Hurricane Ida: What It'll Take for New Orleans to Restore Power

Hurricane Ida: What It'll Take for New Orleans to Restore Power

Those repeated disasters mean that utilities have a recovery playbook for storms like Ida. But knowing what order to run those plays in depends entirely on the unique conditions left behind by each hurricane—which regions remain inaccessible for days due to flooding, and which specific components of the system need extensive repairs.

Water Supply Hacks Are a Serious Threat—and Only Getting Worse

Water Supply Hacks Are a Serious Threat—and Only Getting Worse

The specifics of how Travnichek allegedly obtained access to Post Rock Rural Water District’s network after he left the utility remain unclear; the indictment says only that he “logged in remotely.” He’d had a remote login when he worked there, court documents say, for after-hours monitoring.

CES 2021 Highlights: 79 Gadgets and Glimpses Into the Future

CES 2021 Highlights: 79 Gadgets and Glimpses Into the Future

Wi-Fi 6E is a new standard for home networking gadgets—routers, security cameras, internet-connected doorbells—that allows these devices to utilize the 6-GHz wireless spectrum.This new 6-GHz band is also a higher-bandwidth slice of the wireless spectrum, so Wi-Fi 6E devices can send stronger, faster signals that contain more information.

Is Lightning-Fast Plasma the Key to a Cleaner Car Engine?

Is Lightning-Fast Plasma the Key to a Cleaner Car Engine?

For years, the Vehicle Technology Office has been focused on swapping out conventional gasoline with more environmentally friendly biofuels .“An internal combustion engine can utilize a wide range of fuels, and some of those can be partially renewable,” says Howell.

Why Do Solar Farms Kill Birds? Call in the AI Bird Watcher

Why Do Solar Farms Kill Birds? Call in the AI Bird Watcher

So in 2013, a group of utilities, academics, and environmental organizations came together to form the Avian Solar Working Group to develop strategies to mitigate avian deaths at solar facilities around the US.“There was very little research about the impacts of solar on birds,” says Misti Sporer, the lead environmental scientist at Duke Energy, an electric utility in North Carolina, and member of the working group.

The Debate Over Burning Dead Trees to Create Biomass Energy

The Debate Over Burning Dead Trees to Create Biomass Energy

Along with thinning trees in overcrowded forests, Kusel says, biomass projects help rebuild rural communities by creating jobs, all while preventing the massive carbon emissions released in wildfires.Kusel’s projects utilize dead, diseased, and burned trees, along with the small-diameter green trees that he says overcrowd forests and contribute to fire danger.

Iranian Hackers Have Been ‘Password-Spraying’ the US Grid

Iranian Hackers Have Been ‘Password-Spraying’ the US Grid

But they’ve been working to gain access to American electric utilities, long before tensions between the two countries came to a head .On Thursday morning, industrial control system security firm Dragos detailed newly revealed hacking activity that it has tracked and attributed to a group of state-sponsored hackers it calls Magnallium.

An Iranian Hacking Campaign, Social Media Surveillance, and More News

An Iranian Hacking Campaign, Social Media Surveillance, and More News

In a new report, the security firm Dragos details hacking activity against American electric utilities and attributes it to a group of Iranian hackers called Magnallium.That's the weight of Sony's new concept car , which debuted this week at CES.

Cheap at Last, Batteries Are Making a Solar Dream Come True

Cheap at Last, Batteries Are Making a Solar Dream Come True

“It’s a pretty big deal for us,” says Chad Raley, who manages technology and renewables at Ameren, a Missouri utility that is building three rural solar-plus-storage projects to better manage the flow of electricity across the local grid.

Every State Should Monitor Methane to Meet Climate Goals

Every State Should Monitor Methane to Meet Climate Goals

Last week, Santa Fe-based Descartes Labs (where Mark is a cofounder) announced a bold initiative to utilize satellite mapping and modeling to monitor methane emissions, starting in the world’s highest-producing oilfield, the Permian Basin.

A Court Says Repealing Net Neutrality Was (Mostly) OK

A Court Says Repealing Net Neutrality Was (Mostly) OK

In its decision Tuesday, the appeals court also ruled that the FCC hadn’t adequately considered how repealing the net neutrality rules would affect public safety, utility pole regulations, and an FCC program that subsidizes phone and internet service for low-income families.

