The Department of Defense (DOD) manages over 300,000 buildings on hundreds of military installations with an annual energy cost of more than $4 billion. DoD is reducing its energy costs through its Installation Energy Test Bed initiative. Advantek Consulting Engineering, Inc., a Melbourne, Florida based firm, was awarded an ESTCP-funded study demonstrating a low-cost innovative technology that provides significant cost savings by improving energy efficiency in roof- or ground-mounted heating and air conditioning systems used for small buildings of less than 100,000 square feet. Tens of thousands of these buildings exist on military installations throughout the United States.

In the ESTCP demonstration Dr. Michael West and Dr. Richard Combes of Advantek Consulting evaluated the new ClimaStat® technology in HVAC systems at two installations. ClimaStat is a refrigeration-science technology consisting of small devices with multiple sensors that regulate the pressure changes across an HVAC system.  Its key advantages are simplicity, reliability, maintainability, and low cost.  ClimaStat can be field-retrofitted into existing HVAC equipment or installed in new equipment. At Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, South Carolina, the study demonstrated 29 percent efficiency improvements on the retrofit of an existing system. At Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Patrick Air Force Base, Florida, the study demonstrated 17 percent savings on a brand new system. The payback periods for these two scenarios are 4 years and 3 years, respectively.

The ESTCP team used more than 90 sensors in the demonstrations, providing a rigorous test of the technology’s ability to improve energy efficiency. Both of the military installations that participated in the demonstration have plans to install additional ClimaStat systems. The demonstrations showed that there is great potential to use the technology to condition buildings on other DoD installations, as well as commercial buildings in the private sector.  For this significant work, Dr. West and Dr. Combes received the 2013 ESTCP energy & Water Project-of-the-Year Award.  Advantek is currently working on demonstrating the companion microprocessor based control technology, called EER Optimizer, at three military bases.

 

Originally published by Advantek Consulting Engineering, Inc.