WVU NRCCE receives $733,000 DOE grant

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April 09, 2009 by NRCCE News

Morgantown, W.Va. — Industries of the Future-WV Creates Energy Efficiency Partnership to Help Regional Industries in WV, PA, OH

Industries of the Future-West Virginia (IOF-WV) of the West Virginia University National Research Center for Coal and Energy recently formed an energy efficiency partnership that is the recipient of a three-year grant for $733,000 from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Industrial Technologies Program (ITP).

“Energy efficiency can result in a significant cost reduction for businesses and the possibility of additional job creation in the region,” said Dr. Bhaskaran Gopalakrishnan, the principal investigator of the project. Gopalakishnan, a WVU Industrial Engineering professor, is the director of the WVU Industrial Assessment Center (IAC) and is the IOF-WV Energy Efficiency Research Fellow.

Project team partners include IOF-WV, the IAC, Energy and Environmental Efficiency Management Inc. of North Potomac, MD, and the North Hampton Community College Energy Management Institute of Bethlehem, PA who will work with regional industries to save energy. The team will work with industries in West Virginia, western Pennsylvania, and eastern Ohio.

“With this funding, we’ll help companies create a strategy to achieve up to a 25 pecent energy intensity reduction in 10 years. We’ll do this by conducting energy assessments and then developing individualized industrial energy efficiency technology delivery services and programs,” said Gopalakrishnan.

“As many as 40 assessments a year are possible at varying levels of complexity to address the needs of the clients,” said Gopalakrishnan. “Some will be as simple as a phone consultation. Others will be more complex energy assessments and strategies that will work toward the 25 percent energy intensity reduction goal.”

“This project also lays the groundwork for the development of effective energy assessment processes, an energy efficiency knowledge center and subsequently a model for business entrepreneurs,” he added.

Companies and other organizations participating at the current time are:

  • American Municipal Power, Columbus, OH
  • HK Engine Components, LLC, Weston, WV
  • Fireline TCON, Inc., Youngstown, OH
  • Titan Tire Corporation, Bryan, OH
  • WV Manufacturers Association, Charleston, WV

Additional companies will be added as the project proceeds through the it’s marketing and outreach component.

“We will be advertising the energy efficiency audits and technical resources at six regional workshops, a series of local and statewide presentations, on-site visits, and the project website,” said Kathleen Cullen, IOF-WV program coordinator. “We’ll be showcasing our success stories in an electronic newsletter that will be distributed to over 2,000 industrial contacts and providing ongoing information to media outlets and state and local publications.”

The IOF-WV partnership project was one of 12 applicants to be awarded grant money totaling $9 million from the U.S. Department of Energy. IOF-WV submitted the proposal through the WV Division of Energy.

“Because we were one of 12 projects chosen, we expect national coverage by the DOE’s Save Energy Now and the Industrial Technologies Program,” Cullen said.

The grant was awarded through a federal competitive process and builds on the success of ITP’s Save Energy Now initiative. Applicants were chosen based on their efforts to find industrial facilities that can achieve energy intensity reduction of a least 2.5 to 3 percent annually over 10 years.

The DOE provided $733,000 of grant funding for the project with the NRCCE adding $225,000 in cost sharing, giving a project total of $958,000.

For more information on the program, businesses can contact, Kathleen Cullen, IOF-WV program coordinator, at 304-293-2867 x5426 or go to the website at www.iofwv.nrcce.wvu.edu.

IOF-WV is West Virginia’s industrial energy efficiency program under a partnership between the West Virginia Division of Energy and the WVU National Research Center for Coal and Energy. The goal of IOF-WV is to assess high priority research needs and develop projects that improve energy efficiency and environmental performance of manufacturers.

Since 1997 when IOF-WV was established as the first state-level IOF program , IOF-WV teams have obtained $23,731,956 in competitively awarded federal and state funding and $10,898,443 in non-federal cost share for a cumulative R&D value to the state of $34,630,399.

IOF-WV:

  • Is a Save Energy Now program partner with the U.S. Department of Energy
  • Engages University research groups in innovative partnership projects to improve energy efficiency and environmental sustainability of manufacturers
  • Conducts energy assessments, in partnership with the WVU Industrial Assessment Center, that maximize energy efficiency, reduce waste and improve productivity
  • Provides technical assistance and information on energy efficiency vendors to companies implementing energy savings recommendations
  • Conducts innovative faculty-developed training programs and sponsors U.S. DOE Best Practices workshops on system-wide and component-specific topics to teach employees how to run plants more efficiently
  • Provides information to industry about energy efficiency through annual symposia, project meetings, websites, and the monthly newsletter, IOF-WV UpDate.

Press Release Contact: Kathleen Cullen, Industries of the Future-WV
Kathleen.Cullen@mail.wvu.edu (e-mail), (304) 293-2867 x5426 (office phone)

NRCCE