Friday, July 22, 2011

OED's Bloomingfoods Visit

The next time you're in Bloomington, make sure to swing by Bloomingfoods to take a look around.  Bloomingfoods is a repeat grant recipient of OED's.  Last year, they installed a 4.4 kW photovoltaic solar array, and this year, they used a Solar Thermal Grant from OED to install a solar thermal drain-back system for heating the store's domestic water supply.  (These are at separate locations, by the way.)

Five solar panels were installed in a location on the roof of the store ensure no obstruction to sunlight access, again maximizing efficiency.  With 60-70% of the hot water load for the grocery store being provided by this drain-back system, it is expected that there will be a $1,400 saved in the first year alone.

Due to its freezing and overheating prevention, the drain-back system was a great choice for replacing Bloomingfoods's older, 100-gallon commercial water heater.  Hot water is needed for in-store cleaning, food production, and other services throughout the store.  Whether or not they know it, this system is a great help and asset for the 8,300 member owners and the 1,000+ people who walk in the door!

Many thanks to the great folks at Bloomingfoods for a job well done.  We look forward to seeing what else is in store in the future!

Bloomingfoods was a 2010 recipient of a Solar Thermal Grant from the Indiana Office of Energy Development.  This program is funded through the State Energy Program by the U.S. Department of Energy.