UNLVA Leader in Renewable Energy - Desert Research Institute

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					                        2010 Renewable Energy Inventory

       UNLV: A Leader in Renewable Energy




Introduction
The University of Nevada, Las Vegas is a leader among the state’s public entities
dedicated to advancing renewable energy in the region and beyond. UNLV’s outstanding
achievements in renewable energy research, its success in forging public/private
partnerships, and its excellent academic programs place the university at the forefront of
the field. Additionally, as the host site of the National Clean Energy Summit for the past
three years and other important international meetings, UNLV is now considered a
convening center for renewable energy leaders throughout the nation and world.

UNLV has acquired more than $99 million in research funding in the past decade on
wide-ranging subjects in the renewable energy area, including solar and geothermal
power; biofuels; photonics; nuclear energy, including recycling of nuclear waste; and
hydrogen production, storage, and use.* Additionally, UNLV has formed partnerships
with a variety of businesses and other public entities with the goal of accelerating the
deployment of renewable technologies, diversifying the regional economy, generating
jobs, analyzing policy, and coordinating financial and intellectual resources. UNLV is
also proposing a new Solar Solutions Center, which will establish UNLV as a national
center of excellence (a one-stop-shop) for solar energy deployment. The university’s
academic programs are geared toward educating the next generation of leaders in the
renewable energy field, and the campus itself exhibits tremendous dedication to the
support and use of renewable energy and sustainable practices.

Academic Programs
UNLV introduced a Solar and Renewable Energy minor in 2009, and the highly
successful program has enrolled 75 students. This interdisciplinary minor provides

*See the attached 2010 UNLV Renewable Energy Research Inventory for additional details. 
students from a variety of backgrounds with the opportunity to explore this field. The
minor degree program is available to all undergraduate students at UNLV through two
tracks – one in engineering and science, and another in policy. In addition, various co-
curricular activities are provided to further prepare students for careers in the solar and
renewable energy fields. UNLV has developed the minor program through an industry-
education partnership with NV Energy, which has provided a $500,000 donation to help
establish this program. The goal of the program is to position Nevada and UNLV as
leaders in the field of alternative energy through the support of excellent educational
programs that advance understanding of the field, build the state’s workforce, and
stimulate the state and local economy.

A new Graduate Certificate in Solar and Renewable Energy has recently been proposed
also. The goal of this certificate program is to provide a specialized qualification for
career professionals in the energy industry, professionals from other fields seeking entry
into the clean energy field, or currently enrolled graduate students seeking an added
specialization. The specialized graduate-level education provided will enable students to
assist Nevada, the western states and the U.S., more generally, in meeting the challenges
involved in advancing a new energy economy. It will also meet increasing demands for
highly skilled decision-makers and leaders with interdisciplinary training in solar and
renewable energy technologies and policies.

UNLV provides a wide-variety of courses in solar and renewable energy or related fields;
they are listed below. These courses are part of the curriculum of existing minor program
and/or the proposed graduate certificate program.

Course List

College of Business
BLW 331 - Real Estate Law I
BLW 435 - Construction Law
ECO 707 - Environmental & Natural Resource Economics

College of Fine Arts
AAE 330 - Design with Climate
AAE 435/635 - Developing Sustainable Design
ABS 332 - Developing Sustainable Design
ABS 443/643 - Interior Lighting Design

College of Liberal Arts
EPS 743 - Policy Formation: The Problem of Legitimacy
HIST 441/641 - American Environment History
HIST 443/643 - Comparative Environment History
PSC 320 - Public Policy Formation
PSC 321 - Analyzing Policy Issues
PSC 403A - Natural Resource Policy
PSC 403B - Energy Politics and Policy
PSC 403D - Global Environmental Politics
PSC 403Q - Global Ecopolitics
PSC 721 or EPS 747 - Seminar on the Public Policy Process
PSC 722 - Seminar on Environmental Resource Policy
NRES 411- Environmental Law and Policy
SOC 407/607 - Environment and Society (3 credits)

