Chuck Ross

Freelance Writer

Chuck Ross is a freelance writer located in Brewster, Mass. He can be reached at

Articles by Chuck Ross

September 2010
An electric car seems like such a simple, almost childlike, concept—you plug it in, charge it up, and it goes. But manufacturers and engineers leading the introduction of large numbers of hybrid and all-electric vehicles over the next several years are finding the effort to be surprisingly complex. READ MORE
August 2010
Sustainable design depends on a comprehensive understanding of a building’s siting and systems, so it seems reasonable to assume a more integrated design and construction process could play a role in project success. But with certification to the U.S. READ MORE
August 2010
The term “smart grid” is getting a lot of use these days, with related stimulus funding reaching into the billions of dollars and the popular press promising Jetsons-like advances; it has been predicted to enable our control of home appliances from our office desktops and allow us to supply electricity back to the grid and to use our plug-in electric vehicles. READ MORE
June 2010
Buildings that can make their own energy have long been a goal for environmentally motivated architects and engineers, but the means for doing so have mostly been limited to bulky solar panels and wind turbines high enough to raise the ire of almost any community’s zoning board. READ MORE
June 2010
“Tres Amigas” means “three friends” in Spanish, and developers of a major transmission hub bearing that amicable moniker hope their efforts to join North America’s three largest transmission interconnections proceed in an equally friendly fashion. Sited in Clovis, N.M., near the Texas border, the project would provide Eastern U.S. READ MORE
April 2010
With new generation capacity becoming both more difficult to get approved and expensive to finance, electric utilities are looking at more creative strategies for squeezing inefficiency out of customer-side distribution systems. One idea gaining attention—direct current (DC) distribution—actually represents a step backward to practices common during the days of Thomas Edison. READ MORE
February 2010
Bringing power to the people could be more than just a 1960’s era goal for social change if promoters of localized electricity distribution systems—called “microgrids”—have their way. Seen as one approach for safely incorporating on-site renewable resources into the larger utility grid, microgrids are gaining new attention among both researchers and marketers. READ MORE
February 2010
Large commercial, industrial and institutional building owners have been tracking their energy use for years, knowing that even the smallest efficiency improvements can make a big bottom-line difference in facilities of their scale. READ MORE
November 2009
Information is becoming an increasingly important commodity for electric utilities. Greater knowledge of transmission and distribution line conditions and customer-use patterns will advance the grid. Being able to communicate that information to and from line workers in the field is becoming just as crucial, and a new generation of devices is coming online now to help meet that need. READ MORE