ClimaStat® for Improved Air Conditioning Efficiency and Dehumidification” by Dr. Michael West

Military installations use unitary air conditioning systems for cooling and heating of buildings such as commissaries, classrooms, auditoriums and in portable environment control units. Humidity control is vital for occupant comfort and for meeting strict requirements for laboratories, control centers, hardware assembly and electronic equipment. Unitary air conditioners use direct expansion (DX) of liquid refrigerant to produce cooling. The typical operating energy efficiency of DX systems is half that of chilled water systems, and DX equipment accounts for 54% of facility air conditioning energy use. ClimaStat® is a refrigeration-science technology that can be factory installed in new DX systems as well as field-retrofit to existing packaged air conditioners. The technology involves optimized refrigerant management and strategic control of air through the evaporator coil, resulting in lower energy consumption. Increased dehumidification allows thermostat set points to be raised a few degrees, further reducing energy consumption without compromising occupant productivity. ESTCP demonstrations show that ClimaStat provides a 15 to 30% improvement in system energy efficiency, a two-fold increase in dehumidification, reduction in compressor run hours and cooler compressor operation without adverse effects on reliability. Energy savings of up to 60% can be realized in systems utilizing reheat for humidity control. A thorough life-cycle cost analysis shows a payback period of 2.6 years (new unit) to 4.0 years (field retrofit).

"Using Remote Audits to Achieve Energy Efficiency in the Department of Defense" by Ms. Cara Brill

In recent years, the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) has launched several initiatives to reduce its fossil fuel use by improving energy efficiency. Reducing the amount of energy used across DoD’s portfolio of buildings is a significant opportunity and key to reducing emissions and energy consumption across the U.S. However, identifying and profiling the energy savings potential of individual buildings presents significant challenges for DoD’s large and diverse building portfolio. ESTCP engaged FirstFuel Software and its advanced meter analytics platform to assess the ability of data analytics to address these challenges. This platform has helped large government agencies and utilities rapidly and cost-effectively target, prioritize, quantify, enable, and track energy savings in heterogeneous building portfolios, at scale. This project examined how DoD could measure the impact of energy audits across hundreds of buildings. To conduct each remote audit, FirstFuel utilized four pieces of information: (1) One year of historical electric interval consumption data; (2) weather data from the building’s closest weather station; (3) geographical information systems (GIS) information from the building’s location; and (4) a building information survey completed by DoD site energy managers. This webinar discussed the outcomes of this project.


Speaker Biographies

Dr. Michael West is Principal-CEO of AdvanTek Consulting and founded the Melbourne, Florida, company in 2006. Mike has over 20 years of experience in HVAC performance and design, energy efficiency measurement and verification, and central energy plant optimization. His background includes seven years of research and development experience in advanced energy technology as a faculty member at the University of Florida, and design of thermal environmental systems for U.S. Navy submarines. Mike has a deep interest in HVAC product development and thermal energy technologies. Beginning with his masters’ thesis research, Mike focused his career on HVAC innovation, and has successfully piloted multiple advanced technology projects. He has authored many articles for the practicing HVAC designer and hands-on facility manager, including "Low-Cost Dedicated Outdoor Air Systems," and "Specifying High-Performance Rooftop Units,” as well as numerous pioneering technical papers. Mike studied Mechanical Engineering at the University of Maryland where he earned a bachelor’s degree from the Glenn L. Martin Institute of Technology. He received a doctorate in Thermal Science from the University of Florida in 1992, is a licensed Professional Engineer, and holds EPA 608 Types I, II, and III refrigerant certifications.

Ms. Cara Brill is the manager of Customer Success Operations for FirstFuel Software in Lexington, MA. She brings deep project development and management experience to her work with complex customers within the cleantech sector. Since 2012, Cara has led many of FirstFuel’s utility and government client projects including the DoD Rapid Building Assessment, the General Services Administration (GSA), and Efficiency Maine. She works closely with FirstFuel's engineering delivery team to manage the engagement of building operators and owners – from initial outreach through delivered energy efficiency savings. Prior to FirstFuel, Cara worked for the cleantech start-up Ze-gen where she managed the company's regulatory and project development efforts. Cara led the successful effort to secure initial regulatory approval for Ze-gen's first commercial gasification facility. Cara graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Richmond where she was a double major in History and Rhetoric & Communication Studies.