Jenny Wells

UK Opens Renewable Energy and Energy Storage Research Building

Published: Aug 16, 2012

See video

Video by UK Research Communications

 

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 16, 2012) — Energy research became more energy efficient as the University of Kentucky opened its newest energy research building yesterday ― a living laboratory devoted to renewable energy and energy storage. The $20.8 million laboratory building will allow UK to expand research devoted to Kentucky's growing renewable energy industries, including biomass and biofuels, electrochemical power sources (like capacitors and batteries), and distributed solar energy technologies.

 

The 43,000-square-foot building is part of the UK Center for Applied Energy Research, located off Iron Works Pike in northern Fayette County.

 

"It makes good sense for all buildings―not just those devoted to energy research―to be as energy-efficient as possible," Gov. Steve Beshear said. "Smart energy usage in buildings saves money and resources.  Most importantly, the people inside this building are performing critical work in advanced energy research.  Their efforts will undoubtedly impact Kentucky's future in energy innovation."

 

His remarks were echoed by Stella Fiotes, chief facilities management officer of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), which provided the majority of funding. "We're excited to see this new laboratory open and begin hosting research into renewable energy and energy storage. This work will complement NIST's measurement research in support of clean technologies and energy efficiency."

 

The building itself is the star of the show. According to CAER director Rodney Andrews, "Our target was at least a 50 percent reduction in energy usage compared to similar facilities. The final percentage is 54. It is targeted to be LEED gold certified."

 

The energy reduction is accomplished by energy-saving features throughout the building, including an exterior and roof with twice the amount of insulation normally used. Windows contain a nanogel material that diffuses sunlight and provides the same insulation as brick walls. Among other features are geothermal heating and cooling, occupancy sensors that turn off lights automatically when a space isn't being used, and a ventilation system that recaptures energy.

 

The facility was funded by a competitive grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce's National Institute of Standards and Technology under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act's (ARRA) NIST Construction Grant Program. The award consisted of $11.8 million in federal funds, with matching resources of $3.5 million provided by the Commonwealth of Kentucky and $1.9 million from UK. An additional award of $3.5 million in state ARRA funds was provided by the Department of Energy to achieve LEED certification and insure that this new laboratory is a model for energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies.

 

This funding has enabled UK to develop unique labs including a dry room designed for battery manufacturing and testing, an open-access biofuels research lab, and state-of-the-art solar research facilities. The entire second floor is devoted to research performed by UK Department of Chemistry Professor John Anthony's group, whose work includes organic thin-film transistors (for flexible flat-panel displays), organic solar cells (for low-cost electricity generation) and organic light-emitting diodes (for high-efficiency lighting).

 

"For nearly 150 years, the University of Kentucky has been an engine for growth in the Commonwealth of Kentucky―transforming lives through education, research and service," said UK President Eli Capilouto. "Today we are taking another major step forward in advancing our century-and-a-half old promise. The research and creative discoveries developed by our world-class engineers at UK's Center for Applied Energy Research and in the cutting-edge laboratories in this new facility will bolster an essential industry and energize our Commonwealth's economy."  

 

"Partnering with states and local communities to advance America’s clean energy economy is a critical part of delivering on President Obama's all-of-the-above energy strategy," said Energy Secretary Steven Chu. "The Energy Department’s investments in the Center for Applied Energy Research are helping the University of Kentucky to pursue important innovations across a range of renewable energy and clean energy technologies, while at the same time saving the university money on their utility bills."

 

In addition to housing non-fossil fuel research, the building is home to the Kentucky-Argonne Battery Manufacturing Research & Development Center laboratories, jointly affiliated with the Commonwealth of Kentucky, the Argonne National Laboratory in Chicago, the University of Kentucky, and the University of Louisville. This is a shared-use facility, with portions of the laboratory purposely designed and specially equipped to accommodate capacitor and battery manufacturing research and development.

 

 

MEDIA CONTACT: Jenny Wells, (859) 257-5343; Jenny.Wells@uky.edu

lab.jpgbuilding.jpgimg_1102.jpgcapilouto.jpgimg_1119.jpgimg_1106.jpgimg_1093.jpgimg_1110.jpgspeakers.jpglab3.jpglab2.jpgbruzek.jpgtour.jpg
November
 
 
 
 
 
