Low-GWP Mechanical Modules for Rapid Deployment Project (LG-MM)

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Association for Energy Affordability

Recipient

Emeryville, CA

Recipient Location

9th

Senate District

15th

Assembly District

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$402,676

Amount Spent

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Active

Project Status

Project Update

The Team continues to focus on fabrication and testing of the lab and field units. A CPR meeting was conducted August 11, 2021..

The Issue

To reach California's building decarbonization goal, there is a strong need for innovative HVAC solutions in the retrofit market. Neither the CA market, nor the US market, currently have a fully packaged mechanical pod system that integrates space heating, cooling, domestic hot water, and ventilation with heat recovery. Although many overseas manufacturers produce combined systems that require less space, improved quality, and reduced renovation time, they are not exported to the U.S.A The demonstration and design modification of the overseas products can help the adoption of these solutions. and become commercially available.

Project Innovation

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.

Project Benefits

The project develops low GWP mechanical module prototypes, optimized for the most common multifamily building types in California. The system will show at a proof-of-concept level that these combined systems are well suited for the California market. This will serve as an example to American manufacturers, potential fabricators, and technology startups for the retrofit industry.

Lower Costs

Affordability

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.

Increase Safety

Safety

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.

Key Project Members

Project Member

Andrew Brooks

PI

Subrecipients

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Rocket

Emanant Systems, LLC

Rocket

Contact the Team

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