The Power of Cool: Sustainable A/C Unit Actually Generates Electricity

The BeCool runs on natural gas

July 22, 2016 9:00 am

In the U.S., air conditioners use about 5% of all the electricity produced, at a cost of more than $10 billion. They also dump 100 million tons of carbon dioxide into the air each year.

Essentially, in the very act of trying to stay cool, we’re contributing to the warming of the planet, and paying mightily for doing so.

Not super chill.

While no one seems to be advocating getting rid of A/C during the Heat Dome (or any other time), the Florida-based company Be Power Tech has come with a pretty sweet alternative.

Instead of running on electricity, the startup’s BeCool unit is powered by natural gas, which slashes its CO2 emissions more or less in half (depending on the source of your electricity). Better yet, it also generates electricity while it’s running, and stores it in a fuel cell so you can use it to power other devices.

Created at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the exclusive technology used in the BeCool turns “energy savings into energy earnings” because the “value of the electricity produced is higher than the cost of natural gas consumed,” according to the company.

So how exactly does it work?  Scientific sorcery:

Be Power Tech will begin trialing the rooftop-mounted unit with commercial buildings next year and, if all goes well, those BeCool units — which can also provide heat — will hit the market in 2018 with residential systems possibly to follow in as few as three years.

 To volunteer your office for a unit (or see if they’ll build you a little guy for your house), submit an inquiry.

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