy efficiency upgrades increase in value compared to less efficient homes.  Dr. Feiock has partnered with Michael Ohlsen, an energy manager with the City of Tallahassee, to collect data on energy efficiency and consumption of individual homes as part of the Demand Side Management (DSM) effort by energy services.  The goal of DSM is to reduce electric demand by offering rebates and incentives for building and appliance energy efficiency upgrades.

The city will benefit from this collaboration as well.  Dr. Feiock and his students will take a vast amount of information and aggregate it for analysis.  Once this information is coded and reduced to a manageable size for analysis, the city can use it to evaluate their Energy Smart Plus programs. "This information will give the city valuable insights into questions such as, how effective have energy audits been and where should future DSM efforts be directed," said Michael Ohlsen.

Michael Ohlsen, City of Tallahassee DSM Manager.
Mike Ohlsen
Stay tuned for an update on the impact of energy efficiency upgrades on home values. 
IESES Director Signs on to Make Leon County Greener
In February, 2010, Leon County approved the establishment of a Citizen Task Force on Sustainability to advise County Government operations toward sustainability.

Dave Cartes, IESES Director.
Image of Dave Cartes
The task force includes IESES Director, Dave Cartes, as well as representatives of the City of Tallahassee Utilities, Talquin Electric Cooperative and Sustainable Tallahassee.

Maggie Theriot, Leon County Sustainability Coordinator.
leon co
Maggie Theriot, Sustainability Coordinator of Leon County says, "The goal of the task force is to improve energy conservation, reduce waste, increase recycling, promote green building practices and products, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions."  As part of her commitment to sustainablity, Ms. Theriot held a very successful
conference on local sustainability, which took place on May 6-7, 2010.
Students, Join the Seminole Association for Sustainable Energy!

Find us on Facebook

The Student Association for Sustainable Energy (SASE) is designed to help students
find research opportunities in sustainable energy
technology, policy, and climate change.  SASE provides opportunities to present
your research, participate in competitions, and network with notable FSU alumni and faculty in the field.  Our goal is to build your resume for accelerated career placement.

FSU is leading the charge with innovative energy and policy research and, through this organization, we will keep FSU students - both undergraduate
and graduate - actively involved.

Our first meeting will be held in a couple of weeks, with the date and time to be announced. If you are interested in helping organize this new group, contact Chris Spencer at

Please spread the word about this group to your friends who might want to be involved!
Request a Tour of the Off-Grid Zero Emissions Building
Image of Melanie Simmons
Tours are by appointment only.
OGZEB is located in the parking lot behind the Love Building and Carothers on FSU's main campus, see
For tours, contact Shannon Ingersoll at
A Report of the Proceedings of the Florida Symposia on Offshore Energy - Part I and Part II - is Online

Symposium view

Access the Full Report Here

This report is a transcript of the Symposia series including presentation materials, citations and executive summaries for both Part I and II.

The FSU Institute for Energy Systems, Economics and Sustainability is a public resource. Here we carry out scholarly basic research and analysis in engineering, science, infrastructure, governance and the related social dimensions to further a sustainable energy economy. The Institute unites researchers from the disciplines of engineering, natural sciences, law, urban and regional planning, geography and economics to address sustainability and alternative power issues in the context of global climate change.
The Public Utility Research Center; and
The Florida Energy Systems Consortium.

Editor: Melanie Simmons at
FSU IESES Newsletter
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Tallahassee, FL 32310
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