See How LA Belches Emissions, Block by Block

See How LA Belches Emissions, Block by Block

So instead of relying on satellites alone, a group of researchers combed through data from a dizzying number of publicly available sources, looking at everything from traffic patterns to utilities data to air pollution reporting, to quantify the emissions from not just every road but every building in the nearly 5,000 square miles of the Los Angeles megacity.

How Formula E Racing Makes Electric Cars Faster, Smarter, Funner

How Formula E Racing Makes Electric Cars Faster, Smarter, Funner

Now five seasons old , Formula E is meant to utilize racing —long a rolling laboratory for automotive development, yielding advancements like antilock brakes, traction control, and dual-clutch transmissions—to help EV manufacturers and suppliers like BMW, Nissan, Audi, Panasonic, Mahindra, and Jaguar move their battery-powered products forward .

GE Sells Solar-Business Stake to BlackRock

GE Sells Solar-Business Stake to BlackRock

The GE deal comes as investors begin prioritizing a solar segment that was once viewed as riskier than developments for utilities or homeowners: projects for commercial and industrial customers.

Blame Utilities for Wildfires, But Blame Everyone Else Too

Blame Utilities for Wildfires, But Blame Everyone Else Too

Cut off power and you risk the ire of the state's Public Utilities Commission: Skirting the danger of starting a wildfire could end up bricking medical devices and critical infrastructure.

The Radical Plan to Change How Antibiotics Get Developed

The Radical Plan to Change How Antibiotics Get Developed

Which means it may be time to stop asking pharma to make them, and create some other entity—a government institute, an international nonprofit, a utility—to perform the task instead.

This Casino's Microgrid Might Be the Future of Energy

This Casino's Microgrid Might Be the Future of Energy

Working with scientists at the Schatz Energy Research Center at nearby Humboldt State University, and the local utility PG&E, the Rancheria developed its own solar-powered microgrid, allowing it to disconnect from the main grid and run off Tesla battery power.

The Existential Crisis Plaguing Online Extremism Researchers

The Existential Crisis Plaguing Online Extremism Researchers

Feelings of helplessness and symptoms associated with post-traumatic stress disorder—like anxiety, guilt, and anhedonia—are on the rise, they said, as warnings go unheeded and their hopes for constructive change are dashed time and time again.“We are in a time where a lot of things feel futile,” says Alice Marwick, a media and technology researcher and professor at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.

The Grid Might Survive an Electromagnetic Pulse Just Fine

The Grid Might Survive an Electromagnetic Pulse Just Fine

The study by the Electric Power Research Institute, a utility-funded research organization, finds that existing technology can protect various components of the electric grid to buffer it from the effects of solar flares, lightning strikes, as well as an EMP from a nuclear blast, all at the same time.

Elizabeth Warren Fires a Warning Shot at Big Tech

Elizabeth Warren Fires a Warning Shot at Big Tech

If you don't have a plank on tech platforms, it will be very notable." Warren's plan envisions a new category of company called a "platform utility." This would include companies "that offer to the public an online marketplace, an exchange, or a platform for connecting third parties." That includes, of course, Facebook, Google, and Amazon.

Quantum Physics Could Protect the Grid From Hackers—Maybe

Quantum Physics Could Protect the Grid From Hackers—Maybe

“It’s like working on a car with its engine running.” Sungjin Kim/Getty Images Cybersecurity experts have sounded the alarm for years: Hackers are ogling the U.S. power grid. Peters’s group thinks that a utility company could use quantum-encrypted data to communicate with their hardware.

The Siberian City Where the Winter High Is –40°F

The Siberian City Where the Winter High Is –40°F

"As long as you dress warmly outside, you're not in danger." The series also documents the creative ways Yakutsk residents manage the cold, including building their houses on stilts so the central heating doesn't melt the permafrost—in Russia, Yakutsk is known as "the city on legs"—and placing all sewage, water, and utility lines above ground to keep them from freezing.

