For large institutions, slight improvements in water and energy efficiency can yield big savings. In conjunction with a group of Environmental Analysis students, Dining Services is implementing new technologies that improve energy and water efficiency.
The eCube (now called eTemp) is an energy-saving device for commercial refrigerators and freezers. The device fits over the thermostat in the cooler and mimics food thermal qualities. With the eCube installed the cooler regulates temperature based on food temperature instead of air temperature, ensuring more efficient operation. The eCube also increases efficiency by reducing how frequently cooling equipment turns on and off.
During the summer of 2012, Dining Services installed eCubes in all walk in freezers and coolers. A test of one cooler showed a 19% reduction of energy usage and 56% reduction in mechanical shock.
Low-Flow Spray Valves
Dining Services has started replacing conventional nozzles with low-flow spray valves, which use less water and clean just as well. These devices not only cut water usage by half, but also reduce energy used to heat water.
Turbo pots speed up cooking time and save energy. These pots are designed with an aluminum heat sink on the bottom to provide efficient and uniform heating. The Turbo Pot is estimated to cut energy use and heating time by approximately 50 percent compared to standard pots.