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 September 25, 2015 - 1:45 PM EDT
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The University of Maryland Receives $50,000 Grant from Dominion Foundation

Award supports new research on high efficiency solar-powered cooling systems.

COLLEGE PARK, Md., Sept. 25, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On September 25, Dominion Foundation presented the University of Maryland (UMD) with a $50,000 educational grant. The grant, part of Dominion's Higher Educational Partnership, was one of 40 awarded to colleges and post-secondary schools to fund projects in energy, environmental studies, engineering and workforce development.

Maryland's project, "Design of Efficient Solar Cooling System with High Coefficient of Performance," is led by Department of Mechanical Engineering Research Professor Yunho Hwang and aims to model, design, fabricate and test a new solar cooling system that exceeds current efficiency standards.

"In the U.S., cooling and heating systems are responsible for 63% of building energy use," explained Hwang. "Therefore, utilizing solar energy to provide cooling and heating for buildings will contribute to saving energy and conserving our environment."

"We are proud to support the University of Maryland and give students an opportunity to solve an important, real-world engineering challenge," said Mike Frederick, vice president of liquefied natural gas (LNG) operations at the Dominion Cove Point LNG terminal in Lusby, Md. "Education and the environment have always been important to Dominion and Cove Point and this project matches up well with our ongoing commitment to both." The Dominion Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Dominion Resources, parent company of Dominion Cove Point.

In addition to Hwang, the UMD research team includes three Mechanical Engineering students, juniors Jonathan Kagan and Joseph Baker, and graduate student Tao Cao. Through this research project, the students will gain a better understanding of the technologies for sustainable energy conversion and utilization, and through this hands on experience, they will learn the challenges and opportunities in designing sustainable energy systems.

This project is yet another demonstration of Maryland's commitment to expanding energy research and creating technologies that improve energy efficiency and reduce environmental impact.

Hwang is the Associate Director for the Center for Environmental Energy Engineering (CEEE) and is part of CEEE's Consortium for Energy Efficiency and Heat Pumps (EEHP). EEHP's faculty and staff are responsible for building the first carbon dioxide (CO2) hot water heat pump in the United States, helping to establish CEEE as a leader in CO2 refrigerant technology. Hwang is also a Chief Science Officer with the UMD start up, Optimized Thermal Systems, Inc. (OTS), a company that provides engineering consulting for heating, ventilation, air-conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC&R) systems and customized design software and services to the HVAC&R industry, thermal management and energy conversion.

Projects like Hwang's further innovative research in the area of solar cooling and prepare the next generation of engineers to enter the workforce. "Dominion Power's generous financial support will enable us to assist in developing future energy efficiency technology," added Hwang. "As well as educate this talented new generation of innovators and researchers.

This grant was given by the Dominion Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Dominion Resources, Inc., which is the parent company of Dominion Cove Point LNG, LLC, Lusby, MD.

About the A. James Clark School of Engineering

The University of Maryland's A. James Clark School of Engineering is a premier program, ranked among the top 20 in the world. Located just a few miles from Washington, D.C., the Clark School is at the center of a constellation of high-tech companies and federal laboratories, offering students and faculty access to unique professional opportunities.

Our broad spectrum of academic programs, including the world's only accredited undergraduate fire protection engineering program, is complemented by a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem, early hands-on educational experiences, and participation in national and international competitions.

The Clark School is leading research advancements in aerospace, bioengineering, robotics, nanotechnology, disaster resilience, energy and sustainability, and cybersecurity. From the Universal Product Code to satellite radio, SMS text messaging to the implantable insulin pump, our students, faculty, and alumni are engineering life-changing innovations for millions. Learn more at

About Dominion

Dominion (NYSE: D), headquartered in Richmond, is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy. The Dominion Foundation is dedicated to improving the physical, social and economic well-being of the communities served by Dominion companies. Dominion and the Dominion Foundation support nonprofit causes that meet basic human needs, protect the environment, promote education and encourage community vitality. Dominion Foundation grants are funded by shareholder dollars and not borne by customers. For more information about Dominion and the Dominion Foundation, visit


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SOURCE University of Maryland A. James Clark School of Engineering

Source: PR Newswire (September 25, 2015 - 1:45 PM EDT)

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