Chuck Ross

Freelance Writer

Chuck Ross is a freelance writer and editor who has covered building and energy technologies for a range of industry publications and websites for more than 25 years. He specializes in building and energy technologies, along with electric-utility business issues.

Articles by Chuck Ross

April 2013
New Year’s Day brought wind-energy developers a belated holiday gift when Congress included in its fiscal-cliff budget deal a one-year extension of the production tax credit (PTC) that helps wind farms operate profitably. Slight changes in the language of the extended PTC will expand actual industry benefits beyond the stated Dec. READ MORE
March 2013
It’s understandable if that’s your reaction to what you anticipate will be yet another article extolling networked electric utility meters and talking refrigerators. These consumer-facing features continue to seem always another two or three years away from implementation. READ MORE
March 2013
We’re now more than a year into the release of the first two major players in the electric vehicle (EV) market—Nissan’s all-electric Leaf and Chevy’s hybrid-electric Volt, and results so far are decidedly, well, undecided. In the first half of 2012, sales figures were aiming toward the basement, but second-half results shot upward. READ MORE
March 2013
Today’s home automation market isn’t so much evolving as it is mutating, like one of those time-lapse videos of microbes in a Michael Crichton science-fiction movie. Product technologies seem to be developing faster than corporate marketing plans, so it can seem manufacturers are inventing new devices well in advance of actual consumer demand. READ MORE
February 2013
Conversations about renewable energy often come down to a comparison—solar versus wind, for example, or hydroelectric versus geothermal—as though one technology, alone, could provide the single answer to our need for safe, emissions-free electricity production. READ MORE
February 2013
In the late 1800s, Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse faced off in what has been called the “War of the Currents,” with Edison trumpeting direct current (DC) for its efficiency and safety and Westinghouse backing Nikola Tesla’s alternating current (AC) for its usefulness in large distribution systems. READ MORE
January 2013
With doom and gloom being the predominant message regarding U.S. manufacturing these last few years, it’s somewhat surprising to hear news of optimism in that sector lately. But suddenly, companies seem to be rediscovering the appeal of the “Made in America” label, even when attached to high-tech products that seemed lost forever to a maze of inexpensive Chinese subcontractors. READ MORE
January 2013
While the smart grid has been the topic of much conversation lately, specifics on what this supposed technical marvel will do, cost or look like in actual utility installations have been notably lacking. The largest smart grid demonstration project to date has just gone live in the Pacific Northwest to provide those specifics. READ MORE
December 2012
As you read this article, the election is over but wind-energy proponents likely still are biting their nails over their own extremely tight race. The fate of a tax credit that kept the wind industry growing throughout the recent recession is set to be decided during the lame-duck 2012 legislative session, and some equipment makers already are preparing for the worst. READ MORE