Sonoma Vineyard Doubles as Renewable Energy Laboratory

Jul 3, 2017

Ryan Stoltenberg, an energy technician at Stone Edge Farm near Sonoma, stands amidst the complex plumbing at the Node 1 facility, where heat energy is extracted from hot water and stored nearby for other uses.
Credit Steve Mencher, KRCB

Micro-grids are scaled-down versions of the giant network that delivers electricity across huge distances to thousands of customers. They hold great promise for both utilizing renewable power and serving remote or isolated populations. And an important testing ground for this emerging technology is a local vineyard.

Stone Edge Farm is part of a group of related businesses that are each exploring ways to adapt renewable energy technologies to their operations. Ryan Stoltenberg runs through the various applications.

Within this room-sized installation at Stone Edge Farm, water is split to release hydrogen which is then stored to power fuel cell vehicles and for other uses.
Credit Steve Mencher, KRCB

For the Center for Climate Protection’s Woody Hastings, Stone Edge Farm’s work with creating and storing hydrogen is of particular interest.