The ETEC used their capabilities to support the DOE in a variety of energy-related projects. A sample of those projects is presented here.
ETEC participated in studies and tests involving advanced solar collectors with potential for commercial electricity production. The group's experience in the design and analysis of heat transfer systems was applied to the development of the Solar One central power conversion unit located near Barstow, California. Separately, Area IV hosted a solar concentrator and receiver used to power a 25 kW Sterling engine generator module.
ETEC supported the DOE in the development of a number of energy conversion processes designed to improve the utilization of coal. They performed design studies and operated a coal conversion test facility to develop a innovative method of converting coal into liquid and gas fuels.
The recovery of heat energy from the ocean depths was undertaken by the DOE during the Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) project. In summary, the OTEC concept utilized the temperature differential between warm ocean surface water and the colder water found some distance beneath the surface to generate electricity. ETEC supplied the test director and technical management for the OTEC-1 tests.
ETEC used their experience in energy auditing, technical evaluation design review and monitoring of institutional conservation programs to support the DOE. The efforts were designed to help federal energy managers identify and implement energy and conservation measures. Energy conservation and solar energy concepts were incorporated into government buildings.
The testing of components to determine their vulnerability to the effects of earthquakes was undertaken by ETEC. The testing was performed to determine the fragility of piping systems during simulated earthquake events. The testing of devices used to isolate buildings, bridges and hardware from earthquake movement was also conducted.