Florida Solar Energy Center, The Energy Chronicle, a newsletter of the Florida Solar Energy Center header
A Research Institute of the University of Central Florida Issue No. 9: October 2006

Send your comments, suggestions and ideas for future issues to info@fsec.ucf.edu.



photo of people standing around listening to tour guide of FSEC
Visitors get a tour of FSEC facilities as part of the National Solar Tour on October 6. Nearly 200 people attended.Photo: Nick Waters


Installing Photovoltaic Systems
October 30 – November 3

EnergyGauge Rater Class 3
December 4
EnergyGauge Rater Class 2
December 5 - 6
EnergyGauge Rater Class 1
December 7 - 9
Fuel Cell Short Course
February 4 - 7, 2007





Dr. James Fenton
Dr. James Fenton

In preparing material recently for some proposals we are writing, I gathered some interesting information on the economic impact of renewable energy and energy efficiency on the people of Florida.

I knew that these fields had a pretty strong impact on the state's economy, but until I saw some of the numbers we collected, I really did not appreciate the tremendous impact that we are making today and the even more dramatic effects we can have in the future.

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“Cavity” Equipment Assures Accuracy of Solar Radiation Measurements

Photo of 2 people setting up equipment for calibration.
Setting up equipment for annual calibration.

FSEC staff calibrate all their instruments on a regular basis so that temperature, flow and other variables are correct when used.  The importance of solar radiation in FSEC’s work, along with the difficulty is setting the standards, makes this one aspect of the program a little more difficult.

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Linkous Studies Photocatalytic Algae Reduction to Help Homeowners

Photo of roofing material with algae.

Algae growth can reduce the reflectivity of white roofing material as shown here.
Photo: Nick Waters

In Florida, as well as in many other hot-climate states, algae growth on the surface of the roofing material causes the color to darken. Within a short time, the darker color causes the reflectivity to drop to approximately half of what it was, significantly impacting the capability of the roof to keep the building cool and greatly increasing the amount of energy needed to cool the building.

Now, there may be a new strategy using the sun to get rid of that algae problem.

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FSEC Works with Virgin Islands on PV System Quality Program

photo of photovoltaic array with ocean in the background.
PV array in John's Folly, Virgin Islands
Photo: Kevin Lynn

In 1999, the U.S. Virgin Islands Energy Office (VIEO) contracted with FSEC to establish a program to ensure that photovoltaic systems met quality standards.  FSEC’s Kevin Lynn recently visited the islands to conduct a detailed analysis of eight systems that have been installed as part of this program, and his report provides an interesting look at the types of projects that are suitable for remote locations.


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The Building America Industrialized Housing Partnership (BAIHP):
Saving Energy and Advancing the State of the Art in Residential Construction.

Building America U.S. Department of Energy Research Toward Zero Energy Homes logo

Over the next five years, the BAIHP team will conduct cost-shared research to accelerate the development and adoption of cost-effective, saving strategies that can be widely implemented by factory and site builders primarily in the hot-humid southeast as well as in marine and cold climates of the Pacific Northwest.   The 25 percent cost share for the DOE award will come from state and industry groups.

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This newsletter has been produced by Ken Sheinkopf, Sherri Shields, and Adrienne Henzmann.
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©2006 Florida Solar Energy Center/University of Central Florida
All rights reserved. • www.fsec.ucf.edu
Florida Solar Energy Center