FSEC IN THE NEWS
NEWS FROM AROUND THE WORLD
MESSAGE FROM THE DIRECTOR
|Dr. James Fenton
I want to share with you some comments I made
to our Policy Advisory Board at their meeting at the Center on
February 26. Philip Fairey and I put together a presentation
on what needs to be done to secure an energy-efficient and environmentally
safe future for Florida. I thought you would find these
ENERGY AWARD ANNOUNCED
The Walt Disney World Company's "Strive for Five" energy
reduction program has
been named the winner of the second annual Florida Energy Achievement
Award which is presented by FSEC to a company, organization or
individual that has made a significant achievement in the efficient
utilization of energy, energy conservation, energy education
or renewable energy in the state of Florida.
For complete details on the award, visit www.fsec.ucf.edu/en/media/enews/2007/2007-03_EnergyAward.htm.
Assistance to Homes Featured at International Builders' Show
Manufactured home that was exhibited
at the International Builders' Show Photo:David
Among the highlights of this year’s National Association
of Home Builders’ International Building Show in Orlando
in February were some high-performance homes that attracted a
lot of attention for their energy-saving construction and features.
The work of a number of center researchers helped with the design
and planning of these homes as well as the information given
to interested attendees. With more than 100,000 builders
and others in the construction industry attending the show, FSEC’S
efforts helped make these homes a big success.
Lab Equipment Paves the Way for Expanded Research
|Researcher Darlene Slattery using the new
One of the Center’s fastest-growing
and most popular research programs is the hydrogen and fuel cell
area, topics that are in the news often for their promise in
providing power for both our transportation energy needs and
for our homes and other buildings.
A growing research program has enabled FSEC
to buy some specialized new equipment that will assist researchers
with better and quicker results.
Forms the Backbone of Research Projects
You may have seen the recent technical report
on the novel “NightCool” cooling concept assessment
in scale test buildings written by Danny Parker and John Sherwin.
It gives the results of an interesting research project carried
out at FSEC which is demonstrating a 20 percent or greater reduction
in space cooling loads than previously achievable with the very
best existing building and equipment technologies. One thing
that stands out is the rigor and precision of the research that
allows for such detailed testing.
High School Science Bowl Held at FSEC in March
Fourteen student teams from schools throughout
the state participated in the 2007 Southeast Regional Science
Bowl competition at FSEC on March 3. This year’s winners
were: first place: Miami Palmetto Senior High School; second
place: Brevard Schools Collaborative, and third place: Durant
High School from Hillsborough County.
Vacant Home Space Conditioning Strategies on Summer Relative
Energy and Peak Load
About 900,000 retiree "snowbirds" make
Florida their winter destination to escape the northern cold.
This pattern of seasonal occupancy creates a need for space
conditioning guidelines for vacant homes to avoid mold problems
while minimizing both customer energy usage and electrical
load during utility peak hours.
The Vacant Home Space Conditioning Study
was sponsored by Florida Power & Light (FPL) as part of its Conservation R&D Program
and carried out by FSEC beginning in 2004. Three homes
in Brevard County were equipped with monitoring equipment for
the experiments: a 45-year-old, 1,100-square-foot single-story,
painted concrete block home on a concrete slab with a low pitch
tar and gravel roof; a 40-year-old 1,950-square-foot split-level
home with block and frame construction, and a 900-square-foot
single-wide mobile home manufactured in 1984.
All three test-homes had 2.5-ton central
air conditioning (AC) systems with heat pump, gas, and electric
strip heating, respectively. Five space conditioning strategies
for vacant homes were assessed during hot, humid summer conditions
and/or warm, humid fall weather conditions, to control relative
humidity (RH), minimize energy use, and limit peak electrical
- no space conditioning as the baseline
- AC thermostat set at 85oF or 83oF
- morning AC operation at 74oF
- dehumidifier alone, and
- space heating.
An important observation was that some homes require more aggressive
action to control RH than others. Air infiltration was found
to be an important factor in the struggle against high indoor
RH. Air infiltration, usually measured in air changes per hour,
is the rate at which outside air enters the house. Homes that
have higher infiltration rates require greater moisture removal
rates to achieve RH control.
Click here (2.2
MB PDF) to read the complete paper.