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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.

 


A Different Approach to Understanding Power Factor (Second of Three Parts)

Pumps & Systems, Oct. 2014, by Joe Evans.
http://www.pumpsandsystems.com/motors/october-2014-different-approach-understanding-power-factor-second-three-parts

"I hope that my last column (Pumps & Systems, September 2014) provided a clearer definition of power factor and how it can be calculated. Power factor can also be explained using a vector triangle, but comparing the voltage and current wave forms is more intuitive and can lead to a clearer understanding of what is actually going on."

Better Buildings Residential Program Solution Center

U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Oct. 28, 2014.
https://bbnp.pnnl.gov/

"Now available online, the Solution Center – a one-stop shop for residential energy efficiency program administrators and home performance professionals – highlights proven strategies that Better Buildings Neighborhood Program partners adopted to make energy efficiency more accessible to homes and businesses."

Green Building Certification Systems for Federal Buildings; Final Rule

U.S. Department of Energy, Oct. 14, 2014.
http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=DOE-EERE-OT-2010-0007-0084

"The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) issues a final rule that implements a provision in the Energy Conservation and Production Act, as amended by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which requires DOE to identify a green building certification system and level that DOE determines to be the most likely to encourage a comprehensive and environmentally-sound approach to certification of green buildings."

An Untapped Solar Market: The Renewable Potential of Multi-family Housing

North American Clean Energy, Sept./Oct. 2014, by Zach Axelrod.
http://www.nacleanenergy.com/articles/18582/an-untapped-solar-market-the-renewable-potential-of-multi-family-housing

"Solar energy is rapidly becoming a popular option for homeowners as a way to save money. But, what about folks who live in apartments or condos? Multi-family dwellings, as they are known, are providing the next potential growth opportunity for the residential solar industry. Now, innovative financing mechanisms allow even low-income families to take part in the benefits of solar power."

Research Aims to Help Dairy Farmers Generate Sustainable Energy

Nevada Today, University of Nevada, Reno, Oct. 1, 2014, by Kirstin Swagman.
http://www.unr.edu/nevada-today/news/2014/sun-grant

"A new, collaborative grant at the University of Nevada, Reno will further research into biomass conversion by developing a cost-effective process for large-scale dairy farmers to generate energy from manure.

The University's new grant, "Sun Grant: Power/Waste Biomass," totals more than $600,000 over two years, with the bulk of the funds coming from the U.S. Department of Agriculture."


DOE Denies Petition; AHRI Sues Over Rule

Air Conditioning, Heating, Refrigeration News, Oct. 13, 2014, by Jen Anesi.
http://www.achrnews.com/articles/127811-doe-denies-petition-ahri-sues-over-rule

"On Sept. 23, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) denied a petition from Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) and Lennox Intl. Inc. that asked the government agency to reconsider its June 3 final rule establishing energy-conservation standards for walk-in coolers and freezers (WICF). AHRI and Lennox, who argued the final rule was promulgated unfairly and contained nearly unattainable efficiency standards, filed the petition for reconsideration on July 30 in hopes the DOE would review its WICF final rule without the need for court intervention."

The Next Revolution in Solar Energy: High Efficiency Printable Tandem Solar Cells

CleanTech Alliance Washington, Oct. 22, 2014, by Julian Allen.
http://www.cleantechalliancewa.org/news/199118/The-Next-Revolution-in-Solar-Energy-High-Efficiency-Printable-Tandem-Solar-Cells.htm

"Funding from the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative will help catalyze the development of next-generation solar cells at UW.  Thanks to research at the University of Washington, the solar cells of the near future might be printed from inks and reach efficiencies more than double that of today’s typical solar cells, reducing the cost of electricity to below the level of even natural gas, the cheapest fossil fuel available now."

Can U.S. Offshore [Wind] Clear Cost Reduction Hurdle?

North American Windpower, Sept. 2014, by Michael W. Drunsic, Chris Elkinton & Paul Reynolds.
http://www.nawindpower.com/issues/NAW1409/FEAT_01_Can-U-S-Offshore-Clear-Cost-Reduction-Hurdle.html

"After a decade of slow progress, the U.S. offshore wind industry is gaining momentum, and there are many reasons to be optimistic about its future. However, the relatively high cost of offshore wind energy continues to represent the single biggest challenge facing the emerging U.S. market."

Energy Efficiency Improvements in 2013 Add to Impressive Regional [PNW] Savings

Northwest Power & Conservation Council News, Oct. 7, 2014.
http://www.nwcouncil.org/news/blog/energy-efficiency-saved-ratepayers-35-billion-in-2013/

"The Pacific Northwest improved its electric energy efficiency in 2013 by 268 average megawatts, an amount equal to the annual electricity demand of about 180,500 Northwest homes."

Better Information Will Transform Energy Use in Multifamily Buildings

American Council for and Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE), Sept. 30, 2014, by Lauren Ross.
http://www.aceee.org/blog/2014/09/better-information-will-transform-ene

"Last month, Fannie Mae released the first nationally representative sample of energy and water data for multifamily properties across the United States. The Multifamily Energy and Water Market Research Survey provides an insight into multifamily buildings’ annual spending on energy and water as well as other important trends and metrics. The report also responds to the lack of information on energy use in submarkets in the multifamily sector by providing separate breakdowns for affordable and market-rate units, tenant and owner-paid utility bills, and by building size and other important building features."

About

The Energy Newsbriefs Blog is a continuation of the weekly Energy Newsbriefs. Please bookmark this site and return frequently. Although we will not be accepting comments from within the Blog, we would be happy to hear from you by email at library@energy.wsu.edu

Archives of the weekly Energy Newsbriefs, from Oct. 2012 – Jan. 6, 2014, may be found on the WSU Energy Library web page.