Ram comes to the DoE with more than 2 decades of experience in development and deployment of building technologies. Most recently, he led the Buildings program at the Electric Power Research Institute, where his team focused on strategies for decarbonization of the building stock in both existing and new construction, based on large scale deployments. Some of his team’s significant work include development of the first production built zero net energy community, decarbonization retrofits of existing affordable housing communities, and smart energy communities. The recent focus of his work has been on technologies to overcome infrastructure and cost barriers to decarbonization retrofits such as low power heat pumps and heat pump water heaters that can help scale deployments. As part of his work, he has also worked extensively with state organizations such as the California Energy Commission, and New York State Energy Research and Development Authority as well as local cities to advance building decarbonization He will bring experience in working with many large homebuilders, affordable housing developers, HVAC manufacturers and utilities around the country to the table to assist in scaling emerging technologies.
Prior to EPRI, Ram led teams focused on innovation and product development, as Chief Science Officer for EchoFirst, and the Director of Product Development for Ice Energy. At Ice Energy, his work led to the development of the Ice Bear, one of the first packaged thermal energy storage systems for light commercial buildings. The product was awarded ASHRAE product of the year in 2005 and 2010. Following this work, he worked on integrated home energy management systems, solar PV and solar thermal technologies at EchoFirst. His team developed and deployed some of the first smart thermostats, and implemented integrated ventilation and HVAC strategies to reduce building energy use. He holds 27 patents across a breadth of building technologies, including HVAC, water heating, solar and controls technologies.