Energy projects (FY2011)

In FY2011, the Energy Task Force implemented the following efficiency and conservation projects:

Boiler O2 Combustion Controls: The main steam plant measures the oxygen content of exhaust and regulates how much air gets added to maintain better combustion. This is because if too much air is added the system uses extra fuel to heat the excess air, which wastes energy. The combustion controls measure and adjust oxygen levels to make them as efficient as possible, which translates to big savings.

Boiler Room Relighting: Replaced boiler room lights with CFLs, for a longer life and more efficient energy use.

Gray Cage Lighting: It used to be that the lights in Gray Cage could only be switched on by going through a locked door, to which only one custodian had a key. This meant that the lights were left on almost constantly because of the added hassle. The task force installed motion sensors to light Gray Cage when necessary, and turn off lights when no one is there.

LED Exit Signs: The taskforce replaced 30 of the “Exit” signs on campus with LED lights. This is an on-going project.

Lighting in Third Floor Ladd: The lighting underneath the windows in Ladd library used to be constantly on, even in the daytime when they were completely unnecessary. The taskforce installed daylight sensors to keep the lights from turning on unnecessarily.

Re-Lighting Ladd: 12,000 lights in Ladd library were replaced with high efficiency CFLs. Efficiency Maine rebated Bates $19,000 for the replacements.

Reduction in Domestic Water Temperature: Since dormitories use a lot of hot water, buildings can sometimes run out quickly. Previously, water would be stored at an exceptionally high temperature. In case it ran low, it could be mixed with cold water to create regular temperature water. However, this system requires a lot of energy to idle at high temperature, which is unnecessary for the majority of the time. The taskforce limited the domestic temperatures to 120°F to prevent waste from idling.

Refrigerator Replacement: The taskforce found 6 vintage refrigerators bought in the 1980s in Moulton House, Small House, Frye House, Clason House, Herrick House, and Rand, and replaced them with new, high-efficiency refrigerators.

Steam Controller in Alumni Gym: The radiators in alumni gym previously were all on one system, so that one radiator could turn on independently of all the others. The taskforce installed a steam controller to regulate individual radiators, and prevent wasteful, unnecessary heating of unoccupied parts of the gym.