Speaker Presentation: Jeffrey Wehner

Duke Energy Corporation
Vice President of Operations, Renewables


Jeffrey Wehner is the Vice President, Operations for Duke Energy Renewables. In this role, he manages Duke Energy’s wind, solar, and energy storage project operations, the Renewable Energy Monitoring Center and Duke Energy Renewables Services.  Mr. Wehner assumed his current position in July, 2013. Previously, Wehner served as a regional manager for Duke Energy Generation Services, coordinating merchant business operations throughout the Midwest.  Prior to this role, Wehner was area manager for Cinergy’s Narrows, Va., operations. At Narrows, Mr. Wehner led plant operations across multiple states, providing leadership to plant managers and positioning Cinergy for continued growth. Wehner also served as a senior engineer at Cincinnati Gas & Electric where he supervised the implementation of multiple federal programs and acted as an environmental liaison between the company and regulatory bodies.

Wehner earned a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from the University of Cincinnati, a Juris doctor degree from the Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University and a Master of Business Administration degree from Morehead State University.

“The Future of Renewable Energy”


TIME:  9:00 AM – 9:45 AM


Developing wind and solar farms have very similar requirements needed for establishing a connection to any bulk electric system (BES); for example, interconnection agreements, environmental compliance and land leases, just to name a few. Construction has its obvious differences with the roads, long cabling infrastructure and cranes needed for wind. While solar has similar construction activities as wind dealing with controls and interconnections at substations and EH&S concerns.

O&M that is data driven is the key to our early success. Duke Energy Renewables was the first to implement Condition Based technologies such as advanced pattern recognition, vibration, tribology and infrared to their entire wind fleet. The O&M challenges to renewable energy facilities are not that much different than traditional facilities except the asset could be several hundred feet in the air for wind or occupying a foot print of many acres for solar. There is the balance of plant activities, such as maintaining the substations, meters and control equipment which are no different than any other power station. The O&M of the actual site equipment, such as wind turbines, solar arrays and batteries is where the industry may vary somewhat. Duke Energy Renewables approach to O&M is a combination of the required preventative maintenance (PMs) and condition based maintenance based on site data. With data, all issues can be monitored and addressed or scheduled appropriately. Turbines running off their performance curves or solar arrays underperforming are tracked on a daily basis and maintenance is scheduled accordingly. O&M cost for wind and solar do differ. Cost vary based on equipment and its location but in general wind O&M cost twice as much as solar.

The Independent System Operator (ISO) control and data requirements for intermittent resources are becoming well established. Storage systems are the new players in the BES. How the ISOs, transmission operator (TO) and generator operator (GOP) will use, operate and market in the BES still needs to be established for storage systems.