Google and Microsoft Warn That AI May Do Dumb Things

Google and Microsoft Warn That AI May Do Dumb Things

The warning appeared for the first time in the “Risk Factors” segment of Alphabet’s latest annual report, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission the following day: “ New products and services, including those that incorporate or utilize artificial intelligence and machine learning, can raise new or exacerbate existing ethical, technological, legal, and other challenges, which may negatively affect our brands and demand for our products and services and adversely affect our revenues and operating results.

Lyft Sues New York City Over Driver Minimum Wage Rules

Lyft Sues New York City Over Driver Minimum Wage Rules

(Via’s utilization rate is higher than Uber’s not because it has more drivers but because it offers only shared rides, much like Uber’s ride-pooling service, UberPOOL.) “Our lawsuit does not target the law passed by City Council but instead addresses the specific way the TLC plans to implement the rules, which would advantage Uber in New York City at the expense of drivers and smaller players such as Lyft,” Lyft spokesperson Campbell Matthews said in a statement.

To Prevent Wildfires, Treat Utilities Like Railroad Barons

To Prevent Wildfires, Treat Utilities Like Railroad Barons

(PG&E declined to comment for this story, pointing instead to a press release that says it will “make investments in system safety as it works with regulators, policymakers and other key stakeholders to consider a range of alternatives to provide for the safe delivery of natural gas and electric service for the long-term in an environment that continues to be challenged by climate change.”) Utilities know full well how to manage their risk.

Underwater magician

Underwater magician

Based at Bream Bay, Whangarei, Crispin is also an acclaimed underwater photographer and the recipient of numerous photography awards. Chasing paper nautilus was our first New Zealand Geographic project and it was a toughie! We have several projects on the go in New Zealand.

In Project Maven's Wake, the Pentagon Seeks AI Tech Talent

In Project Maven's Wake, the Pentagon Seeks AI Tech Talent

Thousands of the company’s employees had signed a petition two months earlier calling for an end to its work on the project, an effort to create algorithms that could help intelligence analysts pick out military targets from video footage.Inside the Pentagon, Google’s withdrawal brought a combination of frustration and distress—even anger—that has percolated ever since, according to five sources familiar with internal discussions on Maven, the military’s first big effort to utilize AI in warfare.About This StoryThis article was produced in partnership with the Center for Public Integrity, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization.“We have stumbled unprepared into a contest over the strategic narrative,” said an internal Pentagon memo circulated to roughly 50 defense officials on June 28.

City Driving Is Silly Fun in Arcimoto's Electric 3-Wheeler

City Driving Is Silly Fun in Arcimoto's Electric 3-Wheeler

City Driving Is Silly Fun in Arcimoto's Electric 3-WheelerGoing on sale next year for around $11,500, the Arcimoto FUV—that's Fun Utility Vehicle—is an all-electric joyride.Phuc Pham“It’s fully electric!” Mark Frohnmayer yells to the guy in the pickup truck idling next to us. The 17.5-kilowatt-hour battery sits underneath the two tandem seats.Frohnmayer launched Arcimoto after making a bundle selling his videogame company.

Range Rover's New Evoque Is Made to Conquer the Parking Lot

Range Rover's New Evoque Is Made to Conquer the Parking Lot

Its maker, though, can handle the grumblings—Jaguar Land Rover has sold 772,000 Evoques since introducing the luxury compact SUV in 2010.As it pushes for the million mark, it makes sense that JLR has upped the “utility” with those civilized, civilian customers in mind: The newly unveiled latest generation of the Evoque is built to conquer the mall parking lot.Naturally, the 2020 Evoque comes stuffed with coddling goodies.

The Hail Mary Plan to Restart a Hacked US Electric Grid

The Hail Mary Plan to Restart a Hacked US Electric Grid

After failures plague Utility B, Utility A then needs to step in, restarting to offer redundant power to that same critical customer.In order to interact and safely share electricity, utilities also need to get their electromagnetic frequencies in tune at around 60 hertz, so part of the exercise involved not just getting Utility A and B running, but syncing them."We had 18 substations, two utilities, two command centers, and we had two generation sources that we had to bring up a crank path and synchronize," says Stan Pietrowicz, a researcher at Perspecta Labs who is working on a black start network analysis and threat detection tool through RADICS.

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