8 March 2012

Kyma cuts energy usage by 68% in cleanroom and 35% overall after grant from North Carolina Green Business Fund

Kyma Technologies Inc of Raleigh, NC, USA, which provides crystalline gallium nitride (GaN), aluminum nitride (AlN) and aluminum gallium nitride (AlGaN) materials and related products and services, has announced energy-saving measures completed in 2011, including the largest geothermal HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) system for cleanroom air handling in North Carolina.

After being awarded more than $400,000 in April 2011 by the North Carolina Green Business Fund, Kyma contracted TriMech Inc. of Mebane, NC to install a 30 ton geothermal HVAC system and a 20 ton energy-efficient industrial chiller, and Danco Electrical Contractors Inc of Youngsville, NC to install energy-efficient lighting. Also, Kyma installed a facility-wide data acquisition system for energy usage analysis and optimization. It estimates that the energy needed to run the facilities for its cleanroom has been reduced by 68% and that the firm’s overall energy usage has been reduced by 35%. The data acquisition system will also allow continued analysis of other energy-consuming systems to identify additional energy savings opportunities.

The geothermal HVAC unit controls all of the air handling for Kyma’s class 10,000 (ISO 7) cleanroom, and maintains stringent temperature and humidity requirements (with 25 air changes per hour using 100% outside air). This geothermal unit is one of the largest geothermal units in the state of North Carolina and is the only one that uses 100% outside air. Addison provided the custom HVAC unit, which is uniquely designed for parameters outside the normal design space. Kyma is continuing to work with TriMech and Addison engineers to monitor and optimize operation.

“This is the only known geothermal heat pump in the state using 100% outside air, and we are breaking new ground in showing that this type of system works and is very energy-efficient,” comments TriMech’s president Paul Penland.

“This project has helped us to significantly lower our costs while simultaneously lowering our impact on the environment,” says Dr Heather Splawn, Kyma’s chief operating officer & director of business development (who led the project). “We now have a much better understanding of our energy usage, which will help in downstream decisions,” she adds. “We are very thankful for the vision of the North Carolina Board of Science and Technology and those state legislators who support the NC Green Business Fund.”

The fund provides competitive grants to help North Carolina’s small businesses develop commercial innovations and applications in the biofuels industry and the green building industry, as well as attract and leverage private sector investments and entrepreneurial growth in environmentally conscious technologies and renewable energy products and businesses. It is managed by the North Carolina Board of Science & Technology (a State-authorized advisory board administered by the North Carolina Department of Commerce), which encourages, promotes and supports scientific, engineering, and industrial research applications in North Carolina.

Tags: Kyma GaN AlGaN AlN GaN-on-Si template AlN-on-Si template PVDNC HVPE

Visit: www.kymatech.com

Visit: www.ncscitech.com/grant-programs/green-business-fund

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