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Energy Newsbriefs Blog

This current awareness service is prepared by the WSU Energy Program Library with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy State Energy Program. This information is provided for energy professionals and interested members of the public to highlight recent energy-related news, articles, and reports that discuss energy efficiency, energy conservation, and renewable sources of energy in engineering and policy circles.


3 Options for HVAC Energy Savings

Building Operating Management, June 2015, by James Piper.

"Even with today’s falling energy prices, facility managers are looking for ways to reduce the energy use of HVAC systems. New technologies and improvements in existing technologies are giving facility managers options. While advances can be seen in practically all HVAC systems, some of the most significant advances are coming in three particular areas: variable refrigerant flow systems, rooftop units, and geothermal systems."

Five Considerations for Choosing the Best Energy Efficiency Financing [Facilities]

Building Operating Management, June 2015, by Charlotte Kim.

An article in 5-parts:
Part 1: Finding Best Financing Options for Energy Efficiency Projects
Part 2: ‘Threshold Questions’ Help Find Path to Energy Efficiency Financing
Part 3: Financing Tools Include Energy Performance Contract, Energy Service Agreement Part
4: Utility On-bill Financing an Added Option for Energy Efficiency Projects
Part 5: PACE Financing an Option for More Extensive Energy Efficiency Projects

Driving Data Center PUE, Efficiency

Pure Power (supplement to Consulting-Specifying Engineer), Summer 2015, by Bill Kosik.

"For the last decade, power usage effectiveness (PUE) has been the primary metric in judging how efficiently energy is used in powering a data center. PUE is a simple energy-use ratio where the total energy of the data center facility is the numerator, and the energy use of the information technology (IT) systems is the denominator."

Evaluating UPS System Efficiency

Pure Power (supplement to Consulting-Specifying Engineer), Summer 2015, by Kenneth Kutsmeda.

"Many modern uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems have an energy-saving operating mode. Data show that very few data centers put it to use because of the potential risks."

Understanding Cogeneration Systems

Pure Power (supplement to Consulting-Specifying Engineer), Summer 2015, by Jerry Schuett and David Cummingham.

"Cogeneration systems—also known as combined heat and power (CHP) systems—generate both electricity and usable thermal energy. These systems typically are used on campuses that have high heat load requirements." Describes three CHP system prime movers: back-pressure steam turbine, combustion turbine, and reciprocating engine.

Implementing Microgrids: Controlling Campus, Community Power Generation

Pure Power (supplement to Consulting-Specifying Engineer), Summer 2015, by Paul Barter and Edward T. Borer.

"Microgrids are subsets of the regional electrical grid that have the ability to operate independent, or “island,” from the local utility. Microgrids normally operate in parallel with the utility, but they can operate in an isolated mode when utility service is interrupted or providing poor power quality. The design and operation of microgrids are optimized around the needs of the specific end users they serve."

Is VRF Right for Your Next Project?

Consulting-Specifying Engineer, June 2015, by Amara Rozgus.

"Variable refrigerant flow (VRF) systems can be specified into a variety of buildings, especially those that require flexibility. An overview of these systems and some best practices have been provided by Julianne Laue, PE, LLED AP BD+C, BEMP, senior energy engineer at the Center for Energy Performance, Mortenson, Minneapolis."

A Healthy Dose of Efficiency [Hospitals]

Business Energy, June 2015, by David C. Richardson.{}

"Hospitals may prioritize medical equipment, but can't ignore their unique HVAC needs."

Perspectives on Lighting Retrofits

Business Energy, June 2015, by Carol Brzozowski.{}

"Improved efficiency and safety, lowered costs and maintenance."

Case Study: Working Example: Zero Net Energy Center

High Performing Buildings, Summer 2015, by Michael Hummel and others.

"To prepare electrical apprentices for working in the sustainable building industry in Northern California, the Zero Net Energy Center is a working example of an emerging phenomenon. The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union 595 (IBEW) and the Northern California Chapter, National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) created a world-class learning environment for apprentices to gain hands-on experience with cutting-edge technology and electrical systems. The ZNEC also addresses the need to repurpose the existing building stock in the U.S. by transforming a typical 1980s suburban office building into a modern net zero energy showcase. "


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