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Browse Building Energy Efficiency Marketing Summaries

Building Energy Efficiency Technology Marketing Summaries

Here you’ll find marketing summaries of building energy efficiency technologies available for licensing from U.S. Department of Energy laboratories and participating research institutions. The summaries provide descriptions of the technologies including their benefits, applications and industries, and development stage.

84 Technology Marketing Summaries
CategoryTitle and AbstractLaboratoriesDate
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Aluminum-doped Zinc Oxide Nanoink

Scientists at Berkeley Lab have developed a method for fabricating conductive aluminum-doped zinc oxide (AZO) nanocrystals that provide a lower cost, less toxic, earth-abundant alternative to the widely used transparent conductive oxide (TCO) indium tin oxide while offering comparable optical and electronic properties. TCOs are used in devices such as flat screen displays, photovoltaic cells, photochromic windows, chemical sensors, and biosensors.

08/15/2014
Updated!
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Simergy: Practitioner-Oriented Graphical User Interface for EnergyPlus

Simergy is a graphical user interface (GUI) for the DOE building energy simulation program EnergyPlus for modeling building heating, cooling, lighting, ventilation and other energy flows. 

08/11/2014
New!
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Transparent Conducting Oxide

Transparent conducting oxides (TCOs) are utilized in a wide range of opto-electronic applications such as the manufacture of LCDs, touch panel devices, window coatings, and photovoltaic solar cells. Manufacturing involves depositing a metal oxide as the thin film on top of a substrate. Achieving the desired opto-electronic properties of the thin film is typically dependent on the amount of oxygen introduced during the deposition process as it produces a tradeoff between electrical... read more

07/28/2014
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High Bandgap Phosphide Approaches for LED Applications

NREL is closing the LED "green gap" with a patent-pending technology that allows for easy manufacturing of low-cost amber LEDs that—when combined with red, green, and blue LEDs—produce brilliant broad-spectrum white light more efficiently than current LEDs. This RGBA color-mixing technique enables low-cost, easy-to-manufacture white LEDs with improved luminosity.

This novel device architecture achieves nearly double the efficiency of current amber LEDs by... read more

07/28/2014
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Hole Selective MoOx Contact for Junctionless Silicon Solar Cells, LEDs, Photodetectors and Transistors

Using an ultrathin (~15 nm in thickness) molybdenum oxide (MoOx , x<3) layer as a transparent hole selective contact to n-type silicon, researchers at Berkeley Lab demonstrated a room-temperature processed oxide / silicon solar cell with a power conversion efficiency of 14.3%. While MoOx is commonly considered to be a semiconductor with a band gap of 3.3 eV, from X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, the researchers showed that MoOx may be considered to behave as a high... read more

06/24/2014
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CO2-Based Glue

This patent-pending technology titled "Poly (Hydroxyl Urethane) Compositions and Methods of Making and Using the Same" is available for licensing and/or further collaborative research from the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory.

The adhesive is a "green," environmentally friendly epoxy that utilizes inexpensive CO2 as a starting material, consists of composites that can be cured either thermally or with light, and has a... read more

05/14/2014
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The Sandia Cooler

In a conventional CPU cooler, the heat transfer bottleneck is the boundary layer of "dead air" that clings to the cooling fins.  This insulating layer is largely unaffected by the impinging airflow generated by the fan.  The radically different approach described herein overcomes this thermal bottleneck, generating a several-fold improvement in cooling performance in a device that is smaller, quieter, and immune to clogging by dust. 

04/10/2014
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Thermal Imaging Technique for Measuring Mixing of Fluids

There are multiple methods for measuring fluid flow. Current methods rely on different physical principles such as: pressure measurement, particle tracking using images, heat removal from a wire and Doppler shift measurements. However, infrared images are not used to quantitatively measure flow properties, fluid mixing, or mass concentration of fluids.

