UF researchers win green energy stimulus funds
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — A University of Florida engineering researcher has received $1 million in federal stimulus funds for a research project aimed at developing small refrigeration systems powered by solar energy or waste heat.
Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Saeed Moghaddam’s project was among 43 green energy projects funded with $92 million in stimulus funds from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency.
Moghaddam said in an e-mail that the research is important in part because in capitalizes on “low quality” heat energy that cannot be converted into electricity efficiently. He said the solar- or waste-heat powered refrigeration systems use environmentally friendly refrigerants, such as water, and do not contribute to global warming. Current technologies can harness heat energy from solar sources with at least 50 percent efficiency, “far beyond the reach of photovoltaic cells,” Moghaddam said.
UF researchers will also contribute to a project headed by Virginia Tech that received $900,000 from the Department of Energy. That project is aimed at reducing the amount of electricity consumed by laptop computers.
- Aaron Hoover, firstname.lastname@example.org, 352-392-0186