ASC Department of Energy
- This article is about the government branch. For energy production in Cyberia, see Energy in Cyberia.
The ASC Department of Energy (ASDoE or DoE), otherwise known as the Energy Department, is a Department of the Castle of the Unitary Government of Cyberia tasked with maintaining and upgrading the electrical grid of the Antarctic State, and its many forms of power generation and energy storage. The ASDE is the only major servicer of electrical power in the country, however small-scale repairs and other such individual level maintenance is allowed to be privatized. The Antarctic State's residential section of the power grid operates on a 480 volt three-phase configuration at 400hz alternating current. The majority of this power is generated from the widespread use of nuclear reactors; to a lesser extent, renewable/inexhaustible energies such as wind and solar power are also used.
Amidst the great expansion in the amount of departments that were cropping up in a kind of long-term reformation of the Cyberian government in the late 2060's, the Energy Department came to be the fourth one in the relatively steady expansion, following after the departments of Treasury, Resource Management, and Agriculture.
Whereas most departments during the expansion were split off from the eldest, the Department of Defense, the Department of Energy instead had split off from Resource Management, which was previously in control of all government-built nuclear reactors.
Office of the President of Energy
In the Office of the President of Energy, the Energy President's subordinate officers act as advisors for their president on all matters of power generation, electrical grids, large-scale projects such as upgrading or construction, and much more. The President of Energy has direct authority to order or veto energy-related government innovations, energy-related provisions to the public, as well as government contracting of private assets and intellectual property.
Electricity Generation & Storage
The Energy Department is responsible for the generation of most of the electricity in the Antarctic State, through various means of production, including but not limited to wind power, and most importantly, nuclear power. In order to smoothly cope with base load, peak load, and the transitions and spikes between the two, the DoE also puts large focus into energy storage efforts to help keep power demands continuously met at the greatest efficiency without having to increase or decrease the rate of power generation.
Cooperation with the Dept. of Infrastructure
In a close cooperative effort with the ASC Department of Infrastructure, both departments work diligently to provide district heating to the general public of the cities of Cyberia through the use of combined heating and power (CHP), otherwise known as "cogeneration". In this joint operation the still-hot waste heat of the Energy Department's power turbines is channeled all over the cities' infrastructure instead of being left to condense in cooling towers. While cooling towers are present, they are only seen in use if heating demand is low, which is almost never the case, making the towers largely a safety measure as opposed to a primary method of cooling. District heating is supplied to nearly all buildings within cities, which are legally required to heat public interiors (as opposed to private interiors such as houses, hotel rooms, or apartments) to a minimum of 15.6 °C (60 °F) and a softly enforced maximum of 21.1 °C (70 °F). Similarly, the responsibility of research and development into thermal energy storage is a large focus within the Energy Department for both power generation as well as public heating.
Grid Maintenance and Metering
The electrical grid of the Antarctic State is constantly monitored by the Energy Department through the extensive permeation of smart grid technology, allowing excellent levels of telemetry to be used in the pursuit of continuous improvement, quick recovery in the event of issues, as well as accurate and realtime metering of consumers. Unlike most countries, this metering takes the form of heat usage in addition to power usage.
Office of Nuclear Energies
The Office of Nuclear Energies is the most well known of the DoE's divisions, due to the Antarctic State's heavy reliance on fission power for the bulk of its power generation. A secondary part of this office includes the research and development of fusion power as opposed to fission power. However, this has received much less government-level attention in comparison to fission power, largely due to the relative abundance of uranium, as well as the high familiarity and high reliability of the already well-documented and well-engineered fission reactors.
Office of Renewable Energies
The Office of Renewable Energies is the arguably lesser known of the divisions, even as it is spread out over more land than the Office of Nuclear Energies. The Office of Renewable Energies is a research, development, and implementation division concerned with the common renewable sources of power generation such as wind, solar, wave, biomass, and to a much lesser extent, geothermal.
Office of Storage
The Office of Storage is arguably almost as important as the Office of Nuclear Energies in the fact that their work is quite integral to the electrical grid. The Office of Storage specializes in all types of energy storage, namely grid energy storage used to cope with the inherent challenge of continuously meeting demand. By implementing well-engineered grid energy storage, power input to the grid coming from various generation sites can be kept constant, while the burden of continuously meeting the ever-fluctuating demand is shifted more towards the storage-generation sites. Cyberia's most widely used method of grid energy storage is in the form of molten metal pumped from fission reactors stored in very well-insulated silos, released only when power demand exceeds power input, to heat exchangers whose superheated steam product is used to drive power turbines.
Supergrid Transmission, Distribution and Metering
The electrical grids within the Antarctic State are referred to as "supergrids" not just because of their area covered and deeply integrated smart-connectivity, but because a significant portion of the power lines are made of superconductors, specifically high-temperature superconductors. This has served to reduce the cost of electricity in some but not all parts of the cities, since less power is being lost through the resistivity of conventional cable types. City residential areas are supplied with a standardized spec of 480 volts of alternating current at 400hz, in a three-phase configuration. Industrial and otherwise commercial areas are less strictly standardized, and take up more or less depending on need at the time of building or rebuilding.