MESSAGE FROM THE DIRECTOR
|Dr. James Fenton
I was very honored last month when the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) asked me to represent them with a presentation to the United States Council of Automotive Research (USCAR) Fuel Cell Tech Team. USCAR is the umbrella organization that coordinates research for DaimlerChrysler, Ford and General Motors.
This was an important meeting where DOE, in
concert with USCAR, discusses upcoming research plans in the
areas of proton exchange membrane fuel cell technologies and
applications for America's future fuel cell cars and trucks.
The meeting actually helps determine the priorities for Department
of Energy research programs for the coming year.
Web Site Identifies Biomass Resources in Florida
Though there has been a great deal of national
attention in recent months about the uses of ethanol crops for
transportation fuel, Florida has now taken its first steps to
begin to become a player in this area by the creation of a biomass
Research Project to Help Develop Higher-Performance Fuel Cells for Aerospace Power Needs
Jim Fenton and Nazim Muradov are leading a new research project
to optimize polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFC) for
aerospace auxiliary power applications, thanks to a $70,000 grant
from the State University System of Florida (SUS).
The project, part of the NASA-funded
SUS Florida Turbine Initiative, will help develop fuel cells
as a power source for a wide range of applications. NASA
is especially interested in PEMFCs as the main source of auxiliary
power in aerospace applications where key requirements are
fuel cell efficiency, power density and fuel flexibility.
Pinellas County Designated a Certified Green Local Government
The Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC)
has recognized Pinellas County’s outstanding environmental
stewardship by designating it as the first Certified Green County
Government in Florida.
Bill Young Conducts Solar Workshop in Haiti
|Bill Young recently spoke on solar energy
Several years ago, Bill Young, a senior research
engineer with FSEC, was asked by FAVACA to provide educational
and consulting services related to the use of solar energy in
disasters. This contact has resulted in trips to several island
countries, most recently to Haiti, one of the poorest counties
in the Caribbean.
Rob Vieira Designs a Hierarchal Tool for Energy Decision-Makers
FSEC’s Buildings Division director
Rob Vieira has designed an Energy Policy Pyramid showing five
levels of energy-saving strategies beginning with design and
ending with fuel choices.
The pyramid will help decision-makers prioritize strategies
to use in meeting their energy needs in the most cost effective
manner. It serves as a tool so policy decision-makers can properly
allocate their resources and take the most efficient actions.
Click here for a copy of his complete paper.
Electronic equipment can be a significant contributor to energy usage.
In a recent study of energy use in new homes,
FSEC’s Danny Parker and his co-authors looked at the growing
use of the "other" end-uses (appliances, lighting,
electronics, and miscellaneous equipment) in a home, especially
in new homes, where increasing floor area and amenities are leading
to higher saturation of these types of devices.
Parker and his colleagues, Richard Brown and
Gregory Homan (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) and William
Rittelmann (IBACOS), reviewed the findings of several field studies
to assess the current state of knowledge about these end uses
in new homes. The field studies include measurements of occupied
houses in Arizona, Florida, and Colorado, as well as in unoccupied
Their findings show that appliances, lighting,
electronics, and miscellaneous equipment can consume from 46%
to 88% of whole-house electricity use in current low-energy homes.
They also note that the annual consumption for the "other" end-uses
is not significantly lower in new homes (even those designed
for low energy use) compared to existing homes.
The paper shows how many "small" energy
users (such as internet routers, smoke alarms, garage door openers
and other typical household appliances) add up to significant
impacts on energy usage.
For a copy of their complete paper, click here.