STUDY TOURS BY GORDON TAYLOR

All these have been undertaken at my own initiative and expense.

Autumn 1971 Europe

I visited Volvo, Gothenburg; AGA, Lidingo; Granges Essem, Vasteras and Finspong in Sweden and Volkswagen, Wolfsburg in Germany. Most notably, I learnt of the Volvo Automotive Wind Tunnel and discussed the design with representatives of D.S.M.A - the design consultants. I also visited the Volkswagen Automotive Wind Tunnel.

Autumn 1972 Japan

I visited Mitsubishi, Kyoto; Honda, Suzaka; the Tokyo Motor Show; the Japan Automobile Research Institute; Nippon Denso, Kariya and Toyota. I was extremely impressed by the dedication and hard work - often aided by impressive new facilities.

Autumn 1973 U.S.A.

I spent three weeks at the Ford Dearborn Engineering Center, including one week at the E.P.A. Symposium on Advanced Automotive Power Plants. I also made one-day visits to see Mr Gino Sovran at General Motors Research, Warren and to the Chrysler Proving Ground, Chelsea to discuss automotive wind tunnels and their use. I spent one week in Cambridge, Massachusetts, including visits to Scientific Energy Systems, Watertown and Thermo-Electron Corporation, Waltham - both builders of Rankine (steam) engined cars reported on at the E.P.A. Symposium.

August 1974 Germany

I made a two-day visit to Volkswagen, Wolfsburg for wide-ranging discussions on vehicle heating, ventilating and engine cooling and aerodynamic testing and a tour of the Golf/Rabbit production plant.

February 1975 Australia

I visited Smiths, Sydney; Ford, Geelong; Nippon Denso, Melbourne; C.S.I.R.O., Melbourne and the University of Queensland, Brisbane. As well as seeing two heater manufacturing plants - one shrinking, one growing - and Ford Australia Product Engineering, I spent four days at C.S.I.R.O., where they have been working on harnessing solar energy for heating water and heating and cooling buildings for some 20 years. Much of the time was with Mr R.V. (Bob) Dunkle, Chief Radiation Scientist. In Brisbane I talked with Mr S.V. (Steve) Szokolay, who lead the team which designed the solar heating system of the house in Milton Keynes, U.K. (I had visited the house twice).

Summer 1975 U.S.A.

I visited the International Congress of the International Solar Energy Society (I.S.E.S.), Los Angeles and afterwards Stanford University, California; Colorado State University, Fort Collins and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge. The week-long congress and exposition reported the rapidly-advancing state of the art in all the applications of solar energy. At Stanford I discussed compact heat exchangers in general and the Splitter Fin in particular with Dean W.M. Kays and Professor A.L. London. I inspected the two completed highly-instrumented solar houses in Fort Collins and discussed Thermic Panels with Mr Shawn Buckley and also math-modelling of internal combustion (Otto cycle) engines at M.I.T.

Summer 1976 North America

I visited the week-long Joint Conference of the Canadian and American Sections of the International Solar Energy Society in Winnipeg, Canada and afterwards the Honeywell Energy Resources Center, Minneapolis; the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; the University of Wisconsin, Madison; the Energy Research and Development Administration, Washington D.C.; the National Bureau of Standards, Gaithersburg and the Smithsonian Radiation Biology Laboratory, Rockville, Maryland. The papers presented at the conference covered the same wide area as at Los Angeles the previous year but revealed the very substantial advances that had been made on every front. At Honeywell I saw some of their work on both flat plate and concentrating collectors and their solar simulator, which was used for testing solar collectors indoors. At the University of Minnesota, I visited Professor E.M. Sparrow and discussed convective heat transfer with special reference to my analysis of the Splitter Fin - which he approved. At the University of Wisconsin I spoke briefly with Professor J.A. Duffie and Professor W.A. Beckman and at greater length with several of their graduate students - who were studying the solar heating and cooling of buildings. At E.R.D.A. I spoke with Mr C.J. Swet - Program Manager of the Thermal Energy Storage Branch - and with Dr F.W. Morse - Chief of the Division of Solar Energy - notably about international R and D programs. I also visited the E.R.D.A. Solar Energy Exhibition on the Mall. At the University of Maryland I spoke to Professor Redfield Allen and Dr Dave Annan - both of the Solar Energy Projects Office - about solar air conditioning and again about international R and D programs (which they manage for E.R.D.A.). At the National Bureau of Standards I visited Dr James Hill of the Thermal Engineering Division and saw many of their building thermal - and particularly solar - test facilities and discussed their work. At the Smithsonian Radiation Biology Laboratory I discussed solar spectral measurements with Dr W. Klein and Mr B. Goldberg and solar collector testing with Mr J. Sager.

February 1977 Germany

I visited the Deubau Construction Exhibition in Essen including especially the A.S.E. Exhibition and one-day conference on Solar Energy and then the Philips Research Laboratory in Aachen. These visits gave an excellent impression of the well-organized national effort in this field. Most notably, the A.S.E. includes some 16 major companies and the solar energy R and D programme receives significant funding from the Federal Government. The Philips Laboratory includes an Experimental House which serves as a test bed for a wide range of ideas for conserving energy and harnessing solar energy.

April 1977 U.K.

I visited the International Solar Energy Society - U.K. Section one-day conference on "The Testing of Solar Collectors and Systems" and afterwards the Solar Energy Group at the Building Research Establishment, Garston; the Solar Energy Unit at University College, Cardiff and the National Centre for Alternative Technology, Machynlleth. I was accompanied by friends from the Swedish Council for Building Research, who had given papers at the conference. The first two visits enabled us to see the hardware mentioned in several papers presented at the conference and to have much more detailed discussions. The N.C.A.T. has several houses incorporating major energy conservation and solar heating measures.

