The General Motors Powertrain Engineering Center in Torino, Italy, has harvested 300,000 kWh of energy from test benches – equipment that tests various measures of a running engine – within a year, and used it to power all of the facility’s computers.
The plant runs 15 test benches, which help engineers design more fuel-efficient engines for Chevrolet and Opel. The facility is building five more benches, GM says.
Additionally, GM has announced that its Pontiac Engineering Center in Michigan has sent 26.7 million kWh of energy back to the grid since 2008.
GM says energy efficiency plays a role in its environmental commitment, which also includes waste-reduction efforts. In June, the company added its 100th landfill-free facility, a parts distribution center in Lansing, Mich., and in 2011, GM says it recycled or reused 2.6 million metric tons at its facilities worldwide.
In other energy-capture news: batteries alongside Philadelphia train tracks are saving Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority about 9 MWh of power a week, the New York Times Green Blog reports. The Viridity Energy system enables trains and trolleys to put energy back into the electric grid by capturing the kinetic energy created as they put on the brakes.
Photo Credit: General Motors