These existing techniques for measuring two dimensional velocity fields, such as particle image velocimetry (PIV), require expensive and... read more

03/03/2014
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Predictive Control of Hot Water Heaters

Water heating in residential homes can account for as much as 15% of total energy use. It is the second largest end use after space heating and cooling. With a renewed interest in energy efficiency for both financial and environmental reasons, water heater companies have seen increased demand from consumers for more efficient water heaters. While various technologies have been developed, control systems can add significant savings to the best technologies.

02/28/2014
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Data Center Alternative Cooling Analysis Tool

Data centers use large amounts of energy. Consistent large loads of energy are required for data center efficiency and reliability. Four different cooling technologies, including direct expansion (DX), the air-side economizer, the direct evaporative cooler, and the multistage indirect evaporative cooler, are examined for climate appropriateness and cooling energy reduction in data centers.

These technologies are examined individually and in combination with others to categorize seven... read more

01/10/2014
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Techniques for Growth of Lattice-Matched Semiconductor Layers

There are many potential applications for high-performance devices fabricated using III-V materials, including high efficiency solar cells, solid-state lighting, and high-speed transistors. In each case, the specific device designs rely on combinations of various materials where the lattice mismatch between the different materials can introduce problems for device performance and the deposition processes can be cost-prohibitive. With each of these markets approaching multi-billion dollars... read more

12/27/2013
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SolOPT: PV and Solar Hot Water Hourly Simulation Software Tool

In order to increase the speed and scale of Renewable Energy (RE) solar project deployment on buildings, energy savings analysis and a strong business case is required. This software provides an hourly simulation to optimize rooftop area for combined solar photovoltaic (PV) and solar hot water (SHW) systems or solely PV. The program calculates energy savings, demand reduction, cost savings, C02 reduction, and building life cycle costs including: simple payback, discounted payback,... read more

11/04/2013
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Low Cost, High Efficiency Tandem Silicon Solar Cells and LEDs

Wladek WalukiewiczJoel Ager, and Kin Man Yu of Berkeley Lab have developed high-efficiency solar cells that leverage the well-established design and manufacturing technology of silicon cells while delivering the performance previously achievable only by far more complex and expensive tandem solar cells. 

10/24/2013
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Efficient, Low-cost Microchannel Heat Exchanger

A research team at the University of Colorado has developed a novel heat exchanger design and accompanying manufacturing technique for creating low-cost microchannel heat exchangers from plastics, metals, or ceramics. The prototype used laser welding (upper red lines at right). Expansion makes “chessboard” counter flow pattern (lower right). The figure below shows mass production, where sheets are added one at a time and welded with a mask and filament (left) or laser (right).... read more

10/17/2013
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APIs for Online Energy Saving Tools: Home Energy Saver and EnergyIQ

Berkeley Lab is offering direct access to Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) for two popular, proven energy saving online tools: Home Energy Saver and EnergyIQ. The APIs allow software developers to access the algorithms and underlying data for Home Energy Saver and EnergyIQ and to use them for the development of customized web interfaces or other services.

06/24/2013
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Organic Flash Cycles for Intermediate and High Temperature Waste Reclamation

Researchers at Berkeley Lab have developed a highly efficient technology for the reclamation of waste heat in mechanical heat engines widely used in solar-thermal, geothermal, and industrial processes. This new approach yields gains in efficiencies for both high temperature and intermediate temperature thermal sources, marking a significant advance over strategies that focus predominately on high temperature efficiency solutions.

