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Wood Stove Competition Showcases Innovation

Rebecca Trojanowski

A team led by Brookhaven Lab's Rebecca Trojanowski was responsible for measuring each stove's efficiency and particulate emissions. Photo courtesy Ray Albrecht.

A team from Brookhaven’s Energy Conversion Group in the Sustainable Energy Technologies Department recently played a key role in a four-day competition to identify the world’s most efficient and innovative wood stove designs. The Wood Stove Decathlon, sponsored by the Alliance for Green Heat, was held on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., November 15-18, putting stoves from 12 competitors from around the World to the test.

Members of the Brookhaven team tested field analyzers prior to the Decathlon to ensure the results would be accurate; measured each competitor’s stove for efficiency and particulate emissions; and served on the panel of judges. Brookhaven’s Energy Conversion Group Leader Tom Butcher said that from his perspective the most exciting innovation being applied involves advanced controls and sensors. “Oxygen sensors, temperature sensors, sensors used to control the position of dampers and speeds of fans will optimize the combustion throughout the entire process,” he said.

The 12 stoves in the competition were selected from a much larger group of applicants following a review of the technologies and their degree of innovation. The selection of the winner was based on multiple criteria such as user interface, serviceability, and cost, with the key goals being efficiency and emissions reduction. First prize was awarded to Woodstock Soapstone, a New Hampshire company, for its hybrid stove which combines two-stage combustion and an emission catalyst.

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2014-4594  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office

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Ninth Brookhaven Building Receives LEED Certification


The Interdisciplinary Science Building (ISB) for energy research at Brookhaven Lab was awarded Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification for its energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable design, construction, and operations.

The Interdisciplinary Science Building (ISB), the newest facility to open at Brookhaven Lab, was recently awarded a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold rating by the U.S. Green Building Council. The ISB achieved this rating for its energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable design, construction, and operations. The ISB is one of nine buildings at Brookhaven Lab to receive LEED certification.

"Constructing facilities like the Interdisciplinary Science Building to meet LEED certification standards and renovating older buildings on site are part of the Laboratory's long-term plans to provide scientists with modern, world-class research facilities while respecting the environment, meeting sustainability goals, and reducing energy costs," said Lanny Bates, Assistant Laboratory Director for Facilities and   Operations.

The ISB building, which opened in April 2013, contains four specialized labs with unique features for safely assembling and testing new lithium-ion batteries, exploring materials' electronic structure at the atomic scale, and fabricating new materials one atomic layer at a time. The building also features offices and 60 standard laboratories.

Learn more about the ISB certification:

2014-4595  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office

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Innovative Agreement to Help BNL Reduce Energy Use

aerial of BNL

The contract will enable the Lab to upgrade lighting systems in 17 buildings, replace and enhance energy management controls in nine buildings, and install a new high-efficiency water chiller at the Lab's Central Chilled Water Facility.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and National Grid recently signed a Utility Energy Service Contract (UESC) for infrastructure upgrades that are designed to substantially reduce the Lab's energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions. Under the UESC, National Grid will facilitate third-party financing for DOE in the amount of $12.2 million to implement lighting and other energy efficiency upgrades at the Laboratory. The loan will be repaid using the savings generated by the upgrades, which are expected to total more than $1.3 million each year. 

"This contract is a win-win for the Laboratory and for DOE, as it will reduce the Laboratory's energy costs and also help us meet DOE and federal energy and greenhouse gas reduction goals," said Lanny Bates, Assistant Laboratory Director for Facilities and Operations. "It will allow us to leverage our operating funds to reinvest in much-needed infrastructure improvements, many of which would have been delayed or not funded at all without this type of arrangement in place." 

UESCs are one of DOE's contract vehicles for implementing energy conservation and cost-savings projects at government facilities. It will enable the Laboratory to upgrade lighting systems in 17 buildings, replace and enhance energy management controls in 9 buildings, and install a new high efficiency 1,250-ton water chiller and related components at the Central Chilled Water Facility, which provides cooling water for lab processes and buildings. 

The lighting upgrades include installing new fixtures and retrofitting existing fixtures, replacing existing lamps and ballasts with more efficient ones, and installing occupancy sensors and timers. The upgrades are expected to reduce the Laboratory's annual “energy intensity” (energy use per square foot) by approximately 11 percent and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by over 7,000 metric tons. These savings combined with other sustainability efforts will help the Laboratory meet its 28 percent greenhouse gas reduction goal for 2020, as well as a 30-percent energy intensity reduction goal by 2015. 

2014-4596  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office

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  • Feb. 13 – Community Advisory Council meeting. 6:30 PM. Berkner Hall, Room B.

*Events listed above are free and open to the public. Visitors 16 and older must bring a photo ID for access to BNL events.

2014-4597  |  INT/EXT  |  Media & Communications Office