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Shaping Tomorrow's Built Environment Today
April 4, 2024
The absence of an atmosphere introduces a vacuum that nullifies traditional convection-based heat transfer. Faced with this and other challenges, the field of HVAC has responded with ingenuity. The endeavor to adapt climate control for extraterrestrial habitats underscores the indispensable role of HVAC systems—and the professionals behind them—in the quest for space colonization.  Read more
Purdue Innovation Uses Electric Fields, Electrode Configurations to Manipulate Flame Shape, Heat Release
Purdue University researchers have created a patent-pending method to dynamically manipulate a flame. The innovation could benefit companies that manufacture gas turbines for aircraft engines and electric power generation, appliances like home furnaces and water heaters and many types of industrial burners. Credit: Purdue.
As a flame changes shape by the millisecond, its heat release and stability are affected. This is important because the global energy supply is predominantly met by the combustion of fossil fuels, which also is the primary source of greenhouse gas emissions. Solutions to reduce emissions can worsen flame stability. Purdue University researchers have created patent-pending methods to dynamically manipulate a flame—from stable to oscillating to agitated—using electric fields and electrode configurations to control its heat release. Read more
For more than 100 years, engineers have used underground hot water or steam to generate electricity. Though the U.S. is the top geothermal electricity producer in the world, accounting for about four gigawatts last year, the total amount of geothermal electricity produced is tiny compared with other sources. Businesses and government researchers say there’s a lot more geothermal power to be had by pumping fluid through hot rock where there is no natural water. Texas has become an early hot spot for geothermal energy exploration. At least three companies are based in Houston, and scores of former oil industry workers and executives are taking their knowledge of geology, drilling and extraction to a new energy source. Read more
ASHRAE Journal
By Andrew J. Williamson, Associate Member ASHRAE; Khaled A. Sallam, Ph.D., Member ASHRAE
In this article, we quantify the effects of heat transfer between the compressor and the expander on the coefficient of performance (COP) of the conventional mechanical vapor compression cycles. Thermodynamic analysis revealed that using such a device can improve COP from a cycle that uses an isentropic compressor and an isentropic expander by as much as 20%. The improvement was significant in the case of natural refrigerants (e.g., CO2 and ammonia), with the potential of making them a more competitive option for future HVAC&R applications. Download here
ASHRAE’s Building Energy Quotient (EQ) program can take your building to the next step beyond benchmarking. Join the Green Building Initiative (GBI) and ASHRAE for a 60-minute live webinar to explore the Building EQ program features and requirements; this webinar is also available for registration in Spanish. Attendees will learn how commercial projects earn credit for Building EQ certification within GBI’s Green Globes, a comprehensive, science-based commercial building rating system that provides pathways for certain criteria for increased flexibility. This session will include a comparison of the Building EQ program to other energy performance benchmarking tools, demonstrate international acceptance, describe the benefits and outline key software features. Read more
In Case You Missed It
Organizers of the Paris Olympics are planning to use a water-cooling system under the Athletes Village—much like the one that has helped the Louvre cope with the sweltering heat that broke records last year—to keep temperatures in check for the Olympians and Paralympians who stay there. The decision is part of the organizing committee’s goal to cut the carbon footprint of the Paris Games by half and stage the most sustainable Olympics to date by installing a special technology that uses natural sources to keep everyone cool even during a potential heat wave. Read more
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