Mesogrids as Stepping Stones to Supergrids

I have spent a good part of my life promoting and developing technologies for supergrids. I am aware of three other people who have been similarly committed to this concept, Peter Meisen, Gregor Czisch, and Dale Osborn. We can all see that supergrids of a continental scale are the most important technology that could enable basing our energy technology on renewable energy.

I have realized since 2012 that the only way to move the supergrid idea forward is to have stepping stone projects. I conceived of the mesogrid concept years ago, and I wrote an IEEE technical paper for the Power and Energy Society meeting at Clemson University on March 11th, 2019. In this paper "Mesogrids for Regional Power Delivery and Reliability," I presented layout maps for a mesogrid around the San Francisco Bay:

This map shows a logical layout for an underground high capacity elpipe loop around San Francisco Bay, which connects to numerous underground DC cables to individual substations around the region. 

This picture below blows up the area around Palo Alto to show some of the underground cables in that region.

I have also linked my PowerPoint and my live presentation of that paper. Regional mesogrids can be linked together with superconducting lines. This actually makes a superconducting supergrid far more practical by minimizing the number of points where the superconductor needs to electrically connect with conventional conductors. 

Implementation of supergrids will be one of the largest capital investments of the next century. It is natural that getting started is quite difficult. But we all depend on getting off our addiction to fossil fuels. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with the first step. There have already been many steps that have escaped the attention of the public. High voltage DC transmission technology is adequately advanced to address this now. My two inventions, the elpipe, and the ballistic breaker help to make this future scenario much more environmentally sound and economically acceptable. 

Although renewable energy is extremely popular, there still remains a huge ignorance about the fundamental importance of being able to share power resources over a continental scale to make non-dispatchable renewable energy practices.

Mesogrids are the logical stepping stones to a future supergrid. Every technology that has been developed for supergrids can also be applied to mesogrids. 

Moving the mesogrid underground around a large city can free up very valuable land by replacing the overhead transmission lines which currently deliver the power to the substations with underground high voltage DC cables and elpipes. The recovered real estate value can in some cases completely pay for the upgrade. Moving these transmission lines underground will make the grid much more stable against high winds, terrorism, and fires for example.

Because a regional DC mesogrid can average out all the power supply and consumption for a metropolitan area, it will help with the stabilization of the grid. Such mesogrids also make superconducting supergrids operating at the same voltage as the mesogrid (I have proposed 126kV) far more practical.


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