Mitsubishi Electric US, Inc. Cooling & Heating Division (Mitsubishi Electric), a leading manufacturer of Zoned Comfort Solutions™ and Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) cooling and heating systems, announces its involvement with several new U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) projects and initiatives through 2019. The DOE awarded $3.7 million for high performance housing projects through its Building AmericaSM program. The initiative selects project teams that focus on developing and implementing solutions to three interrelated core technical challenges: high-performance building envelope assemblies and systems; optimal comfort systems for heating, cooling, air distribution and humidity control; and high-performance ventilation systems and indoor air quality strategies.
Mitsubishi Electric is participating with the University of Central Florida’s (UCF) Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC) as one of six teams selected to develop and implement energy efficient solutions related to high-performance building envelopes, indoor air quality baselines and strategies, high-performance ventilation, and comfort systems for residential applications. UCF’s FSEC and Mitsubishi Electric will team up on two projects: one of the selected projects will refine a new approach to using mini-split heat pumps in existing homes and the second will conduct baseline studies to better characterize indoor air quality, ultimately leading to more energy efficient solutions.
With the new funding, UCF’s FSEC will focus on using a single, centrally located Mitsubishi Electric mini-split heat pump as the primary system, while only using the existing, lower-efficiency central system as needed. Previous FSEC research documented 34 percent average heating and cooling energy savings for Florida homes that use this innovative approach.
"The Building America Program employs applied research and expert teams to innovate and introduce new and cutting-edge technologies to market. Through our participation in this project and by teaming up with Mitsubishi Electric, we are optimistic that we can bring new solutions to homeowners and industry players that save energy and improve comfort,” says Eric Martin, program director, FSEC.
The Building America Program is also partnering with Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), Basalt, Colorado, as another award recipient. Mitsubishi Electric will be the HVAC equipment donor for the development of an advanced, compact micro-load integrated HVAC solution. The mini-split will contribute to the greater scope: “Experimental Envelope Fabrication Process for Integrated Zero Energy Ready Multifamily Renovations.”
“Mitsubishi Electric couldn’t be more proud to collaborate with the Building America Program,” says Eric Dubin, senior director of Utilities and Performance Construction, Mitsubishi Electric US, Inc. Cooling & Heating Division. “Teaming as an innovative industry leader and equipment donor with the DOE and other program participants will bring about new solutions, of which we are eager to continue to be at the forefront.”