04/30/2013
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Hedgehog™ Water Contaminant Removal System
The in-tank recirculating treatment system reduces the levels of contaminants in water storage tanks. A recirculation pump continually sends water though a treatment in order to reduce the levels of contamination.
04/05/2013
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Electrochemical Solution Growth: Gallium Nitride Crystal Growth
Sandia National Laboratories has developed a disruptive new crystal growth technology, called Electrochemical Solution Growth (ESG).  This technology has a high potential for producing the high-quality, large-area, and economical bulk gallium nirtide (GaN) substrates needed to meet the performance requirements of high-efficiency LED and high-power transistors.  Substrates are the bulk wafer material on which opto/electronic think film devices are fabricated; they dictate the... read more
03/19/2013
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Startup Design Features for Supercritical Power Conversion Systems
Sandia National Laboratories has created solutions to startup flow issues in supercritical conversion systems.  The Supercritical Brayton Cycle is a power conversion system that is undergoing extensive testing and advancements at Sandia Labs.  The brayton cycle system has the ability to achieve higher efficiency and more cost effect power conversion than current art forms. 
03/12/2013
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Autonomous Combustion-Powered Hopping Robot
Sandia’s hopping robotic platform provides a groundbreaking, energy efficient capability. Hopping mobility has been shown to be five times more efficient than hovering when traversing obstacles at heights under 10 meters.
03/12/2013
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Non-Invasive Energy Meter
Sandia has developed an energy monitoring device that measures energy from liquid flow systems (e.g., solar systems) using a simple technique that senses when the system is running and then estimates the BTU energy production. Current energy meters must be installed into the system to measure how much energy the system is producing or losing. This involves cutting pipes, installing thermal wells, and flow meters, and/or connecting sensors to pump motors in the system. This often requires... read more
03/12/2013
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Security Risk Assessment Methodologies (RAM) for Critical Infrastructures
In the mid 1970s, the Department of Energy (DOE) designated Sandia as the Lead Laboratory for development of physical security technology and funded Sandia to develop a technical capability in security modeling and systems analysis, security equipment and components, and security systems engineering, integration and implementation.

For more than 30 years, Sandia has applied performance-based methods for designing and evaluating physical protection systems (PPS). This approach has been applied... read more
03/12/2013
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Electrical Cable Testing by Pulse-Arrested Spark Discharge (PASD)
Sandia has developed an advanced electrical wiring diagnostic system capable of detecting insulation defects in complex wiring systems. The portable diagnostic system detects and accurately locates hard to find insulation defects as breached insulation, chaffing, and insulation cracks. PASD could greatly reduce the time required to track down wiring defects, as it can typically locate these defects within inches.
03/12/2013
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Method for the Production of Mineral Wool and Iron from Serpentine Ore

This invention discloses a method to fabricate a product that has the potential to replace asbestos, which harbors health and environmental risks, with magnesium silicate-based mineral wools. The mineral wool product yields advantages similar to asbestos while eliminating its inherent detriments.

01/18/2013
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Tunable Magnetic Regenerator/Refrigerant
Magnetic regenerators utilize the magnetocaloric effect--the ability of a magnetic field to reduce the magnetic part of a solid materials entropy, generating heat, and then removing the magnetic field, permitting the reduction of temperature with the change in entropy. The cyclic heat generation and absorption in adiabatic magnetization and demagnetization. This invention uses a specific mix of rare earth magnetic materials capable of producing both a first and second order phase... read more
12/07/2012
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Regenerator for Magnetic Refrigerants
Ames Laboratory researchers have developed a new magnetic material that can be used at low temperatures (sub liquid hydrogen) for magnetic refrigerators.
12/07/2012
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Cost Effective Production of Giant Magneto-Caloric Materials
The giant magnetocaloric material Gd5(SixGe1-x)4, useful for various types of refrigeration applications, from liquifaction of helium (4K) to room temperature air conditioning and climate control, has just become more cost effective with the development of this new method for utilizing commercially available Gd to produce it.
12/07/2012
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Image Processing Occupancy Sensor

Lighting controls offer significant potential for reducing that energy use, and new technologies that have emerged in recent years have enabled a wide range of innovative strategies, from room-level awareness of occupancy and daylight sensing to building-wide coordination of a fully networked system. About 40% of the average facility’s electrical load is dedicated to lighting, creating a sizeable market for energy efficient lighting hardware and software tools. The global market for... read more

11/08/2012
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Indestructible Ultra-filtration: Ceramic HEPA Filters

High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters are widely used commercial products to remove airborne particulates from a gas stream in a gas process system or ventilation system. Filter life span is determined by filter design and materials. Existing HEPA filters are made from glass fiber, which is fragile and easily damaged. They are subject to handling errors. Shelf life is reduced by contact with moisture. They are damaged by high pressures, chemical attack, high temperature, and fire.... read more

