Energy Internet and eVehicles Overview

Governments around the world are wrestling with the challenge of how to prepare society for inevitable climate change. To date most people have been focused on how to reduce Green House Gas emissions, but now there is growing recognition that regardless of what we do to mitigate against climate change the planet is going to be significantly warmer in the coming years with all the attendant problems of more frequent droughts, flooding, sever storms, etc. As such we need to invest in solutions that provide a more robust and resilient infrastructure to withstand this environmental onslaught especially for our electrical and telecommunications systems and at the same time reduce our carbon footprint.

Linking renewable energy with high speed Internet using fiber to the home combined with autonomous eVehicles and dynamic charging where vehicle's batteries are charged as it travels along the road, may provide for a whole new "energy Internet" infrastructure for linking small distributed renewable energy sources to users that is far more robust and resilient to survive climate change than today's centralized command and control infrastructure. These new energy architectures will also significantly reduce our carbon footprint. For more details please see:

Using autonomous eVehicles for Renewable Energy Transportation and Distribution: and

Free High Speed Internet to the Home or School Integrated with solar roof top:

High level architecture of Internet Networks to survive Climate Change:

Architecture and routing protocols for Energy Internet:

How to use Green Bond Funds to underwrite costs of new network and energy infrastructure:

Monday, July 21, 2008

The impact of Climate Change on Academic Research

The impact of Climate Change on Academic Research

Cyber-Infrastructure is part of the problem, but it is also part of the

NSF GreenLight at CAL-IT2 and PROMPT G-NGI initiatives to reduce Greenhouse
Gas (GHG) impact of academic research.

To date most academic researchers have not been particularly concerned about
the impact of climate change on their academic research. To many
researchers climate change only affects big polluters such as coal plants
and owners of SUVs. Surprisingly few members of the research community
appreciate the dramatic changes that will be required in the next couple of
years, if we hope to slow down the rate of temperature increase in the next
decade (never mind trying to stop or reverse climate change as result of GHG
emission). Every aspect of our lives will be fundamentally altered as
society starts to recognize the severity of the problem, including, and
especially in the way we carry out academic research.

Governments around the world are already starting to impose carbon
neutrality on public sector institutions such as universities, schools and
hospitals. This strategy is becoming increasing popular with governments as
the public sector is a large part of the economy and therefore a major
contributor to GHG emissions. More importantly it avoids the anguish and
controversy of imposing carbon taxes on the voting public.

University researchers and funding agencies had better be prepared for these
developments. The concept of mandated carbon neutrality will spread like
wildfire once governments around the world discover its many benefits.

Fortunately the academic research community already has many the tools at
hand, not only to be carbon neutral, but perhaps even achieve zero carbon
sustainability. It is becoming evident that one of the most important
scientific tools for research exploration at our universities is
cyber-infrastructure. Through the use of networks, grids, virtualization and
remote instrumentation and laboratories it is the one research tool that can
help reduce GHG emissions at our campus.

But currently cyber-infrastructure located "on campus" is part of the
problem. At many of our universities it is increasingly a major source of
GHG in its own right through the power it consumes. The beauty and power of
cyber-infrastructure is it removes the restriction that physical facilities
need to be located on campus. With high speed optical networks these same
facilities can be located at zero carbon data centers anywhere in the
country that have easy access to renewable energy. Relocating
cyber-infrastructure to renewable energy sites will be much cheaper than
trying to purchase renewable power locally on campuses in our cities, as the
university will be competing with businesses for that same power.

