DOE funds research partnership

The Department of Energy (DOE) will fund key lab research as part of a cooperative research and development agreement between The Dow Chemical Co., Midland, Mich., and DOE's

Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, Tenn., to increase adoption of cool roof technologies in the U.S. ORNL will partner with DOE's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), Berkeley, Calif., to conduct the research, which will focus on developing new solar reflective technologies that would increase by more than 50 percent the energy savings cool roofs offer for new and existing commercial buildings.

The Dow Chemical Co., ORNL and LBNL will focus on technologies to improve white elastomeric roof coatings' long-term resistance to dirt pickup and microbial growth. DOE estimates replacing or resurfacing conventional roofing materials with such improved reflective elastomeric roof coatings can reduce a commercial building's annual air-conditioning energy use up to 25 percent—an improvement from up to 15 percent reduced energy use provided by existing elastomeric roof coatings—and decrease annual carbon dioxide emissions by 5 metric tons for every 10,000 square feet of commercial roof area.