07/25/2012
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Energy Saving System to Remove Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) from Indoor Air
Scientists at Berkeley Lab have developed a catalyst and deployment devices to improve indoor air quality and reduce ventilation energy needs.
07/17/2012
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Material-Independent Design of Photoluminescent Systems
Nanomaterials have attracted much attention recently because of their unique functionality. Researchers at ORNL have discovered a method to make nonluminescent nanostructured materials luminescent (photoluminescent and/or electroluminescent), independent of the starting material. This material-independent approach enables conversion of many different types of nanomaterials for optoelectronic applications such as light-emitting displays, solar panels, optoelectronic sensing and imaging... read more
07/17/2012
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Citizen Engagement for Energy Efficient Communities (CoNNECT)
Promoting energy efficiency is a primary focus for achieving sustainable energy. There have been many programs that target the use of energy efficient technologies. But to increase the likelihood of achieving desired energy savings, citizens need to go beyond one-time improvements that are often not monitored and measured over time. By allowing consumers to easily analyze and share their own energy usage data, an effective and sustainable way of achieving energy efficiency goals can emerge.
07/11/2012
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Structural Composites with Enhanced Moduli of Elasticity

The invention provides a low cost structural composite alternative for use in typical structural lumber/wood applications in building construction, marine, transportation applications, and the like.

06/21/2012
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Organic-Inorganic Complexes Containing a Luminescent Rare Earth-Metal Nanocluster and an Antenna Ligand, Luminescent Articles, and Methods of Making Luminescent Articles
Battelle has developed a material capable of spectral conversion, that is, absorbing light across a broad range of wavelengths and re-emitting this light in a narrow wavelength range. These materials can then be integrated into devices to convert solar radiation into energy. In one implementation, this material can be applied to a solar cell to enhance the absorption efficiency of the solar cell. In a second implementation, this material can be placed between two panes of glass, and used to... read more
06/11/2012
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Energy-absorbent Material and Method of Making

This invention relates to materials that absorb and dissipate energy and/or selectively allow energy to be transmitted – in particular, polymeric materials that include polyol(s) such as polyethers, polyesters, polyether/esters, acrylics, plus other formulary components such as hydroxyl-terminated polybutadienes, polyisocyanates, silicone, RTV (room temperature vulcanizing) silicone, and  suitable catalysts. Included are such polymeric materials that are resilient and resist... read more

06/08/2012
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Process for Fabrication of Efficient Solar Cells
Ames Laboratory researchers have developed a process for fabrication of solar cells with increased efficiency. 
03/23/2012
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Fault Detection and Isolation in Low-Voltage DC Distribution System

Small-scale low-voltage distribution systems, such as a microgrid, have many advantages to traditional AC distribution systems. Although AC-bus based systems can readily use the existing AC power grid technologies, grid issues including synchronization, reactive power control, and bus stability are inherited as well. DC-bus based systems can be a feasible solution because they are small, localized systems that cause the transmission loss to be negligible. Moreover, it does not need to... read more

03/20/2012
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New OLED Cathode Materials with Tailored Low Work Function
Organic light-emitting devices (OLEDs), utilizing organic materials to produce light, consume relatively little power. OLEDs are composed of three essential elements: the anode, a light-emitting layer, and the cathode. The requirements of the cathode and anode limit the types of organic material that can be used for the light emitting layer. The work functions of the conductors must match the appropriate energy levels of the light emitting material. These devices have a high failure rate,... read more
03/07/2012
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Customizable Fuel Processor Technology Benefits Fuel Cell Power Industry (ANL-IN-00-030)

Fuel cells work by using a highly efficient electrochemical oxidation process to convert the chemical energy in hydrogen to electric power and heat. Because hydrogen does not occur freely in nature, it must be produced from water or hydrogen-rich fuels. The energy for the hydrogen-production reaction is derived from the fuel or a renewable source (e.g., wind, solar, geothermal). The challenge is to develop a fuel processor that is effective, efficient, and marketable. Argonne National... read more

02/07/2012
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Low-cost, Modular, Building-integrated Photovoltaic-Thermal Collector

