Upstate Parts and Supply, Inc. from East Syracuse, NY leveraged assistance from TEC Innovates and a collaboration with Syracuse University to win a $200,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program to evaluate the feasibility of a next-generation residential HVAC air handler.

The project is intended to improve the energy efficiency of HVAC systems used in homes.  Upstate Parts & Supply, Inc. will collaborate with Syracuse University researchers to develop a next-generation Compact, High-Efficiency Air Handling Unit (CHE-AHU) for residential heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. The CHE-AHU will synergistically integrate the fan and heat exchanger, which is expected to reduce energy consumption of the air handler by at least 35%, improve the overall performance of the HVAC system by at least 7%, and reduce overall size by at least 30% compared to current technologies.

The TEC Innovates program identified the DOE funding opportunity and facilitated a collaboration between Upstate Parts & Supply and Professors Thong Dang and Mehmet Sarimurat of Syracuse University’s Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering to develop the project, which is based on technology developed previously by Prof. Dang and his students. TEC Innovates, which is supported with funding from the U.S. Department of Commerce, spurs innovation and entrepreneurial activity in the Central New York region to develop new and improved products for “Thermal and Environmental Controls (TEC)”.

“It is exciting for Upstate Parts and Supply to partner with Syracuse University faculty to commercialize a technology developed from research at the University,” said vice president, John DiMillo. “This project has the potential to both innovate and grow the economy and would not have happened without the support of SyracuseCoE’s TEC Innovates Program.”

Learn more about the U.S. Energy Department’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program.