Greenspun College of Urban Affairs
ENV 101- Introduction to Environmental Science
ENV 1XX (proposed) - Introduction to Sustainable Design
ENV 206 - Introduction to Climate Change
ENV 407/SOC 407 - Environment and Society
ENV 411/611 - Environmental Risk Management
ENV 420 - Environmental Impact Analysis
ENV 460/660 - Environmental Modeling
ENV 480/680 - GIS for Environmental Management
ENV 650 (proposed) - Energy Policy & Management
ENV 470/670 (670 is proposed) - Energy Economics
ENV 794X - Restoration Ecology
ENV 703 - Environmental Law and Policy
ENV 711 - Risk Assessment and Risk Management
ENV 720 - Natural Resource Valuation
JOUR 450 - Media Technologies and Society
PAF 702 - Role of Government in Society
PUA 725 - Policy Analysis and Program Evaluation
PUA 756 - Policy Implementation

William F. Harrah College of Hotel Administration
HMD 395 – Facilities Management

Howard R. Hughes College of Engineering
CEE 413 - Water Resources Engineering
CEE 795 - Special Topics: Hydraulic Machinery
CEM 480/695 - Sustainable Construction
CEM4XX (proposed) - Building Design for LEED Certification
CEM 7XX (proposed) - Solar and Renewable Energy Capital Facility Projects
EE 290 - Fundamentals of Electrical Engineering
EE 320/L - Engineering Electronics
EE 340/L - Introduction to Electrical Power Engineering
EE 450/L - Solid State Devices
EE 451/651 - Electronic and Magnetic Materials and Devices
EE 452/652 - Introduction to Optical Electronics
EE 453/653 - Introduction to Nanotechnology
EE 495/695 - Photovoltaic Devices and Systems
EE 4XX (proposed) - Introduction to Renewable Energy
ECG 6XX (proposed) - Photovoltaic Devices and Systems
EE 442/ECG 642 - Power Electronics
ECG 740 - Computer Analysis Methods for Power Systems
ECG 741 - Electric Power Distribution System Engineering
ECG 742 - Power System Stability and Control
ECG 757 - Electron Transport Phenomena in Solid State Devices
EGG 150/450 - Introduction to Solar Energy Utilization I
ME 311 - Engineering Thermodynamics
ME 314/315 - Introduction to Heat Transfer
ME 315 - Thermal Energy Lab
ME 414/612 - Sizing Solar Energy Systems
ME 415/615 - Design of Thermal Systems
ME 418/618 - Air Conditioning Engineering Systems
ME 419/619 - Advanced HVAC and Energy Conservation Systems
MEG 705 - Conduction Heat Transfer
MEG 707 - Radiation Heat Transfer
MEG 711 - Advanced Thermodynamics
MEG 714 - Computational Aspects of Solar Energy
MEG 746 - Experimental Design and Analysis of Digital Process Control Systems
MEG 714 - Computational Aspects of Solar Energy

College of Sciences
CHEM 122 – General Chemistry
CHEM 241/L – Organic Chemistry I
CHEM 421/621 - Physical Chemistry I
CHEM 422/622 - Physical Chemistry II
CHEM 431/631 - Advanced Inorganic Chemistry
PHYS 181/L – Physics II – Electricity and Magnetism
PHYS 182/L - Physics III - Fluids, Thermodynamics and Optics
PHYS 461/661 – Light and Physical Optics
PHYS 462/662 – Modern Optics and Photonics
PHY 6XX (proposed) - Physics for Presidents and Leaders
GEOL 110 - Global Warming
GEOL 303 - Global Environmental Change
GEOL 4XX/6XX (proposed) - Geothermal Systems
GEOL 410/610 - Soil Classification and Resource Management
GEOL 430/630 - Geographic Information Systems (GIS): Theory and Applications
GEOL 446/646 - Geologic Application in Remote Sensing

