Technology Assessments

In the News: Green Proving Ground Selects Six Innovative Technologies that Enable Transition to Net-Zero Carbon

The GPG program, in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Energy, has selected six innovative building technologies for evaluation in GSA facilities. The American-made technologies were chosen in response to GSA’s most recent Request for Information seeking technologies for net-zero carbon buildings. The evaluations are intended to validate the technical and operational characteristics of the technologies and their potential for future deployment.

C02-Based Heat Pump, Dalrada (Escondido, CA)

Decarbonizing heating is key to achieving Net-Zero. This combustion-free heat pump promises to increase heating and cooling efficiency by capturing and reusing thermal energy while reducing global warming potential. Using carbon dioxide as the refrigerant, this heat pump can deliver cooling down to -22°F and heating up to 250°F.

Solar PV Tracking, Rocking Solar (Monroe, OH)

According to DOE, commercial buildings consume 35% of the electricity in the U.S. This single-axis solar tracker promises to increase commercial rooftop solar photovoltaic production by adapting a proven utility tracking technology with a new low-profile rocker design that reduces friction, motor size, and the cost of sun-tracking.

Non-Metalized Window Film, 3M (St. Paul, MN) and NGS (Atlanta, GA)

Windows are the weakest energy-efficiency link in the building envelope, but replacing them can be cost-prohibitive. This non-metalized window film promises to increase window thermal performance with increased durability, reduced reflectivity, and no cell signal interference. The exterior version is expected to effectively block heat transmission, making it an efficient option even on coated or dual-pane tinted glass. The interior version incorporates additional technology that meets current GSA standards for blast resistance.

Additive that Increases Heat Transfer, Endo Enterprises/Pace49 (Bellingham, WA)

Closed-loop heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems rely on water to transfer heat energy throughout a building. This hydronic additive promises to improve the heat transfer properties of water to reduce energy use in closed-loop HVAC systems.

Selections include GPG’s first electric vehicle supply equipment technologies

The program also selected two technologies aimed at unlocking the value of electric vehicle batteries to not only power vehicles, but to interact dynamically with a building’s electric load and the local electric grid. The resulting assessment of these new technologies will refine GSA’s understanding of the requirements needed to support an all-electric fleet. The technologies will be tested at demonstration projects, called Applied Innovation Learning Laboratories, at GSA-controlled facilities across the country. At these sites, GSA will work with federal partners, industry, and local utilities to test new technologies that will support an all-electric fleet.

EV Charge Management, WeaveGrid (San Francisco, CA)

The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to electrifying the 450,000 vehicles in the federal fleet. This EV charge management solution supports that goal by integrating embedded vehicle telematics with utility signals to optimize charging based on vehicle use, utility rates, and the carbon content of delivered power.

Bi-directional EV Charging, Fermata Energy (Charlottesville, VA)

Bi-directional EV charging can be used to stabilize the grid by strategically using EVs to either power local building loads or send energy back to the grid. This vehicle-to-everything (V2X) technology is expected to turn EVs into energy storage assets, increasing resilience and lowering the cost of EV ownership.

Ongoing assessments

Building envelope

Automated Air Sealing [PDF - 183 KB] seals the building envelope by pressurizing it and then distributing an atomized non-toxic water-based sealant that is automatically drawn to leaks.

Snap-on Window Insulation Panel [PDF - 186 KB] improves the thermal performance of windows, while maintaining window transparency and operability.

Energy management

Connected Building Operating System [PDF - 189 KB] increases building efficiency based on factors such as occupancy patterns, weather conditions, and real-time electricity consumption.

Grid-Interactive Efficient Buildings (GEBs) [PDF - 191 KB] deliver cost savings by leveraging technologies and strategies that provide continuous demand management and load flexibility. GPG is evaluating four different GEB solutions.

Wireless Sensors and Analytics [PDF - 217 KB] tests the promise of the Internet of Things (IoT) by using relatively inexpensive and easy-to-install wireless, lighting-fixture-based sensors that detect and record changes in occupancy, temperature, visible light, infrared radiation, and LED power consumption.

HVAC

Coreless Axial Flux Motor [PDF - 187 KB] replaces the copper wire and laminated iron core found in conventional motors with a printed circuit board stator, making the motor smaller, lighter and more efficient.

HVAC Pretreatment Dehumidification [PDF - 184 KB] controls the building’s humidity level by treating outside air before it enters the HVAC system.

Nanofiber Air Filter [PDF - 187 KB] improves filtration effectiveness, while simultaneously improving energy efficiency by lowering airflow restriction.

On-site power and renewables

DC Microgrid [PDF - 189 KB] connects on-site energy generation and storage devices to direct current (DC) loads, eliminating conversion losses and optimizing the efficiency of on-site power.

Water

Blowdown Recovery System [PDF - 187 KB] captures and purifies a percentage of cooling tower water that is otherwise flushed in order to minimize mineral build-up.

Catalyst-Based Scale Prevention for Cooling Towers [PDF - 186 KB] alters the chemistry of hard water to prevent calcite buildup.

The GPG program enables GSA to make sound investment decisions in next-generation building technologies based on their real-world performance.

Last Reviewed: 2022-05-16