Category Archives: Research

18Jul/19

NORA 2020 & 2021 budget released for comment

Alexandria, VA – The proposed 2020 and 2021 biennial Budget for the National Oilheat Research Alliance has been under development for several months.
The NORA Finance Committee and the Executive Committee have reviewed the budget and it is now being released for public comment. At the conclusion of the public comment period, the budget will be forwarded to the Department of Energy.
Anyone interested in commenting on this should forward comments, by September 1, 2019 to JHuber@NORAweb.org.
The 2020 and 2021 budget incorporates the 2014 and 2018 changes in the NORA statute and emphasizes research & development and adds an energy efficiency component. Additionally, the budget continues to emphasize the close working relationships with the state associations.

Download the Proposed 2020-2021 NORA budget here.
03Jul/19

Product Development Program Opportunity Notice

PON No. 2019

The National Oilheat Research Alliance Board of Directors has authorized funds to be spent on various research projects. Under PON No. 2019, NORA plans to award multiple cost-shared contracts in nine categories, up to a total of $350,000 for each award.  This funding allocation may be adjusted depending on the quantity and quality of proposals received. There is no minimum project funding amount per project award.   All projects will be managed by NORA’s Research Center. Proposals are due August 1, 2019 at 5pm EST.

NORA PON No. 2019 seeks proposals to support the development,demonstration,and commercialization of Oilheat
technologies and systems in the following categories.

(See the actual PON for details)

  • Category A: Ability to go to 100% Low carbon liquid fuel (LCFW). Seeking fuels, components, and burners for NORA testing commercialization
  • Category B: Biofuel blending, terminal storage, on-site storage & delivery 
  • Category C: Modeling and report demonstrating LCFW appliances are superior than electric heat pumps for residential applications
  • Category D: Assessing the biofuel fuel supply and delivery infrastructure capabilities in 2030 and 2050
  • Category E: Demonstrate and field test the integration of latest generation smart thermostats in boiler applications versus the demand, assuming B50 in 2030 and B100 in 2050
  • Category F: Demonstrate and field test self-diagnostic burners and or appliances that provide trend analysis, component approaching failure and troubleshooting failure analysis.
  • Category G: Develop an analytical economic optimization model and report covering the sizing and operation of adding a cold climate heat pump to a non-condensing boiler
  • Category H: Develop advanced heating technologies including LCLF heat pumps focusing on efficiency and zero net carbon
  • Category I: Develop off-grid or grid failure heating systems that can operate in absence of power using batteries, generators or other means

    This funding allocation may be adjusted based upon the quantity and quality of the proposals received. There is no minimum project funding amount per project award. 

22Jan/19

Environmental Benefits of Biodiesel

Biodiesel significantly reduces Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions compared to petroleum. The most comprehensive, accurate and up-to-date lifecycle analysis of U.S. biodiesel produced from soybean oil concludes that GHG emissions are reduced 66-72% relative to average U.S. petroleum
while not trading off food-for-fuel nor destroying forests.

All of this is carefully explained in the report Environmental Benefits of Biodiesel and the Renewable Fuel Standard.

24Oct/18

Technical Workshop and the Oilheat Vision

The National Oilheat Research Alliance (NORA) recently hosted its Third Annual Technology Workshop in conjunction with the Southern New England Energy Conference on September 24th and 25th at the Newport Marriott, Newport, Rhode Island.   

NORA’s Workshop highlighted the research work being done at the NORA lab, NORA sponsored projects, innovations underway in Europe and technology advances of companies in the industry.

With a theme of “finding the path forward” for the oilheat industry, the workshop showcased 15 speakers from the U.S. and Europe followed by a panel discussing where the industry sees immediate and long-term threats and which technologies and initiatives can address them.

You can see each of the speakers and their presentations here

15Oct/18

Outgoing NORA Chairman Leaves Research Legacy

Tom Santa, Santa Energy, Bridgeport, CT, has been the Chairman of the National Oilheat Research Alliance (NORA) since 2017 with his term expiring at the end 2018. For decades, Santa has been a strong advocate of oilheating research. He was an active participant in many Brookhaven Technology Conferences, with a particular interest in bringing a rigorous understanding of the need for good data to assess fuel quality.

When Santa took over as Chairman, NORA’s Research Laboratory in Plainview, NY was still in its infancy. With very little equipment in place, and with the well regarded Dr. Tom Butcher at the helm, Santa focused on ensuring the industry developed new technologies and a better understanding of the industries’ problems and potential solutions. An active, scientifically sound and well respected lab was vital to achieve this. In addition to Dr. Butcher, a strong team needed to be put in place, preferably young talent. Dr. Butcher was encouraged to develop and work with recent graduates and promising students from nearby Stony Brook University. Continue reading

24Jul/18

NORA Technical Workshop Final Agenda

Once again, the oilheating industry will gather in Newport, RI for a day of technical presentations and discussions as NORA hosts its 3rd Annual Technical Workshop on September 24th and 25th at the Newport Marriott, Newport, RI.

As it was last year, the Workshop will be held in conjunction with the Southern New England Energy Conference which is sponsored by the Connecticut Energy Marketers Association, the Oilheat Institute of Rhode Island and the Massachusetts Energy Marketers Association.

The Workshop will highlight the research work being done at the NORA lab, NORA’s sponsored projects, innovations underway in Europe and technology advances from companies within the oilheating industry.

The workshop will offer presentations in the following areas:
  • NORA Goals
  • New Technologies for Liquid Fuels 
  • Achieving Higher Efficiency
  • Biofuels
  • New Ideas for Industry 
  • Panel Discussion on Future

Download the workshop agenda

Registration for the NORA Technical Workshop is included the the Southern New England Energy Conference registration.
 
10Oct/17

NORA hosts Technical Workshop

 

The National Oilheat Research Alliance (NORA) held its second Oilheat Technical Workshop on September 18th -19th in Newport, RI. The workshop was held in partnership with the Southern New England Energy Conference. John Huber, NORA President, kicked-off the program describing the workshop’s goals as providing information on the progress of NORA R&D programs and to explore new ideas in an open forum.
  Continue reading

20Jul/17

2017 NORA Technical Workshop Call for Presentations

The National Oilheat Research Alliance (NORA) will hold a Technical Workshop in coordination with the Southern New England Energy Conference (SNEEC) at Gurney’s Newport, Newport, RI, September, 18-19, 2017.
 
NORA is inviting proposals for presentations at this workshop which will be an open exchange among technical leaders of the oilheat industry.
 
General topic areas to be included are:
  • The direction of renewable heating and cooling in New England
  • Update on NORA-sponsored R&D projects
  • Technical aspects of biodiesel use and new biofuels
  • Advancing oilheat energy efficiency
  • Future directions in controls and diagnostics
  • An open forum on NORA research directions
Those interested should contact or send an abstract to Dr.Tom Butcher, Technical Director, NORA at tbutcher@noraweb.org or 571.234.7756.
04Jun/17

NORA Releases Biodiesel Use Survey

The National Oilheat Research Alliance has recently released the results of a survey on the usage and potentials benefits and issues associated with the blending of traditional heating oil with renewable biodiesel for home heat use.

Currently, 5% biodiesel blends (B-5) are being used seamlessly across the oilheat market. Some heating oil fuel marketers are delivering B-20 to all of their customers and a few are delivering much higher blends. This blending into the fuel mix in this market leads to concerns about the impact on reliability and service.