Research

UNLV faculty, staff, and students are conducting research on a number of forms of clean
and renewable energy. As previously mentioned, the university has acquired more than
$99 million in research funding in the last decade for clean and renewable energy
projects. As indicated in the attached research inventory and the pie chart below, research
related to nuclear applications, such as radiochemistry, nuclear waste management,
nuclear reactor and fuel designs, and other related research, comprise a significant portion
of this funding. Building design, improvement of active and passive methods of energy
conservation, and solar energy production for buildings is a strong emphasis. Solar
energy research in other areas continues to grow as well, including solar cell materials;
concentrated solar designs and testing; smart metering; energy storage; and design
projects related to solar towers and fields. Federal funding for hydrogen research is
diminishing significantly, resulting in decreasing funding for UNLV projects related to
fuel cells and hydrogen storage. Biofuels research is growing in relation to new materials
for biofuels processing, as well as algae-based fuels. The remaining projects focus on
wind, water, lighting, and infrastructure research and development.

     UNLV Renewable Energy Research Funding by Area of Study, 2000-2010




Capital Projects/Institutional Practices
Below is a summary of sustainability-related activities and projects undertaken or being
planned by UNLV Facilities Management (FM) and UNLV Planning and Construction
(P&C).

UNLV’s Facilities Management has a long history of utilizing technology and improved
practices to make the campus as efficient as possible within the limitations of funding and
resources. In the 1980s, FM installed Energy Management Systems with the technology
that was available. In the 1990s newer technologies were added in multiple buildings on
the campus. More recently, even newer technologies and metering systems are
continually being installed to improve energy efficiency, and turf reduction projects are
being completed to improve water efficiency. All these efforts have resulted in not only
reduced energy and water costs, but also have significantly reduced the UNLV
greenhouse gas footprint.
UNLV Planning and Construction has instituted a variety of sustainability practices
relative to design and construction on campus. Recent updates include the development
the UNLV Design, Construction, and Sustainability Standards that include provisions for
USGBC LEED Silver Equivalency for major projects delivered by UNLV; the use of
Energy Star-rated products when feasible; coordination of specific, sustainability-related
activities (i.e., access to mass transit where feasible, coordination with recycling
programs); the use of water-efficient fixtures and landscaping; and other measures.

The following is a summary of recent accomplishments as well notable efforts that are in
progress.


ACCOMPLISHMENTS

ENERGY/RESOURCE EFFICIENCY – Recent Capital Projects

•   Greenspun Hall received a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)
    Gold Certification rating with a photovoltaic array as part of a shade canopy structure
    being a significant feature. The following environmentally sustainable features were
    also incorporated into the design and construction of the building:

       Energy and Atmosphere
          o A photovoltaic (PV) array harnesses solar energy and offsets up to 30
             percent of regulated energy consumption and 13 percent of the building’s
             total estimated energy consumption.
          o A chilled beam heating and cooling system was designed to reduce energy
             consumption in the building while still providing thermal comfort.
          o Light sensors automatically turn off lights when classrooms and offices
             are not in use.
          o Daylighting and natural and artificial lighting management systems are
             integrated into the building and its operation and control systems.

       Water Efficiency
         o Low-flow water fixtures in Greenspun Hall use more than 30 percent less
             water than required by the Energy Policy Act of 1992.
         o Water-efficient landscaping reduces potable water usage by 50 percent
             over conventional irrigation measures.

       Sustainable Site Design
          o Bicycle storage, shower facilities, and changing rooms encourage the use
              of alternative transportation.
          o The building was located to be in close proximity to mass transit service.
          o Site and roofing materials reduce heat absorption and minimize heat island
              effects on surrounding areas.
          o Interior and exterior lighting releases zero direct-beam illumination,
              creating more environmentally friendly spaces.
       Materials and Resources
          o At least 20 percent of construction materials were manufactured within a
              500 mile radius, with 50 percent of those products harvested locally.
          o More than 75 percent of post-construction waste was diverted from
              landfills and recycled for other uses.
          o Approximately 50 percent of hardwood material used in the building was
              certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, which ensures the product
              was harvested from well-managed forests.
          o Dedicated space is provided for the storage and collection of recyclable
              materials.

