A cooler brew with greener success

Each day at MillerCoors, about 220,000 cases of beer isproduced and shipped all across the southeast. In the summer month, the heat of the Deep South made working conditions uncomfortable, that was until engineers found a new way to beat the heat.

Southwest Georgia is known to turn up the heat during the summer months. MillerCoors found a unique way to beat the heat and lower the temperature without having to lower the thermostat.

"We needed a new roof anyway so were putting a new roof on and were just putting this extra coating on top of it to help with the heat load," says David Dixon, Environment Health and Safety Science specialist.

MillerCoors transformed their 500,000 square foot tar roof with a reflective covering. This 'cool roof' is the first of its kind in southwest Georgia.

What they're really trying to do is cut down on the cooling coast and increase the comfort of the workers down below, by putting this substance on and it reflects about 87 percent of the sun's rays so that heat load doesn't go into the building and make it hotter.

What exactly is it you ask?

David Dixon describes the elastic like a stretchy film. It's a fairly thick substance. You do roll it on or spray it on like paint but it's a little bit thicker.

A benefit to this elastic polymer is that it adds a fire retardant value to the roof where as the traditional tar roof does not.

With the latest measurements, even with the roof not completely finished yet, there is a ten degree cooling capacity now versus to what it was before they put the cool roof on there. Not only did they bring the thermostat down ten degrees, they lowered energy usage as well.

David Dixon says, "The total energy savings so far this year has been almost 6-6.5 percent, but that includes all those other things too."

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