You are here


SAIC projects

A recent evaluation of potential energy conservation measures on campus was performed by the international consulting firm Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC). The subsequent report described conservation strategies with the potential to reduce campus energy use by about 32 percent, resulting in a 114,500 MTE CO2 reduction (this is about 22.5 percent of current emissions).

Anaerobic Digester at Beef and Sheep Study

Anaerobic digestion (AD) is one of the most established technologies for processing waste organics. This study investigated the feasibility of installing an Anaerobic Digester to produce renewable energy from available streams of organic waste (feedstock) within the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign campus. This study assumed that one on-site digester would be installed in the University’s South Farms.

Biomass co-firing pilot at Abbott Power Plant

Plans are progressing to add a new energy source at Abbott Power Plant – biomass fuel made from plants – following the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency 2012 decision to grant a test-fire permit.

The idea involves using a biomass material, made from wood or miscanthus grass for example, which then would be added to the coal. The mixture could contain anywhere from 10-20 percent biomass fuel, though the tests will determine the proper mixture and whether the process presents any dangers during the combustion process.

Geothermal at Allerton Park

Allerton Park was able to install a geothermal energy system at the Evergreen Lodge, with funding from the Student Sustainability Committee (SSC) and the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).  There are opportunities for future installations of geothermal energy, when funding allows.

Solar Thermal at ARC

The 24-panel, gravity fed solar-thermal system on the roof of the ARC preheats domestic cold water prior to its introduction into the steam-powered heat exchanger for domestic hot water, which significantly reduces steam usage for domestic hot water during normal operating periods. There are three main areas of hot water usage (domestic, pool, and air heating), but domestic (i.e. showers and sinks) represents the most pressing need and efficient use of solar technology.

ECE Rooftop Solar PVs

The ECE Building includes Solar Panels on its roof. The panels provide about 11% of the building's energy needs. The infrastructure for connecting these panels to the building electric supply was included in the original design and construction costs for the full building, while the solar panels themselves were funded separately. 

BIF Rooftop Solar PVs

The Business Instructional Facility was the first production rooftop solar PV array installed on a campus building.  In 2009, 168 panels were installed above the auditorium, with 190 Watts per panel and a total system size of 32 kW. The installed panels were SANYO HIP-190/200BA3 PV Modules, with UniRac SolarMount PV Mounting Hardware, Xantrex PV20208 Inverters, and Xantrex CB-12H20-3R Combiner Boxes. 

Rooftop Solar Potential

One potential method for acheiving the 2015 iCAP goal for on-campus solar is to retrofit existing campus buildings with rooftop solar.  The amount of sun shine on each roof, the viability of the building itself, and the funding mechanisms all need to be reviewed and resolved for this idea to be implemented.  The viability for each building includes approval from the Architectural Review Committee, agreement of the building occupant facility leaders, and structural and electrical viability for the building.  As of 2016, the financial payback for solar photovoltaics is not strong enough to ea


Subscribe to RSS - Completed