       Indoor Environmental Quality
          o Carbon dioxide monitors placed throughout the building ensure indoor air
              quality.
          o Paints, adhesives, carpets, and composite wood used in the building have
              low amounts of volatile organic compounds.
          o The university has implemented a “green” housekeeping plan in the
              building that focuses on enhanced custodial training and the use of
              environmentally safe cleaning products.

•   The Science and Engineering Building received a LEED Silver Certification rating.
    The following environmentally sustainable features were incorporated into the design
    and construction of the building:

       Energy and Atmosphere
          o The energy performance of the building exceeds LEED minimum
             standards, and it was optimized to achieve a 20% savings over baseline
             building energy performance.
          o Light sensors automatically turn off lights when classrooms and offices
             are not in use.
          o Daylighting and natural and artificial lighting management systems are
             integrated into the building and its operation and control systems.
          o All base level HVAC and refrigeration equipment and fire suppression
             systems do not contain ozone depleting hydrochlorofluorocarbons
             (HCFCs) or halons.

       Water Efficiency
         o A grey water recovery system has been installed as a part of the project to
             feed grey water to toilets and urinals, resulting in an estimated savings in
             the use of potable water by 165,000 gallons per year. This reduces the
             wastewater generation of the building by over 55%.
         o A 30% reduction in water use for the building was achieved for both
             domestic and landscape water use.
      Sustainable Site Design
         o The EnergySmart roof reduces the heat island effect of the building.
             Ninety-two percent of the solar energy that strikes the roof is reflected
             away, reducing the amount of energy needed to cool the building.
         o Interior and exterior lighting practices significantly reduce light pollution
             from the site.
         o A storm water management plan is in place to reduce the amount of runoff
             that occurs from the building.
         o Bicycle storage and shower/changing facilities close to the building
             encourage the use of alternative transportation.
         o The building was located to be in close proximity to mass transit service.

      Materials and Resources
         o
         o Over 26% of the project’s materials are locally manufactured construction
             materials or locally harvested materials and products.
         o More than 60% of post-construction waste was diverted from landfills and
             recycled for other uses.
         o More than 13% of the building materials include some measure of
             recycled content.
         o Dedicated space is provided for the storage and collection of recyclable
             materials.

      Indoor Environmental Quality
         o A carbon dioxide monitoring program was implemented with the building
             mechanical and controls systems.
         o Paints, adhesives, carpets and composite wood used in the building have
             low amounts of volatile organic compounds.
         o A hazardous material management and disposal program has been
             designed as a part of the building facilities and operations.
         o The university has implemented a “green” housekeeping plan in the
             building that focuses on enhanced custodial training and the use of
             environmentally safe cleaning products.

ENERGY/RESOURCE EFFICIENCY – Facilities Campus-wide

  •   In 2009, UNLV received NV Energy Sure Bet program rebates for new
      construction for the use of a variety of electrical efficiency technologies at the
      Science and Engineering Building, Greenspun Hall, the Student Union, and the
      Student Recreation and Wellness Center. These rebates amounted to $103,988.
      The NV Energy Sure Bet program provides rebates for the following items, many
      of which UNLV implemented in the aforementioned facilities:

                     Occupancy sensors
                     High-performance window glazing
                     Variable speed drives
                     Building commissioning services
                   High-efficiency chillers
                   Daylight dimming systems
                   LEED certification goal and improvements over International
                   Energy Conservation Code 2003 specifications

•   UNLV completed the Tropicana Parking Garage in August 2009 for occupancy.
    The design and construction of the garage included building infrastructure that
    allows for the future installation of rooftop parking canopies and photovoltaic
    panels on these canopies, with electrical distribution infrastructure to support
    these items.

