Study: Hybrid systems for HVACs
The Energy Center of Wisconsin's report reveals that a hybrid HVAC system is more energy-efficient than a standard system, but is also more expensive.
The Energy Center of Wisconsin, with support from the U.S. Dept. of Energy and the University of Wisconsin Solar Energy Laboratory, spent more than a year working on hybrids and how they can save energy for HVAC systems. They found in their report that in the long term ground source heat pump (GSHP) as a hybrid is very cost-effective with an average rate of return of 10%. If they had fully invested in a GSHP without the hybrid, the return averaged about 3%.
However, going to a hybrid does have high initial costs, especially when you invest in a ground heat exchanger (GHX). Compared to the conventional HVAC system used now, it is more expensive, but not as expensive as a full investment in GSHP, according to the study by East Career and Technical Academy, a vocational high school in Las Vegas. The first cost savings were an estimated $1 million by going to a hybrid system.
Among the lessons learned from the study include cooling towers being at variable speed so they can shut off shortly after substantial cooling and boilers being placed downstream from a GHX and set 5 to 10 F cooler than the GHX temperature.
- Edited by Chris Vavra, Consulting-Specifying Engineer, www.csemag.com
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Annual Salary Survey
Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey