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Member since: Wed Jun 8, 2016, 03:26 PM
Number of posts: 1,935

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I am nervous and excited at the same time.

I have an interview tomorrow for a Utility Scale Solar Engineering position at a large engineering firm. I want my last 10 years as an electrical engineer to mean something for my grandkids and great grandkids.


Interview went well!

It was a very interesting interview. One of the major hurdles slowing down the momentum of clean energy expansion is the building of the Point of Interconnection (POI) substations between the solar/wind farms and the transmission system. This is traditionally managed by the Utility Transmission Operator. The engineering staffs at these utilities are being overwhelmed with interconnection requests. Some of the major utilities are allowing the renewable EPC contractor and engineering firm to "self build" and manage the interconnection substation project. However, the firm has to be pre-approved by the utility. It is important to get this bottleneck removed, but the substation protection and design has to be designed and coordinated properly. Can you imagine how many hours the Fox propaganda and entertainment network would run a story if a fault in a wind farm or solar farm caused a regional blackout?

The hiring manager that interviewed me said that engineering graduates are flocking to renewable engineering jobs and have been doing so for a while. This made me smile, but it also means that there are 30 year old licensed P.E. solar engineers out in the market that have more utility solar farm experience than I do. However, the relay and substation experience I have gained in the traditional fossil fuel area means this 52 year old electrical engineer will help get these things properly connected to the grid. Plus, the company I am interviewing with is big on cross training and project crossover so I am sure I would be able to be a part of the solar farm teams and I can cross train some of the younger engineers with what I know.

I have an interview with the renewable substation team coming up.

Thanks for everyone's interest.
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