The Scottish Executive this week launched a project that will involve rooftop wind turbines being attached to five primary schools. Wee Tam vowed to bring in his catapult the morn's morn...

The Scottish deputy enterprise minister, Lewis Macdonald, was at Collydean primary school, Glenrothes, on Tuesday to watch the first installation of the Swift wind turbine, made by Scottish company Renewable Devices

Other Fife schools will be fitted with the turbines and, if this pilot project proves successful, the turbines could appear on buildings across Scotland.

Macdonald said: "This is an exciting development and I’m delighted that a leading edge Scottish company is at the forefront of this research."

The Scottish Executive said it would increase the amount of electricity in Scotland produced by renewable energy to 40% by 2020.

The IIE has had its licence for registering chartered engineers confirmed following its recent five-yearly review by EC(UK).

Originally, IIE members that made the transition to CEng registration were required to register via another institution. Last year the institution was awarded additional licenses to register chartered engineers. These, alongside the licences for registering engineering technicians and incorporated engineers, have now been confirmed, meaning the institution can now offer a full one-stop service to all its members.

“We are delighted to have passed the review with flying colours,” said chief executive, Peter Wason. “IIE will remain the champion of the applications engineer and the technician in addition to being able to provide value for money in supporting members’ career development aspirations across all categories of registration.”

The IIE’s council is now considering the way ahead for the organisation in the wake of the suspension of talks between itself, the IEE and ImechE.

While the council hopes efforts to further the “substantial progress” made between the institutions can continue – possibly to the extent of returning to the negotiation table – it recognises the need to plan the institution as a continuing separate entity.

The council concluded that there should be no fundamental changes in its strategy; it is appropriate to examine in detail how IIE can maximise efficiency in delivering value to members. Under a ‘work smarter’ remit, Wason and his staff will carry out a root-and-branch review of operations seeking to automate routine tasks further to free up staff time. In addition, IIE will focus on strengthening partnerships with employers and academics to encourage increases in membership.

UVDBlive, an event for professionals involved in the utility supply chain, takes place at the NAC complex at Stoneleigh Park, near Coventry, from 28-30 September.

Organised by the Achilles group, in association with Electrical Review, the exhibition enables direct buyer and supplier contact in a dedicated B2B environment with focus on the Utilities Vendor Database (UVDB) community of 65 utility organisations, who will host their steering group meeting at the venue.

At UVDBlive, managers will be able to assess important services like software development, fleet management, hazardous-materials handling and risk assessment. Visitors to the event are likely to include directors, buyers and engineers from the gas, water, electricity and telecommunications industries, as well as contractors.

For further details, visit www.achilles.com/uvdblive.

Forssa, 100km west of Helsinki, was the first medium-sized CHP plant in Finland to be fired solely on wood-derived fuels. Today, the plant also burns municipal waste and peat with peak and stand-by steam supplies catered for by two heavy-fuel oil boilers. With an output of 17.2MWe of electricity and 48MWth heat, the Forssan plant, operating in CHP mode, is 90% efficient.

Ari Simola, plant manager, told Electrical Review that it takes 4,000 trucks a year to supply the sawdust, bark and small branches from the local logging industry that Forssa uses. “The price we pay for the fuel is dependent on its moisture content,” he said. “Wood is burnt during summer and peat in winter for this reason.” He also said that the household waste it currently burns will no longer be available when the EU’s 2005 waste directive on emissions comes into force in Finland

Built in 1996 at a cost of 1000euros per megawatt, Forssa has been a model for subsequent bio-fuelled plant although with the opening up of Nordic electricity markets the electrical output is no longer competitive. The bubbling fluidised-bed boiler, built by Foster Wheeler, is capable of burning a variety of fuels, generating steam at 22.8 kg/s, 61 bar and at 510 degreesC.

Hot corrosion, possibly due to chlorine from green chips, has been a problem and superheater tubes need to be replaced occasionally.

30% of Finland’s energy needs are met through renewable sources such as hydropower, forestry products and residues from the pulp and paper industries. The world’s largest bio-power plant is on the west coast next to the Wisaforest saw mill. Its circulating fluid bed boiler generates 240Mwe, 100MWth of process steam and 60MWth for district heating.

