(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) announced that that the the $1 million she included for transmission grid research and development at Washington State University (WSU) in the fiscal year 2010 Senate Energy and Water Development appropriations bill has been included in the final version of the spending bill. The bill has now been approved by both houses of Congress after passing the Senate today by a vote of 80-17 and will now head to the President who is expected to sign it into law.
WSU’s grid reliability project aims to increase transmission grid reliability, which will create a greater capacity for renewable energy use—in this case, by developing new ways to ensure that the power grid that is more reliable, stable and secure than what is currently in use.
“WSU’s work developing these power grid updates is essential to increasing our state’s access to affordable and environmentally-friendly forms of energy,” said Senator Patty Murray. “This funding will support WSU’s work to improve grid reliability and will help reduce ensure a cleaner environment for future generations.”
“The success of efforts to upgrade the national electric grid to a so-called ‘Smart Grid’ depend heavily on the research being performed here at WSU by Dr. Anjan Bose and his team,” said WSU President Elson Floyd. “Their work on the computational mathematics that underlie the ability of the grid to communicate with itself and with its human controllers in real time is truly critical to all other efforts to increase electricity flow through the grid and to anticipate and prevent overloads and local outages that lead to large-scale blackouts.”
Our nation’s transmission system is badly aged and vulnerable to disruptions. WSU researchers are working to develop faster, more advanced technologies that will ensure the stability of the power grid, which will allow new clean, renewable sources of energy, such as wind and solar, to come online.