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The Department of Energy (DOE) is spending $74 million (£56.7m) to support a total of 63 green projects, aiming to improve the energy performance of buildings and the electric grid.

National laboratories, universities, small businesses and industry partners, among others, will benefit from the investment.

More than 125 million residential and commercial buildings are currently using more energy than any other sector in the US. This figure accounts for 40% of the nation’s energy use and nearly 75% of its electricity consumption.

Research partnerships want to pursue new technologies that could improve the energy productivity of buildings and encourage the flexibility of the buildings in terms of their capacity.

Daniel R Simmons, Assistant Secretary of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy said: “DOE is accelerating its quest to improve the energy productivity and flexibility of America’s residential and commercial buildings.”

He added the primary goal of new innovative technologies would be to empower Americans with many more alternatives and to strengthen buildings’ performance without disrupting consumers’ lives.

Several projects are expected to unlock major energy savings through grid-interactive efficient buildings and advanced building construction technologies and practices. A top priority of the research is linking buildings to one another across the internet and power grid and allowing even conventional structures to rearrange operations to periods of the day when there is less demand.

Through these projects, researchers will try to tackle the overgrowing problem of cybersecurity of flexible buildings. It says other projects will address the development of novel thermal energy storage materials, advancements in non-vapour compression HVAC technologies, fuel-driven building equipment and solid-state lighting.

+info: EnergyLive