Lancium facility in Fort Stockton aims to boost renewable energy

As the epicenter of US energy, the Permian Basin leads the nation in crude oil and natural gas production.

But that epicenter also contains significant production of wind and solar energy, attracting companies like Lancium to the region.

Lancium, based in Houston, is a technology company that creates software and intellectual property solutions that enable more renewable energy on the grid. The company is building its first Clean Campus in Fort Stockton and a second under development in Abilene.

“There is so much renewable energy in the area,” Andy Schonert, director of corporate communications for Lancium, noted when stopping in Midland after visiting the Fort Stockton site. He said the first phase of the campus, which will deliver about 25 megawatts, will be fully online this summer and the company plans to reach full 325 MW capacity by the end of the year.

The Fort Stockton site, designed to be 100,000 square feet, already houses a mix of bitcoin mining, cloud computing and other powerful computing applications, Schonert said, listing biomedical research and computer-generated imagery.

“We see the benefit as bringing grid stability,” he said, explaining that the facility will be enabled by Lancium’s Smart Response system to act as manageable load sources, able to increase or decrease depending on of the demand load on the grid.

There is so much renewable energy in the area that even with local demand, he said renewables are being limited because there is not enough transmission capacity. The company’s controllable loads can act as a reverse power plant by absorbing renewable energy while providing the grid’s ancillary services.

“The special sauce for the company is our software,” said Schonert. He noted that the businesses using the facility are energy-intensive applications but can be interrupted. Lancium’s software can detect the need of the network and take action within seconds, he said.

“There is so much attention for energy generation, this is the demand side,” says Schonert.

The flexibility provided to the grid should transition to renewables, improving the renewables economy while providing grid stability and reliability, he added.

While the company currently hosts a mix of high-end applications, Schonert said Lancium also plans to host other applications, such as hydrogen development.

Schonert estimated that the Fort Stockton and Abilene facilities could create 57 jobs, such as network administrators.

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