Buildings consume approximately 40% of the energy, and nearly 70% of the electricity used in the United States. Building surfaces are well suited to renewable energy production. The surface area of a typical residence is large enough to produce the electricity required to operate the building. However, in order to achieve net-zero energy use, solar thermal collectors are often required to produce hot water for domestic and space heating needs or pre-heated ventilation air.
Current problems... read more

12/16/2011
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Robust Low-Frequency Spread-Spectrum Navigation System
The Triply Redundant Integrated Navigation and Asset Visibility System (TRI•NAV) developed by researchers at ORNL expands the ability of GPS navigation systems to reliably function under a variety of adverse conditions, as well as detect multipath, jamming, or spoofing-induced errors. TRI•NAV synergistically combines the use of GPS with a ground-based radio-frequency (RF) scheme known as TPS (the Theater Position System) and a low cost, mid-level performance inertial navigation system... read more
10/25/2011
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Real Power Regulation for the Utility Power Grid via Responsive Loads
A new methodology for dynamically managing an electrical system was invented by researchers at ORNL. Balancing power generation with load demand is critical to ensuring a stable and reliable power supply. This invention provides a new solution to power regulation that can eliminate operational inefficiencies and potentially save the utility industry significant energy generation costs each year.
10/25/2011
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Reactive and Catalytic Air Purification Materials
Sorbents for the removal of toxic in-dustrial gases such as ammonia and phosgene. The materials offer reactive and/or catalytic sites within a high surface area, hierarchical pore structure.
10/06/2011
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Carbon Nanotube Field Emission Devices

Novel field emission sources using carbon nanotubes have been developed by Berkeley Lab researchers Alex Zettl and Marvin Cohen. The Berkeley Lab technology overcomes problems currently associated with field emission devices (FEDs).

08/22/2011
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Utility Promoters for Biomass Feedstock Biotechnology

Genetic optimization of biomass is necessary to improve the rates and final yields of sugar release from woody biomass. Areas that would benefit from genetic optimization include growth rate, environmental stress tolerance, yields of easily fermentable polysaccharides, total lignin content, lowering biomass recalcitrance to fermentation, and wood density.

Successful application of biotechnology requires both gene discovery and a proper means for gene expression control. However, commercial use... read more

08/15/2011
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Augmented Reality Building Operations Tool

In the United States, residential and commercial buildings together use more energy and emit more carbon dioxide than either the industrial or transportation section.  According to the Department of Energy, buildings use 39% of our total energy, two-thirds of our electricity, and one-eighth of our water. As a result of these fundamental environmental issues, the increasing cost of energy and our current economic challenges, there has been a growing urgency to operate building systems with... read more

06/24/2011
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Heat Transfer Interface for Thermo-Solar Energy
Alex Zettl of Berkeley Lab has invented a high efficiency solar energy collector and converter. By addressing both solar absorption and heat transfer elements, the resulting technology promises to be more efficient than conventional thermo-solar energy methods.
06/13/2011
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Synthesis of High Efficiency Thermoelectric Materials

Thermoelectric materials can convert heat into electricity and vice versa. To be useful, however, the materials should exhibit a high electrical conductivity along with a low thermal conductivity. This is a combination very difficult to achieve. By using non-equilibrium processing techniques, thermoelectric materials are produced that achieve these competing goals, leading to high efficiency thermoelectric devices for electricity generation from waste heat or compact cooling.

04/15/2011
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Advanced Analysis Software Key to New, Energy-Efficient Technologies

Supported by funding from the U.S. Department of Energy, other federal agencies, and industry sponsors, Argonne is providing broad-based scientific and engineering expertise to create analytical software tools that will enable the United States to make substantive enhancements in energy efficiency and serve the growing demand for renewable energy.

