Ford Contributes Focus Electric to ReNEWW House at Purdue University
Ford Motor Company is teaming up with Whirlpool Corporation, Duke Energy, BTCPower, and AeroVironment on an exciting project that could potentially change the way we live — quite literally. Whirlpool’s ReNEWW House, found on the campus of Purdue University, takes a 1920s bungalow and upfits it with modern amenities including solar panels and spray foam installation to improve its efficiency. These features don’t diminish the natural, timeless luster of the home, demonstrating that it is possible to modernize a home without interfering with the qualities that make it feel like home.
“If you look at Middle America, there is a very large population of old houses,” said Jason Schneeman, project engineer, sustainability, Whirlpool Corporation. “We wanted to prove that you could take these beautiful old houses and make them energy efficient and comfortable to live in.”
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Ford’s contribution to the project is a 2017 Ford Focus Electric, which carries the idea of sustainable living into travels outside the homestead. To accommodate the Focus Electric’s charging needs, Duke Energy enabled the installation of a BTCPower 50-kilowatt DC Fast Charger, which utilizes energy generated by the home’s solar panels.
“Combining the home, solar energy generation, an advanced EV charging system, and an electric vehicle allows us to take what we’ve calculated analytically and demonstrate it in the real world,” said Steve Henderson, Ford manager of Vehicle Electrification and Infrastructure.
The ReNEWW House isn’t just a display piece — it serves as the living quarters for three Purdue students who are involved in the WORLD rotational leadership development program.
Ford previously worked to aid in the retrofitting of homes through the MyEnergi Lifestyle project, which included the use of Ford C-MAX Energi PHEVs.
“MyEnergi Lifestyle was the genesis of this, so we looked at that and discovered that if you add electric cars and new appliances, you can dramatically change both your footprint and your cost structure,” Schneeman said. “Combining all of that together can save money and lower your carbon footprint by 50 percent.”