 
1
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
College of Pharmacy Open House
Iron Pour
UK Women's Choir 20th Anniversary Concert
Adventure Hiking & Rappelling @ Red River Gorge
Pickin' Time Mountain Music and Harvest Day
Purposeful Retirement: Planning Your Next Stage of Life
Diwali Dhoom 2014
Sat
2
UK Percussion Ensemble
Day Hike
Curator Tour: Take My Word For It
Sun
3
Industry Career Week: Resumes and Cover Letters
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Morehead State
Mon
4
Industry Career Week: How to Impress Your Boss in 90 Days
Rock Star Professionalism Series
UK Lab Band
Tue
5
Industry Career Week: Networking and Job Search
Social Enterprise and Innovation / Certified Nonprofit Professional Program Informational Meeting
Circle of Love Name Distribution
Appalachian Forum with Dr. Fran Ansley
Dana Harper Gallery Reception
Wed
6
Career Assessment Workshop
LNFS Presents: Zona Sur
LNFS Presents: The Grand Budapest Hotel
UK Jazz Ensemble
Circle of Love Name Distribution
Abstract Workshop
Lauren Potter
Thu
7
LNFS Presents: V for Vendetta
Last Day to Withdraw or Reduce Course Load
Circle of Love Name Distribution
R.C. May Photography Lecture Series: Marvin Heiferman
Men's Soccer vs. Charlotte
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Georgia
Free Friday Evening Swing Dance
Fri
8
Kentucky Football vs. Georgia
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
The Power of Poetry
The Lexington Lowdown and Free Lindy Hop Workshop
Swing Dance Featuring Live music by"The Metrognomes Orchestra"
Sat
9
UK Combos Concert
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Missouri
Sun
10
Circle of Love Name Distribution
Mon
11
UK Sax Ensembles
Job Club - Interviewing Strategies
Undergraduate Research Information Session
Jose Abisambra Presentation on Current Alzheimer's Research
Women of the World: Judy Smith
Tue
12
Internship Info Session
LNFS Presents: Reservoir Dogs
Refugee Life in America
#UKEDTALKS: International Opportunities for Education Majors
Leadership Assessment
Wed
13
Career Assessment Workshop
LNFS Presents: Iron Man 3
Chili and Pie Cook-Off Supper
#TrendingTopics: Vegetarians vs. Meat-Eaters
Campus Polar Plunge to benefit Special Olympics KY
LNFS Presents: La Demora
Thu
14
LNFS Presents: Pretty in Pink
LNFS Presents: Mean Girls
Fri
15
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Sat
16
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Florida
Greek Cinematography: Critical Approach and Discussion
"Storied Streets" Documentary Showing about Experiences of Homelessness
Sun
17
The Vexillology (the study of maps) Contest
UK Rep Bands Concert
College of Agriculture, Food & Environment 2014 Celebration of Land-Grant Research
Amanda Rogers, "Black Flags, ISIS 'Swag' & Jihadi Rap: Marketing Militancy after the Arab Spring"
Stories of Homelessness: Panel Discussion
Mon
18
The Vexillology (the study of maps) Contest
A Positive Approach to Caregiving Conference
Education Abroad Open House
CatWatch Party
Appalachian Forum and Film Screening of "Up the Ridge"
Tue
19
The Vexillology (the study of maps) Contest
LNFS Presents: The Princess and the Frog
Pinterest Party
International Games Day
Global Design with Phil Duncan
Caregiver Support Group
OXFAM Social Issues Banquet
Wed
20
The Vexillology (the study of maps) Contest
Much Ado About Nothing
LNFS Presents: I Travel Because I Have To, I Come Back Because I Love You
LNFS Presents: The Big Lebowski
International Education Week Keynote Speaker: Christie Vilsack, Senior Advisor for International Education at USAID
Tobacco-free Tailgate 5 Year Anniversary
Bollywood Night
Thu
21
The Vexillology (the study of maps) Contest
Much Ado About Nothing
LNFS Presents: Water For Elephants
4th Annual Markesbery Symposium on Aging & Dementia
Freedom from Fear: On Black Childhood and Other Dangers
Bouldering @ Stone Fort
MEAT.
Fri
22
The Vexillology (the study of maps) Contest
Much Ado About Nothing
Bouldering @ Stone Fort
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Sat
23
The Vexillology (the study of maps) Contest
Much Ado About Nothing
Bouldering @ Stone Fort
UK Symphony Band and UK Concert Band
Sun
24
The Vexillology (the study of maps) Contest
Free Thanksgiving Shuttle to Blue Grass Airport
Mon
25
Free Thanksgiving Shuttle to Blue Grass Airport
Job Club - What is your money habitude?
Multicultural Student Thanksgiving Dinner
Tue
26
Thanksgiving - Academic Holidays
Free Thanksgiving Shuttle to Blue Grass Airport
Wed
27
Thanksgiving - Academic Holidays
Thu
28
Thanksgiving - Academic Holidays
Fri
29
Thanksgiving - Academic Holidays
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Arkansas
Sat
30
 
Sun
 
 
 
 
 
 
Reset Page