WVU engineering prof to use award money for energy efficiency training, climate change mitigation research in China
Dr. Bhaskaran Gopalakrishnan of West Virginia University’s College of Engineering and Mineral Resources was presented with two awards to train personnel at Chinese industries in energy efficiency and to develop international centers that assess organizations’ energy use, waste and productivity. Gopalakrishnan is a professor of Industrial and Management Systems and director of WVU’s Industrial Assessment Center.
The University of California’s Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory awarded Gopalakrishnan $23,500; The Oakridge National Laboratory for Industrial Assessment Center training activities presented him with a parallel award for $39,461. Gopalakrishnan’s projects are called, “Industrial Energy Efficiency and Climate Change Mitigation Research in China,” and “Development and Delivery of an Industrial Assessment Center Training Program for International Partners.”
Gopalakrishnan, industrial engineering Ph.D. student Yi Fang and engineering scientist Subodh Chaudhari use the awards to visit China to train personnel from industrial enterprises in Guangdong and Jiangsu Provinces. Also, Gopalakrishnan will assist in development of a training program to create IACs across the globe, with a particular focus on China and India.
IACs are part of an industry wide effort to increase resource productivity, an initiative supported by the U.S Department of Energy’s Industrial Technologies Program.
To help manufacturers save money through efficient energy and waste management, an IAC team of engineering faculty and students conduct site visits and perform energy assessments. A report detailing the analysis, findings and recommendations is sent to the client; statistics reveal that the recommendations have produced significant energy and cost savings.
“Chinese industry uses a vast amount of energy and has the need to reduce energy usage and emissions,” said Gopalakrishnan. “Training the Chinese on effective best practices for energy efficiency will play a large role in global climate mitigation and open doors for enhancing markets for U.S. energy efficiency products.”
Gopalakrishnan is also an energy efficiency research fellow with the Industries of the Future at the National Research Center for Coal and Energy, part of WVU’s Advanced Energy Initiative. The WVU AEI coordinates University-wide energy research in science, technology, engineering and public policy.
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