April 1977 France

I visited the "Journees Solaires" three-day conference and exhibition on solar energy in Nice. This gave an excellent impression of the well-organized national effort in this field. Several major companies and national research laboratories are involved and the R and D programme receives significant government funding.

June 1977 North America

I attended the Annual Meeting of the American Section of the International Solar Energy Society in Orlando, Florida, followed by visits to the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta; Carnegie-Mellon University, Pittsburgh; Ford Motor Company, Dearborn, Michigan; the National Bureau of Standards, Gaithersburg; the Energy Research and Development Administration, Washington D.C.; the NASA Lewis Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio and the University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. The Orlando conference updated me on the vigorous North American activity on solar energy and most of the visits added considerably more detail.

May 1978 Sweden

I visited Granges Aluminium, Finspong to see their new solar collector and then Ostgotabyggen, Linkoping and Sunroc Energy, Sigtuna - who are both carrying out R and D in solar heating systems with interseasonal storage. I then attended the VVS 78 Show in Stockholm, where a wide range of conservation and solar hardware - much of it new - was being exhibited. I also visited the Department of Building Technology at the Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm and Svenska Flaktfabriken, Stockholm - both of whom are carrying out R and D in energy conservation and solar heating. Finally, I visited the housing estate at Taby where many of these ideas are being tested.

August 1978 U.S.A.

After attending the Annual Meeting of the American Section of the International Solar Energy Society in Denver, Colorado, I visited the Solar Energy Research Institute in Golden and then Colorado State University in Fort Collins, both major centres of research in solar energy utilization. I then visited Sandia, Albequerque to see their work on solar thermal power - including the 5 MWt "power tower" test facility - and to NASA, Huntsville, Alabama to see their work on the solar heating and cooling of buildings - including a large solar simulator, which is used for testing solar collectors indoors. After a short visit to Ford, Dearborn I travelled to Washington, D.C. to visit the Department of Energy to discuss aspects of the R and D programmes and to the National Bureau of Standards to discuss the testing of solar components and systems. Finally I paid a short visit to the Thermo-Electron Corporation in Waltham, Massachusetts to talk about appliance efficiency.

June 1979 North America

This trip started with the week-long International Congress of the International Solar Energy Society in Atlanta, Georgia. I then went to Washington, D.C., visiting the InterTechnology Solar Corporation, the National Bureau of Standards - on solar water heater testing, the Department of Housing and Urban Development - on the residential solar demonstration program, and the Department of Energy - on passive solar heating, biomass, photovoltaics and the solar technology transfer program and - in conservation - lighting, total energy, heat pumps and alternative automotive engines. In Ottawa I visited the Department of Energy, Mines and Resources - on energy conservation and solar heating from a policy viewpoint, followed by a day and a half at the National Research Council - discussing these same topics from an R and D programme viewpoint. Returning to the U.S.A., I visited the Thermo-Electron Corporation in Waltham, Massachusetts regarding solar energy in buildings and energy conservation in road transport. The following week I attended the two-day Workshop on Energy Storage for Automobile Propulsion in Alexandria, Virginia. As well as battery-electric systems, mechanical storage and transmissions and chemical and thermal stores with heat engines were considered. Finally I attended the 6th Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion Conference in Washington, D.C. Where once this topic had been covered within the International Solar Energy Society meeting, this conference was almost as big as that of I.S.E.S. itself.

September 1996 Freiberg, Germany

I attended the Eurosun '96 Conference and there met a number of acquaintances in the International Solar Energy Society. Amongst the presentations and papers, I was particularly pleased to hear of the progress with large scale demonstration central solar heating plants, with interseasonal storage - notably in Germany. Large scale demonstrations of photovoltaic electricity generation were also reported. Both represented significant advances since the solar conferences I had attended some 17 to 20 years previously. Following the Conference, I took the opportunity to tour the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy in Freiburg.

March 2000 Stuttgart, Germany

I attended a Short Course on Vehicle Aerodynamics, held at the FKFS, Stuttgart. The presentations described the state of the art of vehicle aerodynamics, wind tunnels, and aerodynamic software. I also toured the world-class facilities of the FKFS, including the low-noise full-scale vehicle wind tunnel.

June 2000 Copenhagen, Denmark

I took part in an organised visit to the Marstal Solar District Heating plant, which is the largest in the world. It has about 9000 m2 of solar collectors, with an output of up to 7 MW, connected to an existing district heating scheme serving some 1250 dwellings.

I then attended the Eurosun 2000 Conference, following the papers on solar heating, including district heating and interseasonal storage. These reported on several recent substantial schemes, notably in Germany and Denmark. I also joined in visits to the Danish Technological Institute and the Danish Technical University, both of whom are doing world-class R & D in solar heating and photovoltaics.

September 2001 Berlin, Germany

I visited the Bewag Fuel Cell Innovation exhibition at Treptower Park. This featured a Ballard Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell of 250 kWe and 230 kWth, connected to the Bewag electric power and district heating networks. In addition, there were exhibits from several other organizations involved in fuel cell R & D and manufacture.

March 2002 Stuttgart, Germany

I attended a Short Course on Vehicle Aerodynamics - Thermomanagement at the FKFS Stuttgart. I also co-authored the introductory paper. The presentations described the state of design and testing of power train and brake cooling, and cabin climate control.


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