•   A private foundation is constructing the Mendenhall Center at the UNLV
    Maryland Campus, which is targeting LEED Silver equivalency.

•   UNLV replaced the Football Practice Field artificial turf and worked with the
    design-build contractor to recycle the existing artificial turf for secondary uses at
    parks and recreation areas in Nevada.

•   Planning/design work is complete by NSHE/UNLV and the State of Nevada
    Public Works Board to build the Advanced Clinical Training and Research Center
    at the Shadow Lane Campus. The plan is to design and build to LEED Silver
    equivalency. The State of Nevada Public Works Board received $380,000 in
    ARRA funds to retrofit lighting and select HVAC/controls system components at
    the Flora Dungan Humanities Building.

•   Lighting retrofits are being conducted in existing campus buildings for higher-
    efficiency lighting systems. Additionally, a new standard for lighting in campus
    buildings has been developed that eliminates incandescent lighting in favor of
    Compact Fluorescent Lights and LED lighting. FM has some test sites for LED
    fixtures.

•   Light sensors have been installed in new and existing facilities that automatically
    turn off lights in many classrooms and offices when they are not in use.

•   Carbon dioxide sensor and controls have been installed to reduce energy use and
    maintain air quality in several UNLV facilities.

•   Chiller retrofits are being conducted on campus to install higher-efficiency
    chillers.

•   Higher-efficiency motors are being installed in various types of equipment in
    campus facilities.

•   Hydronic HVAC equipment, where applicable, is being optimized to condition for
    a temperature differential as opposed to target flow rates.

•   Programmable thermostats are being retrofitted to allow for set point management
    of temperatures based on conditions and occupancy.
•   Facility controls are being reprogrammed to optimize HVAC compressor
    operation on rooftop split-system units.

•   Eight buildings were upgraded with new energy management systems, and there
    are more scheduled in 2010 and beyond. Such systems are being implemented in
    existing buildings on campus as appropriate.

•   Skylights were installed in the Architecture Building for natural lighting and
    energy reduction.

•   Boilers are being replaced with more efficient units as needed.

•   Temperature settings in buildings are being increased in the summer and reduced
    in the winter to reduce electrical and natural gas use.

WATER EFFICIENCY

•   About 138,000 square feet of turf was converted to desert landscaping in 2008
    with an estimated water savings of over 7.5 million gallons of water, and more
    conversion is scheduled for 2011 and beyond. The overall estimated annual water
    savings due to projects completed since 2000 is over 55.9 million gallons.

•   Low-flow water fixtures are installed in facilities when practical. These use 20-30
    percent less water than required by the Energy Policy Act of 1992.

•   A new water treatment contract is being solicited to obtain a more efficient water
    treatment system for boilers and cooling systems. This action should save water,
    extend the life of equipment, and improve efficiency.

POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

•   UNLV’s President has signed the American College and University Presidents
    Climate Commitment in August 2008. As part of this commitment, UNLV has
    developed a baseline greenhouse gas inventory and is now developing a Climate
    Action Plan. The Climate Action Plan is being developed by a group of Law
    students who were selected to partner with the National Association of
    Environmental Law Society in developing this plan.

•   Sustainability policies and procedures were developed and implemented in 2008
    and are ongoing. Emphasis was on energy efficiency, purchase, and use of only
    Energy Star products, and the LEED Silver equivalency program for new
    construction.

•   A greenhouse gas emissions tracking process is being implemented.

•   The university meets the federal requirement for alternative fuels by buying
    vehicles that use diesel or E85 fuel. Nearly all of UNLV maintenance fleet
    vehicles are electric: Out of a total of 201 vehicles, 147 are electric carts. Two are
    solar-powered carts; 21 are alternative fuel vehicles; and only 31 are traditionally
    fueled vehicles. Additionally, the university has some older propane/natural gas
    vehicles. The university also has several hybrid gas-electric vehicles.

