Presented by Sarah Widder and Nate Baker
As COVID-19 and its physical and economic impacts reshape new and existing industrial and commercial systems, operators are looking at how to most efficiently run existing commercial and industrial spaces that may be used very differently in the future.
While adding variable speed capability in commercial buildings is not a new idea, a new analysis confirms major energy and cost savings is available by pairing those products with a power drive system (PDS) – regardless of a pump’s load variability. A PDS combines an electric motor, adjustable speed controls and sensors that provide feedback to the equipment, allowing the equipment to slow down or speed up to meet current demand. This idea and the added flexibility a PDS can provide may be even more important as we move forward in uncertain times.
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Sarah Widder is currently a director at Cadeo, an energy efficiency consulting firm that works with utilities, non-profits, industry and regulatory agencies to promote adoption of energy-saving technologies and practices in the marketplace. In her current role, Sarah has been working with the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance and other trade associations to develop market transformation programs for motor driven equipment under NEEA’s Extended Motor Products (XMP) Initiative. Sarah started working on motor-driven technology in her previous job at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, where she supported test procedure development for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and led development of a new test procedure and efficiency metric for pumps, the Pump Energy Index (PEI). Sarah has a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Washington and a PhD in Civil Engineering from Washington State University.
As a senior associate and member of Cadeo's engineering team, Nate Baker leverages his background in industrial facilities to support energy efficiency program design and regulatory review. Most recently, his work has focused on supporting efforts to increase energy efficiency in motor-driven equipment and adoption of energy efficient technology in commercial and industrial applications broadly. His research has supported program development by establishing unit energy savings estimates for pumps and fans and documenting operational characteristics of clean water pumps. Nate also provides technical expertise to support the development of energy conservation standards and test procedures.