04/05/2011
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Efficient Polymer Solar Cells
Ames Laboratory researchers have developed a process for producing more efficient polymer solar cells by increasing light absorption through a thin and uniform light-absorbing layer deposited on a textured substrate. 
03/28/2011
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Facility Energy Decision System (FEDS™) Software
The Facility Energy Decision System—or FEDS—Software is a user-friendly, menu-driven, Windows-based software program that provides a comprehensive method for quickly and objectively identifying facility energy improvements that offer maximum life-cycle cost savings.
03/28/2011
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Rapid Cooling Using Ice Slurries for Industrial and Medical Applications
Under funding from DOE in the late 1980s and early 1990s, Argonne researchers developed ice slurry technology for industrial and municipal applications—specifically, to replace chilled-water cooling systems in building complexes. Because of the high energy content of ice slurry, its cooling capacity is many times greater than that of single-phase fluids. Ice slurry coolants in HVAC systems can therefore provide more efficient cooling, with substantially lower operational and equipment... read more
03/25/2011
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Decision Support for Operations and Maintenance (DSOM)

The Decision Support for Operations and Maintenance (DSOM®) system is an expert operations and maintenance system that combines online condition monitoring and control of equipment. This allows plant operators, maintenance staff, engineers, and administrators to use one enterprise-wide system to monitor operations in and make adjustments according to streamlined, real-time information.

01/24/2011
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Compact Absorption Chiller

The Compact Absorption Chiller uses microchannel technologies in an absorption heat pump which produces cooling using heat as the primary energy source.

01/14/2011
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Thermoelectric Ambient Energy Harvester
A novel thermoelectric generator (TEG) design by PNNL allows the conversion of ambient thermal energy into electric power for a variety of low-power uses. These miniature TEGs are able to power wireless sensors and their associated radio frequency transmitters used in a wide range of remote monitoring applications including building energy management, automotive component controls, agricultural monitoring, security surveillance, and wildlife management.
01/14/2011
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Method for Creating Photonic Band Gap Materials
Innovative microstructures that can direct light in a manner similar to the way semiconductors can influence electrons can be produced by creating what is termed a photonic band gap. These microstructures have the potential to change the way optoelectronic devices, such as photodiodes, LEDs, and integrated optical circuit elements, are designed and used. ISU researchers have developed a method for creating photonic band gap materials that is economical and does not require the use of... read more
12/28/2010
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First Diode for Thermal Management of Micro and Macro Devices
Alex Zettl, Arun Majumdar and colleagues at Berkeley Lab have invented the first solid state thermal rectifier. The device consists of a boron nitride nanotube (BNNT) loaded at one end with a high mass density material - specifically, trimethyl cyclopentadienyl platinum (C9H16Pt). The researchers achieved thermal rectifications as high as 7 percent at room temperature. Mass loaded carbon nanotubes (CNTs) were found to display thermal rectification of 2 percent.
12/27/2010
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Electrochemical Method of Controlling Thiolate Coverage on a Conductive Substrate
This invention is a way to apply thiolate using a thermodynamically controlled electrodeposition process on a substrate such as gold in such a way as to predictably cover the substrate with a partial monomolecular layer over a predetermined area.
12/16/2010
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Fabrication of Emissible Metallic Layer-by-Layer Photonic Crystals Using Microtransfer Molding with Electro-Deposition
Iowa State University and Ames Laboratory researchers have developed a method for increasing the efficiency of conventional incandescent light bulbs.
12/16/2010
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Production of Giant magnetocaloric Substances Using Commercially Available Raw Materials
The giant magnetocaloric material Gd5(SixGe1-x)4, useful for various types of refrigeration applications, from liquifaction of helium (4K) to room temperature air conditioning and climate control, has just become more cost effective with the development of this new method for utilizing commercially available Gd to produce it.
12/16/2010
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Regenerator for Magnetic Refrigerants
Iowa State University and Ames Laboratory researchers have developed a new magnetic material that can be used at low temperatures (sub liquid hydrogen) for magnetic refrigerators. Magnetic refrigeration is being investigated as an alternative to conventional gas compressor technology for cooling and heating because of its potential to save energy and reduce operating costs. The potential utility of magnetic refrigerants has been demonstrated using gadolinium palladium (GdPd) alloys. However,... read more
12/16/2010
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Microbially Mediated Method for Making Semiconductor Nanoparticles
To address the commercial need for bulk production at a reasonable cost, ORNL researchers developed a microbially mediated method for the production of semiconductor nanoparticles. This invention also offers a means of microbial synthesis that yields a purer and more uniform product.
12/08/2010
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Energy Saving Absorption Heat Pump Water Heater
ORNL’s new absorption heat pump and water heater technology offers substantial energy savings and can reduce the use of fossil fuels by buildings. While conventional heat pump water heater designs are limited to using toxic ammonia water systems, this system uses heat drawn from the ambient environment to achieve energy efficiency. This approach extends the application of the invention beyond industrial settings to residential and commercial use.
12/08/2010
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Water-Heating Dehumidifier
A small appliance developed at ORNL dehumidifies air and then recycles heat to warm water in a water heater. The device circulates cool, dry air in summer and warm air in winter. In addition, the invention can cut the energy required to run a conventional water heater by an estimated 50 per cent.
12/08/2010
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Super Energy Saver Heat Pump
ORNL researchers developed a broad class of dynamic hybrid phase change materials and coupled them to residential heat pumps, inventing a super energy saver heat pump. This invention significantly improves heating/cooling efficiency in existing pumps and decreases greenhouse gases, due to reduced energy consumption.
12/08/2010
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Water Heater Controller

