GTI, a Des Plaines, Ill.-based research, development and training organization that focuses on the nation's energy and environmental challenges, has received a Chicago Innovation Award for its transport membrane condenser (TMC). The device uses advanced heat recovery technology that allows the capture of waste heat and water vapor from exhaust or flue gases for reuse. Recycling in this way can increase a company's operating efficiency and lower its overall energy costs.
The technology, which could be applied to industrial, commercial and residential equipment, currently is being developed as the key element in the Super Boiler Project. Applied to industrial and commercial boilers, the transport membrane condenser is the cornerstone of a recovery system that can increase fuel-to-steam efficiency by as much as 10 to 15 percent (up to 95 percent fuel-to-steam efficiency), and up to 20 percent fresh water savings, according to GTI.
"The Super Boiler Project is an example of GTI at its best," says David Carroll, GTI president and CEO. "A team of engineers and scientists took on a tough energy challenge and responded with a practical solution that offers substantial economic benefits to customers and reduced impacts on the environment."
The technology was developed under a U.S. Department of Energy contract with support from a number of partners, including Milwaukee-based boiler-manufacturer Cleaver Brooks, a rubber products company, a juice bottler and several utility companies.
GTI is working to expand the use of the TMC technology, including industrial food-drying applications.