The Defense Department’s evaluation of new heat pump technology at a National Guard installation proved the technology viable and meant the department now has another tool to enhance energy security, said the deputy assistant secretary of defense for environment and energy resilience.
“We have a process in place to help commercialize new and emerging technologies and to prove that they are cost-effective and to encourage uptake across the department,” Richard Kidd told lawmakers during a hearing before the Senate Appropriations Committee yesterday. “An air source heat pump, developed in the Department of Energy, in concert with the private sector, moved through our ESTCP/SERDP program, was demonstrated at the National Guard Armory in Maine where it worked during the extremes of winter, and was proven to be cost effective.”
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The Environmental Security Technology Certification Program, or ESTCP, and Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program, or SERDP, take advantage of the latest science and technology to improve the department’s environmental performance, reduce costs and enhance and sustain mission capabilities.
The department now encourages other installations to take advantage of that technology, Kidd said. As a result of the evaluation, the department is able to provide to those installations numbers that prove the technology’s effectiveness.
“The department has a record of doing that,” Kidd said. “We did that for ground-source heat pumps, ground-source batteries — sort of like a heat-storage battery — and a variety of other technologies,” he said. “It’s a good little program that works with DOE and the commercial sector to leverage the purchasing power of the department.”
The evaluation of heat pump technology is just one way the Defense Department is working to enhance energy security and operational resilience against climate change, which Kidd called a critical national security issue and a threat multiplier.