Thursday, November 26, 2015


UTSA implements additional energy and water cost-saving initiatives


Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering Building, UTSA Main Campus

(Photo by Patrick R. Dunn)

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(May 14, 2012) -- Working closely with other UTSA departments, the UTSA Office of Facilities has initiated a multi-pronged effort to reduce energy and water consumption on campus. These reductions provide both economic and environmental benefits.

Cost-containment strategies in the Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering (BSE) Building -- the biggest energy consumer on the Main Campus -- will have a significant positive impact on energy consumption. UTSA soon will install a bypass on the BSE's primary cooling system that will allow the building's 125-horsepower cooling water pumps to be shut off during periods of low cooling demand.

Because of the BSE's proximity to the South Thermal Energy Plant (STEP) cooling pumps, the BSE will receive sufficient cooling pressure from the STEP during these periods of low cooling demand. Also implemented at the BSE will be an improved control schedule that will reduce the amount of fresh air changes during periods of low occupancy. A building usage evaluation will be conducted to ensure that the most accurate air change settings are implemented. The control sequence will both maximize energy savings and ensure adequate indoor air quality.

The final upgrade at the BSE includes a change in the control points related to dehumidification control. Once implemented, upgrades to the BSE will save the university an estimated $100,000 annually.

Several other UTSA Tri-Campus cost-containment initiatives also are yielding significant cost reductions and some revenue enhancements including:

  • $70,000 annual water savings for installation of synthetic turf at Campus Recreation playing fields on the Main Campus, which is expected to save approximately 14 million gallons of water per year. This project, which was initiated and funded by Campus Recreation, also allowed UTSA to receive a $178,532 conservation rebate from the San Antonio Water System (SAWS).
  • $45,000 annual energy savings from lighting upgrades at the Monterey Building at the Downtown Campus slated to take place in 2012 (annual reduction of 450 tons of CO2)
  • $38,000 annual savings from a new waste disposal contract
  • $29,000 annual energy savings from installation of solar panels at the University Center, Engineering Building and Downtown Campus (annual reduction of 300 tons of CO2). These grant-funded projects also have allowed UTSA to qualify for more than $480,000 in energy conservation rebates from CPS Energy.
  • $16,000 annual savings for a new fire monitoring connection at the Downtown and Hemisfair Park campuses
  • $5,000 annual energy savings for installation of LED lights at the Hemisfair Park Campus (annual reduction of 50 tons of CO2)
  • $4,000 annual savings for the Applied Engineering and Technology Building (Main Campus) cooling-coil water reclamation (800,000 gallons of water saved annually)

"Energy and water conservation are ongoing priorities for the university, and we recognize these efforts can be disruptive at times," said Kerry Kennedy, UTSA vice president for business affairs. "We appreciate the patience of faculty, staff and students as we make campus facilities more efficient, improve the institution's bottom line and help reduce our impact on the environment."

For more information, contact UTSA Facilities Work Control at 210-458-4262.




Dec. 1, 9 a.m.

CITE Venture Competition & Exposition

The annual Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) 100K Venture Competition and Exposition will be held on the Main Campus on Dec. 1. Twenty-eight teams from across the university will exhibit their project; six teams will compete for a prize pool of more than $100,000 in funding to launch their new venture / company. More than 650 students have participated in launching new technology ventures.
Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering (BSE 2.102), Main Campus

Dec. 3, 5:30 p.m.

UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert

This concert features 50 community children performing music in the UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert. The children, led by UTSA music students studying to be music teachers, will join together in playing the Theme from Batman at their concert. The Batman of San Antonio, a local celebrity figure, will make an appearance at the concert. This event is free.
Buena Vista Theatre, Downtown Campus

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Did You Know?

UTSA writes the book on all-digital libraries

As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.

At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.

Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.

With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.

Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.

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UTSA's Vision

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