Learning and sharing information about new microgrid technologies, the challenges posed by them, and networking opportunities, were some of the benefits of the recently concluded Microgrid Forum Asia. The Forum was held from November 11-13 at Hotel Park Royal on Beach Road, in the heart of Singapore.
Tech Soap Box – Innovation Rewarded
Another notable thing about the Forum was the Tech Soap Box (TSB) event. TSB is a concept unique to forums organised by Dufresne. It is a platform whereby individuals or companies can present an innovative key technology in front of an expert audience.
Each participant is given 10 minutes to explain and discuss his/her innovation Thereafter, the audience votes to select the winner on the basis of the features of the innovation, and how useful and unique it is in terms of design, conceptualisation and application.
The TSB trophy is a highly coveted prize, not just for the trophy itself – which can find pride of place on any mantel – but also for the fact that it is an acknowledgement of the winner’s achievement by a group of extremely knowledgeable and esteemed industry professionals.
This year’s participants for TSB included Lim Yun Seng, Associate Professor at the Department of Physical Science, Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (Malaysia); Robert Haendel, Head of Photovoltaic Systems Technology, Solar Energy Research Institute Of Singapore (SERIS); Palani Balaya, Assistant Professor, National University of Singapore; and Kristian Handberg, Business Development Manager, Percepscion (Australia).
And The Award Goes To…
After all the participants had presented their cases, the audience voted to choose the winner of TSB 2013. All the presentations discussed interesting and valuable topics and innovations. However, there can be only one winner and, this year, it was Kristian Handberg of Percepscion.
Mr. Handberg wears many hats. He is the Principal Consultant for DiUS Computing, an Australian-owned software technology company. He is also the Business Development Manager for Percepscion, a start-up dedicated to developing ‘smart energy’ products. Besides, he is also a Senior Research Officer at Monash University, where he is currently the Research Advisor and Academic Supervisor for the Institute of Transport Studies, Department of Civil Engineering.
Mr. Handberg is also a George Alexander Fellow at the International Specialised Skills Institute, where he has been awarded a study fellowship to research renewable microgrid opportunities for Australia. And finally, he has also served as project manager for the Victorian Government Electric Vehicle Trial, a significant project in the field.
Technological Innovation – ChargeIQ
Mr. Handberg’s presentation was titled ‘Demand Management of Electric Vehicle Charging for Microgrids’, wherein he presented an overview of emerging demand management technologies. In his presentation, he also demonstrated demand management through ‘grid-friendly’ Electric Vehicle charging, as well as how to implement demand management within a smart microgrid.
The case study that Mr. Handberg used for his presentation was that of the ChargeIQ intelligent electric vehicle charging system. ChargeIQ is part of Percepscion’s portfolio, a project which resulted in an improved business case for renewable microgrid, thereby appealing to the audience.
While receiving the award, Mr. Handberg expressed his happiness and thanked the audience for recognising the innovation and the effort that had gone into it.