The Water Heater Controller is a device that provides smart grid services from existing, installed electric water heaters. The device uses the water heater’s thermal energy storage to provide fast, autonomous regulation (both up and down) and short-duration spinning reserves for the power grid. Additionally, as part of a communicating energy management system the Water Heater Controller can shift the power demand for heating hot water to non-peak power demand periods. These services... read more

08/03/2010
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Thin-Film Lithium-Based Electrochromic Devices
Electrochromic cells change their light transmission characteristics based on the direction of an applied electric field. In short, they are comprised of an electrolyte sandwiched between two electrodes (a cathode and an anode), where each electrode will darken or bleach based on the flow of ions (and electrons) in or out of the electrode. For lithium-based electrochromic cells, the electrolyte contains mobile lithium which enables lithium ion transfer between the electrodes. The present... read more
07/28/2010
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High Performance OLEDs with Air-stable Nanostructured Electrodes
Scientists at Berkeley Lab have modified the cathode-organic layer of an OLED device to significantly enhance electron injection efficiency and reduce the sensitivity of the cathode to environmental degradation by water and oxygen. Two approaches are used:
1. An ordered arrangement of nanostructures (top-down processing) or
2. A nanomaterial interfacial layer (bottom-up processing).
07/28/2010
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Domestic Hot Water Event Schedule Generator

Residential hot water use in the United States accounts for 14-25% of all the energy consumed in a home. With the rise of more advanced water heating systems, more advanced monitoring and testing of hot water applications is crucial to ensure energy efficiency. Previous technologies make simplifying assumptions about hot water usage that neglect to take into account complex occupant behavior. This can lead hot water system designers to overestimate their energy savings by up to 20%. National... read more