•   Paints, adhesives, carpets, and composite wood used in buildings have low
    amounts of volatile organic compounds.

•   UNLV has implemented of a “green” housekeeping plan that focuses on enhanced
    custodial training and the use of environmentally safe cleaning products.

•   Last year, UNLV’s nationally recognized Rebel Recycling program recycled
    approximately 741 tons of material.

•   All major new building designs are to be built to LEED Silver equivalency, as
    practical and reasonable.

•   UNLV has purchased the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment, and Rating
    Systems software and is in the process of inputting required data for gauging
    progress toward sustainability.


OTHER ITEMS

•   The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada, with UNLV’s
    support, was awarded a $2.76 million grant from the Federal Transit
    Administration Section 5309 Bus Livability Initiative Program to construct a
    Transit Center and related improvements on the UNLV Maryland Campus. The
    goal of the project is to increase service and access to mass transit at UNLV.
    LEED Silver certification will be sought for the constructed facilities;
    photovoltaic panels are planned as a potential part of the design.

•   UNLV Parking and Transportation Services is a participant in the Club Ride
    carpool program administered through the Regional Transportation Commission
    of Southern Nevada (RTC). Club Ride allows individuals traveling to and from
    work to do so more economically by sharing rides with others of their choosing.
    Members can sign up online and find information on carpool and vanpool partner
    selection, transit, walking, biking.

•   In Spring 2010, UNLV formed a Sustainability Council that serves as an advisory
    group for various sustainability efforts related to campus, research, education, and
    community engagement. This group, which reports to UNLV’s President, is co-
    chaired by the Director of Sustainability and Multidisciplinary Research and the
    Sustainability Coordinator at UNLV.
NOTABLE SUCCESSES

  •   From FY 2002 to FY 2010, buildings maintained and supported by FM have
      realized an overall energy and cost avoidance of over 683,000 MMBTu’s and
      more than $14 million. These savings, which are being realized due to the
      aforementioned actions, are ongoing and will continue to grow with new
      projects/measures.

  •   From FY 2000 to FY 2010, buildings maintained and supported by FM have
      realized an overall water and cost avoidance of over 559,000 KGALs and more
      than $1,834,000. These savings, which are being realized due to the
      aforementioned actions, including turf reduction and water efficiency fixtures, are
      ongoing and will continue to grow with new projects/measures. In addition to
      these savings, since 2000, rebates totaling over $824,000 to help fund the projects
      were received from the Southern Nevada Water Authority.

  •   The photovoltaic array at the LEED Gold-Certified Greenspun Hall has produced
      electricity at the average rate of about 292,000 KWh per year. At this rate of
      production the cost savings is approximately $29,000 per year.

  •   In 2009, FM was honored with the Cashman Good Government Award from the
      Nevada Taxpayers Association.

  •   In 2010, FM was again honored with the Award for Excellence in Facilities
      Management from APPA, a national organization of Education Facilities
      executives.



  NOTABLE EFFORTS IN PROGRESS

  •   UNLV collaborated with the State of Nevada Energy Office in a renewable
      energy RFP with the goal of locating photovoltaic installations on the UNLV
      campus to produce renewable energy that would be provided to UNLV in a net
      metering arrangement. This RFP was issued in August 2010, and is in process.

  •   UNLV is considering linking existing campus solar panel research infrastructure
      into a net metering arrangement at a UNLV facility, as feasible.

  •   UNLV has submitted as a part of the State of Nevada 2011-2013 Capital
      Improvement Program the following projects with sustainability elements:

             o The conversion the UNLV electrical power system that operates at
               4kV, to a 12kV system, which would reduce system line losses and
               increase efficiency, resulting in a reduction in electrical power
               consumption.
o The replacement of a central district cooling plant that would operate
  more efficiently and reduce electrical power consumption to operate
  this central plant by an estimated of 15% or more.

				
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