Low-GWP Mechanical Modules for Rapid Deployment Project (LG-MM)
The Team continues to focus on fabrication and testing of the lab and field units. A CPR meeting was conducted August 11, 2021..
The project develops a pre-fabricated central mechanical system module for retrofit applications. The mechanical module will include heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), domestic hot water, and real time energy use monitoring, control and feedback for multifamily buildings. The compact, lightweight, package will be designed to be mass produced offsite and installed quickly. All demonstration sites will be located in disadvantaged or low income communities. This agreement continues on research initiated in the EPC 17-040 grant, which identified a market gap for packaged mechanical systems in CA. The prototypes will re-tool and re-design commercially available equipment available in Sweden to accommodate the refrigerant to R32. The team will also replace the 40 gallon DHW storage tank 7 kWh of phase change material thermal energy storage which is expected to provide an equivalent volume of domestic hot water, but will occupy substantially less space than the existing tank.
The annual energy savings are estimated to reduce utility bills by $80-$155 per year per apartment. If all 6 million single family homes with natural gas space and water heating and 1.6 million apartments with natural gas space and water heating installed a system, it could result in an estimated $600 million or more savings in customer utility bill savings per year.
The conversion from natural gas to electric will reduce gas piping and infrastructure which could result in improved safety,as well as reduced risk of indoor air quality hazards.