Today, Finland has adequate plant to meet its district heating needs but electricity demand is out stripping the country’s ability to generate or import sufficient supplies. A new 1,600MW nuclear power plant, the country’s fifth, is planned for 2010.

ABB has been awarded further contracts for the Caspian Sea oil and gas projects.

The company will supply equipment for the offshore platforms, the pipeline construction and an onshore terminal for both the oil and gas projects.

For the terminal and platforms, ABB is supplying, installing and commissioning an integrated control and safety system. This comprises a process control system and an integrated safety system. The safety system features self-contained systems consisting of a fire and gas sub-system covering process and non-process areas and separate emergency shutdown sub-systems for the process area.

These components will provide process control, emergency shutdown and fire and gas protection on the Central Azeri, compression and water-injection platform, the East Azeri and West Azeri oil platforms and at the Sangachal oil terminal.

ABB products that will be used on the terminal and platforms include Operate IT operating stations, AC 450 controllers and SG400 Safeguard controllers. S800 remote I/O and the S900 I/O mounted in ‘Exe’ rated cabinets for zone 1 mounting will also be used.

The company will provide Introl control valves for all platforms and variable speed drives will be delivered by ABB in Norway for pump control.

The Electricity Innovation Institute said it would this year award grants totalling up to $500,000 (£280,000) to academic institutions for research into applications of nanotechnology to the electric power system.

Proposals should look at ways nanotechnology could upgrade the current electric system beyond its present capabilities, including the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity. Areas could include energy storage, CO2 sequestration, catalysts and membrane materials for fuel cells and photovoltaics, capture of air toxics, remediation of fossil and nuclear waste, development of novel sensors and high current tables (superconductors or quantum conductors).

The institute will accept submissions from faculty members and research organisations affiliated with academic institutions until 15 June 2004. The maximum grant for a 12-month period will be $100,000 (£56,000).

For more information, visit www.e2i.org.

Domestic combined heat and power is set to revolutionise the home energy market by enabling customers to produce part of their own electricity while heating their homes and reducing electricity bills. Those with an interest in the environmentally friendly technology are advised

A new report on the building management systems market says the market – at manufacturers’ selling prices – was worth £352m in 2003 and forecasts it will reach £386m by 2007.

Among other factors, AMA Research says the recently subdued market was down to relatively stable conditions in the overall construction market –and because the concept of 'energy efficiency' has not met expectations in motivating the market. However, it says tougher legislation may have the desired effect.

Priced at £565, AMA claims the report is invaluable to sales and marketing people in the industry, containing analysis of market size and trends, key market influences, product segmentation, application mix and key suppliers.

See www.amaresearch.co.uk for further details.

CIBSE has developed new software verification tests that provide a standard means of testing the accuracy of building design software.

The test will be launched at a one-day seminar organised by CIBSE in conjunction with professional indemnity insurers and quality assurance experts.

Apart from the reassurance that the software they are using is producing correct designs, the tests enable engineers to show that it has also been verified as accurate.

The seminar will also cover the liabilities for non-compliance with Part L and the Energy Performance Directive. Liabilities related to health issues in buildings – such as Legionella, Asbestosis, and smoking – will also be addressed.

The event takes place at the Building Services Engineering Centre, Balham, London on Tuesday 29 June 2004.
For more information, contact the CIBSE Events team on 020 8675 5211.

Analysts placed Socomec Group at the top of customer satisfaction ratings for service, performance and supplier experience in a Frost & Sullivan report on the views of sensitive equipment users towards power quality matters in Europe.

Socomec took the Frost & Sullivan Award for Customer Service Excellence for the UPS market after analysts evaluated the views of 140 power equipment customers in Europe.

The subsequent report says: “End-users ranked Socomec Group the leading European UPS supplier for service and customer care, in a market where service quality is among the top three criteria for the selection of suppliers.”

Socomec was ranked joint-highest for customer perception of its technical knowledge, performance of its products and the experience of its technicians. It also achieved the top rating for customer intimacy – a measurement of ability to understand and satisfy specific requests and work closely with clients.