Two important initiatives are now underway which will help academic
researchers address the challenge of reducing their carbon footprint through
the use of cyber-infrastructure. The first is the PROMPT program for Next
Generation Internet to Reduce Global Warming. This is an international
partnership being led by PROMPT in Montreal with partners from the world
including Australia, The Netherlands, United States, China etc. It is a
research and commercialization initiative to help carry out research and
commercialize the next generation Internet technologies being developed at
our universities such as wireless devices, sensors, instruments and networks
through the use of virtualization and SOA, etc. The initiative is unique in
that rather than negotiating traditional licenses and royalties, payments
for companies who adopt the technology will be made through the purchase of
carbon credits. PROMPT will also work with universities in helping them
develop research practices and procedures in order to reduce their carbon
footprint. PROMPT proposes to develop a set of testbeds in Canada and with
its international partners to develop the necessary protocols to test verify
and audit the actual carbon credits in compliance with ISO 14064 that will
be possible through the application of next generation Internet

The second important initiative which is also important to the PROMPT
program is to actually measure the energy savings and CO2 reductions of
cyber-infrastructure equipment. To this end the NSF has awarded a research
team at CAL-IT2 funding for a project called GreenLight. This project,
measures, monitors, and optimizes the energy consumption of large-scale
scientific applications from many different areas. The work enables
inter-disciplinary researchers to understand how to make "green" (i.e.,
energy efficient) decision for IT computation and storage, thus helping to
re-define fundamentals of systems engineering for a transformative concept,
that of green CyberInfrastructure .

Academic research is about to go through a major revolution in the way and
how it is carried out. Cyber-infrastructure will play a critical role.
Researchers and institutions that are the first to adopt to these new way of
doing research will be the big winners in the future. --BSA]

For additional information:

The Impact of Climate Change on Academic Research



This project, developing an instrument called GreenLight, measures,
monitors, and optimizes the energy consumption of large-scale scientific
applications from many different areas. The work enables inter-disciplinary
researchers to understand how to make ?green? (i.e., energy efficient)
decision for IT computation and storage. Consequently, an experienced team
might be able to make deep and quantitative explorations in advanced
architecture, including alternative circuit fabrics such as Field
Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs), direct-graph execution machines, graphics
processors, solid-state disks, and photonic networking. The enabled
computing and systems research will yield new quantitative data to support
engineering judgments on comparative ?computational work per watt? across
full-scale applications running at-scale computing platforms, thus helping
to re-define fundamentals of systems engineering for a transformative
concept, that of green CyberInfrastructure (CI). Keeping in mind that the IT
industry consumes as much energy (same carbon footprint) as the airline
industry, this project enables five communities of application scientists,
drawn from metagenomics, ocean observing, microscopy, bioinformatics, and
the digital media, to understand how to measure and then minimize energy
consumption, to make use of novel energy/cooling sources, and employ
middleware that automates optimal choice of compute/power strategies. The
research issues addressed include studying the dynamic migration of
applications to virtual machines for power consumption reduction, studying
the migrations of virtual machines to physical machines to achieve network
locality, developing new power/thermal management policies (closed loop,
using feedback from sensors), classifying scientific algorithms in the
context of co-processing hardware such as GPUs and FPGAs, and developing
algorithms for resource sharing/scheduling in heterogeneous platforms. The
full-scale virtualized device, the GreenLight Instrument, will be developed
to measure, monitor, and make publicly available (via service oriented
architecture methodology), real-time sensor outputs, empowering researchers
anywhere to study the energy cost of at-scale scientific computing. Hence,
this work empowers domain application researchers to continue to exploit
exponential improvements in silicon technology, and to compete globally.
Although the IT industry has begun to develop strategies for ?greening?
traditional data centers, the physical reality of modern campus CI currently
involves a complex network of ad hoc and suboptimal energy environments in
departmental facilities. The number of these facilities increases extremely
fast creating campus-wide crisis of space, power, and cooling due to the
value of computational and data intensive approaches to research. This
project addresses these important issues offering the possibility to
improve. Broader Impacts: The project enables researchers to carry-out
quantitative explorations into energy efficient CyberInfrastructure (CI) and
to train the next generation of energy-aware scientists. It enlists graduate
students from five disciplinary projects, involves minority serving
institutions, and is likely to have direct impact on commercial components
of the nation?s CI.