WVU Industrial Extension utilized WVU's Industrial Assessment Center (IAC) to conduct an energy assessment funded by the US Department of Energy through the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. The IAC team conducted a one-day on-site visit to Smooth Ambler to interview operational personnel, evaluate operations, gather data, and develop ideas for improvement.
The assessment included a 94-page customized report including specific information related to energy consumption and costs including electricity, natural gas, propane, and waste disposal using a process map for key operations. Ten recommendations were provided including the installation of evaporators for effluent waste minimization, carbon dioxide recovery systems for the fermentation process, and installation of a variable speed drive on a chiller compressor which were 3 of the biggest opportunities for savings. Each recommendation included a summary of the activity, units of energy consumed, cost for implementation, potential savings and payback in months.