07/28/2010
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SUNREL Software
Historically, building performance professionals have not had reliable tools for estimating energy usage. This information deficiency has led to building upgrade and retrofit recommendations which may not be reliable or cost-effective. Scientists at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have designed SUNREL, an hourly energy simulation engine which precisely estimates the energy consumed by a residential building. This technology enables auditors to accurately predict energy usage... read more
07/28/2010
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Tunable Thermal Link
Thermal links are incorporated into everything from frying pans to internal combustion engine spark plugs and heat sinks on integrated circuit boards. Typically, the link’s thermal resistance is fixed and cannot be tuned after manufacture. While the ability to tune electrical resistors is widespread, virtually no tunable thermal resistance link exists, which has held back the development of thermal systems.
07/28/2010
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Ultraclean Low Swirl Combustion
Burners are used in industry for a wide range of applications including water heaters, power generators, oilers, and HVAC systems. Parallel consumer applications include gas-fired home water heaters, heating systems, and clothes dryers. Natural gas is more efficient and less expensive than electricity and is the current and future fuel of choice. However, conventional gas burners emit oxides of nitrogen (NOx) creating ozone in the lower atmosphere due to incomplete fuel combustion and high... read more
07/28/2010
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TRAMS: A New Tracer Gas Airflow Measurement System
The technologies currently available to measure airflow rates in duct systems require careful use and substantial time to produce accurate measurements. Traditional measurement systems use Pitot-static tubes or hot-wire or other anemometers to measure velocities at several locations in the cross section of an airstream. It is very difficult to accurately measure airflow rates using these methods because of problems such as large spatial variation in air velocities and air velocities that are so... read more
07/28/2010
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Low Cost, Stable Switchable Mirrors: Lithium Ion Mirrors with Improved Stability
Switchable mirrors are a new generation of electrochromic windows that can alternate between a reflecting state and a transparent or absorbing state when a small voltage is applied. These energy saving devices have advantages over traditional absorbing electrochromics for radiant energy control because of their large dynamic range in both transmission and reflection for visible light and infrared radiation.
07/28/2010
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Lean Flame Stabilization Ring
Robert Cheng at Berkeley National Laboratory has developed a means for retrofitting existing burners to burn lean, premixed natural gas/air mixtures to reduce NOx emissions without sacrificing efficiency and burner design simplicity.
07/28/2010
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Rooftop Diagnostician

The Rooftop Diagnostician provides fast and effective diagnostics for heating, ventilation and air conditioning units in commercial buildings, allowing you to better monitor the HVAC system to provide optimal performance.

07/02/2010
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EnergyPlus: Energy Simulation Software for Buildings
EnergyPlus is a building energy simulation program for modeling building heating, cooling, lighting, ventilating, and other energy flows. While it is based on the most popular features and capabilities of BLAST and DOE-2, it includes many innovative simulation capabilities such as time steps of less than an hour, modular systems and plant integrated with heat balance-based zone simulation, multizone air flow, thermal comfort, and photovoltaic systems.
06/24/2010
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Energy Efficient Laboratory Fume Hood
Fume hoods, used to protect the user from breathing harmful chemical vapors, consume large amounts of energy, estimated to be 1GW in California alone. This power load comes from the fan power need to move air out the hood, and to condition make-up air.
06/24/2010
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Energy Efficient Condensing Side-arm Gas Water Heater
James Lutz of Berkeley Lab has invented a gas water heater that promises to be up to thirty percent more efficient than conventional gas water heaters.
06/24/2010
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Novel Electrochromic Device Controlled by Sunlight
Frank McLarnon and Robert Kostecki at Berkeley Lab have designed a two-component electrode, fabricated with titanium and nickel oxides, reacts to both light and electricity.
06/24/2010
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Clog-free Atomizing and Spray Drying Nozzle
Duo Wang and Mark Modera have designed an atomizing nozzle that eliminates clogging. The Berkeley Lab nozzle uses the high velocity gas efflux to create a layer of ambient temperature air around the tube containing the liquid to be atomized. This feature minimizes heat transfer from the gas to the liquid, thus eliminating premature drying. Several other design features also help to eliminate clogs.
06/24/2010
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Aerosol Remote Sealing System
Mark Modera and Francois Remi Carrie from Berkeley National Laboratory have developed a rapid, economical technique to seal duct and other enclosed systems by means of an internally injected aerosol.
06/24/2010
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Novel Structured LED and OLED Devices
A Berkeley Lab researcher has invented new LED and OLED devices and fabrication techniques that can lead to improved device efficiencies. For LED devices, the invention permits significant reduction of defects in semiconductors, in particular for wide band-gap light-emitting materials. For OLED devices, the invention enables confined current flow in the device and significantly increases light out-coupling from the light emitting layer. For both LED and OLED devices, the invention provides... read more
06/23/2010
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Transpired Solar Collector
Unglazed solar collectors have been used in the past for preheating ventilation air for a building. These solar collectors typically include a dark absorber panel, positioned to face the sun, and a plenum or air collection space into which the heated air is drawn through perforations or holes in the absorber panel. The movement of air is often aided by fans or some source of suction to draw the air into the plenum and distribute it throughout the building. It was believed that absorbers had... read more
02/02/2010