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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.


Category: HVAC/R


Assessing the Radiant Roads to School Design

Engineered Systems, May 2016, by Chris Miller and Eddie Ortiz.

"Leaning on experience and data from various K-12 cities and projects, the authors pursue some less conventional design approaches. They may revolve around radiant heating and/or cooling, but depending on school size and other factors, the smart use of heat recovery, DOAS, and improved central plants could also put a project on the HVAC honor roll."

Replacing a Steam Boiler

Engineered Systems, Jun 2016, by Ray Wohlfarth.

"When designing or replacing a low pressure steam boiler, throw out everything you know about hydronic boilers. A steam system is closer in operation to an air conditioning unit than it is to a hydronic boiler. If you design a steam system using hydronic design methods, it will not operate properly. A hydronic system uses sensible heat while a steam system uses both sensible and latent heat. Sensible heat can be measured with a thermometer while latent heat causes a change of state and cannot be measured accurately with a thermometer. The following are some of the steps I take when designing a replacement steam system."

Tacoma Power Ductless Heat Pump Proposal Changes Washington State Energy Code

Northwest Public Power Bulletin, Apr. 2016, by Sonja Bert. -- scroll or jump to page 14.

"Tacoma Power's proposal to change the Washington State Energy code will soon make ductless heat pumps (DHPs) mandatory in some new construction homes. The change will save money for homeowners and help reduce the need for future power plants across the state."

Evaluating Chilled Water Cooling System Components

Chiller & Cooling Best Practices, May 2016, by Joe Leichner.

"While the chiller is the heart of a chilled water system, its support system of components and controls are equally critical to maintain and manage to ensure the highest system efficiency levels are attained. Emphasis is often placed on the chiller since it is the most visible and typically the highest energy element of a chilled water system. Yet, if you look beyond the flanges, there’s an opportunity to improve delivery of chilled water to the airside or process loads and maximize system efficiency."

School Integrates DDC for VRF to Improve Control, Energy Management

HPAC Engineering, Apr. 2016, by Alerton.

"When York County School Division renovated Magruder Elementary School in Williamsburg, Va., in 2015, it chose to install variable refrigerant flow (VRF) for heating and cooling. The wall controllers supplied by the VRF manufacturer, however, lacked dual set points, night setback, and consistent interoperability across competing systems, restricting the school division’s ability to manage energy use. For more robust and consistent control, [the VRF was integrated with a communicating sensor-controller combination]."

Unique Approach to High-Efficiency Laboratory-Exhaust Energy Recovery

HPAC Engineering, Apr. 2016, by Craig Buck.

"The addition of adiabatic/evaporative exhaust cooling to a laboratory run-around-coil heat-recovery system at the College of Charleston [SC]."

Case in Point: School District Aces Efficiency, Flexibility with VRF

Engineered Systems, May 2, 2016.

"Several schools in the Hazelwood School District north of St. Louis were retrofitted with heat recovery systems. This allowed some schools to reduce installed tonnage by up to 50% and also gave teachers greater control of classroom comfort."

Classroom Ventilation: Meeting Today's Challenges

Engineered Systems, May 2, 2016, by Steven G. Liescheidt.

"Budgets, codes, and technologies are constantly shifting and evolving. These days, even the classrooms are often portable. Staying one step ahead will depend on your knowledge of current design options and how to integrate them into the space."

A Comprehensive Look at the Intelligent Building

Consulting-Specifying Engineer, Apr. 2016, by Steve Brown, Kurt Karnatz, and Rob Knight.

"Technology is changing what’s possible for buildings. With the advent of smart building technology, heating, cooling, electrical, lighting, fire/life safety, and other systems need monitoring and intercommunication for optimized efficiency and operation."

Should we Promote Heat Pumps to Save Energy and Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions?

American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, May 4, 2016, by Steven Nadel.

"In order to examine which applications are good for obtaining cost-effective energy savings from heat pumps, ACEEE conducted a pair of analyses that we are releasing today. One addresses opportunities to replace electric resistance heat with heat pumps and the other addresses replacing gas furnaces with heat pumps."


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