Research: Renewable Energy through Anaerobic Digestion

Research: Renewable Energy through Anaerobic Digestion

STI has recently started a research experiment with a two stage anaerobic digester. We constructed the digester out of two 58 gallon poly barrels and we are currently using a small domestic water heater to maintain the optimum temperature of 95 degrees for methanogenic bacteria formation. So…

Solar Powered Coffee Bike Design at VCU

Here in Richmond Virginia, there are a lot of folks who use biking as their main form of transportation. Sustainable Technology Institute (STI) loves opportunities where we can collaborate with like-minded people trying to add solar energy to unique projects. One such project came to us from a…

NABCEP Training

NABCEP Training

Here at STI, we are installing solar and we are training others. Our NABCEP Entry level offerings are very popular here at our central Virginia headquarters. Being located in Richmond City’s Historic Museum District, we are very near I64 and I95. We have folks come in from for training from all…

SolarEdge “StorEdge” Inverter and the Tesla Powerwall

SolarEdge “StorEdge” Inverter and the Tesla Powerwall

The Sustainable Technology Institute just installed Central Virginia’s first “StorEdge” inverter for a client who lives on Lake Anna near Fredericksburg, Virginia. The 10kw install will provide this large home with a majority of its energy needs. And when this client’s Tesla battery pack…

Solar Tiny House

Solar Tiny House

  Over this past summer, Sustainable Technology Institute was approached by a fellow Richmonder who wanted an off-grid tiny house. We had the opportunity to work on this very unique project and by project’s end- the idea of a hybrid energy generation approach had been accepted, but there…

Clean Energy through Solar Power.  SolarRVA

Clean Energy through Solar Power. SolarRVA

Photovoltaic (PV) panels convert sunlight into electricity. We offer installations for grid-tied, battery based, and hybrid systems.  Installing solar panels on your home or office is currently an excellent investment with a fast return on investments (ROI).  With prices at an all time low, we…

EARTH DAY 2016 RICHMOND, VA.  Go Solar with SolarRVA.com

EARTH DAY 2016 RICHMOND, VA. Go Solar with SolarRVA.com

With Earth Day on the horizon once more we must pay respect to those contributing to our city’s well being and those invoking the true spirits of Earth Day through festivities. This day is meant for celebration, education, and overall enjoyment of the world we all share.  I hope you will join…

Satisfied STI Solar Customer | Galax, VA

Today we are highlighting yet another happy client’s experience with a recently installed solar system.  The Summey’s, from Galax, VA, now have an $8 electric bill.  Last year the Sustainable Technology Institute traveled from Richmond to beautiful Galax, VA to take on the 5kw solar install….

Call Us Today:

Interested in solar for your home or business?  Contact STI for more information…

Rivers Edge Elementary

  The Sustainable Technology Institute enjoys participating in carnivals and festivals in our community to help spread the word on clean energy.  Here we are gearing up for the Rivers Edge Elementary Spring Carnival last…

STI Design: Tandem Electric Bike

Voila!  Today we are featuring the Sustainable Technology Institute’s first electric tandem bike which will be available to purchase coming soon.  While a tandem bike may look daunting compared to an everyday street bike, they are actually quite simple to operate and offer a unique experience….

Earth Day 2015

Come join the Sustainable Technology Institute this Saturday from 12-7 as we gather in Manchester for RVA Earth Day!  Be prepared to enjoy local music, food, and retailers as we relax and enjoy a day dedicated to celebrating our planet.  Hope to see you…

Turks and Caicos

Earlier this month the co-founders of STI partnered with Longwood University on an adventure to Grand Turk Island located in the Turks and Caicos Islands.  The mission of the trip was to educate and train college students about solar power and wind energy and how both would greatly benefit the…

St. Paddy’s Palooza

  Come and join the Sustainable Technology Institute this Sunday, March 15th from 11:00-5:00 at Innsbrook for the St. Paddy’s Palooza!  The festival is free to attend and you can enjoy live music, food, booths, and so much more!  We hope to see you…

Business Plan Competition

Business Plan Competition

Governor Terry McAuliffe announced last year that he will be hosting a world class business plan competition this coming spring and summer.  In a few words from McAuliffe, “This competition is one piece of my administration’s efforts to systematically generate more startup enterprises in…

Longwood University

Longwood University

As the alma mater of several employees here at STI, we thought it only appropriate to highlight some of the ways Longwood University promotes sustainability on their campus.  Click on the link below to find out more! http://www.longwood.edu/materielmanagement/35743.htm…

New Location for STI

New Location for STI

It’s official!  Today the Sustainable Technology Institute moved to 2512 West Main Street.  We are very excited to be at such a great location in the heart of Richmond and the change of pace for our company.  We hope you will come by and see us!

Solar Edge Monitoring

Solar Edge Monitoring

STI has been using Solar Edge for some time now and wanted to show you a live system with real time monitoring. Solar edge gives the ability to see what you are producing right now and many options for past performance. If there is ever a problem the system alerts you and makes tracking down…

We’re Moving !

We’re Moving !

We’re Moving ! That’s right, we are very excited to announce that our company will be relocating to 2512 West Main Street! Our business is growing and stronger than ever , and Sustainable Technology Institute is looking forward to being in the heart of Richmond at such a great location. Stay…

Solar Thermal Space Heating

Solar Thermal Space Heating

  Solar thermal technology isn’t as popular as solar electric panel use, but the benefits solar thermal water heating are great in regard to providing comfortable non-fossil fuel derived heat for your home or business. Solar electric panels are also called photovoltaic panels (PV) and…

STI Duct Testing and Sealing

STI Duct Testing and Sealing

Do your ducts in your home or business look like the one in this picture? Ducts that are disconnected or torn can leak large amounts of air which be a real money guzzler. Now is the time to repair these leaks and get your money’s worth from your system. Call the Sustainable Technology Institute…

A quick ROI for solar in VA is finally here!

A quick ROI for solar in VA is finally here!

Tax credits, REC’s, and new solar technology has brought solar to the point we’ve all been waiting for in Virginia for a long time. And that’s a quick return on investment! Only a couple of years ago, clients interested in solar were primarily concerned with having the systems installed as a…

Virginia Crawlspaces

Virginia Crawlspaces

If your house was built with a crawlspace then the area under your house is not all too different from a bear cave. It’s a dirty, dark, smelly space with various bugs and animals living in it. Because of these conditions the majority of us don’t even consider the crawlspace as part of our…

STI Wickham St. Informational Video Tour

STI Wickham St. Informational Video Tour

Zak takes us on a tour of our location on Wickham Street. A big thank you goes to Frankie K for doing such a great job on filming and editing this for us. Unfortunately this was taken just after the fire that destroyed a large part of our facility and set us back a few months. We are in the…

Performance of our Newly Installed Solar Thermal Heating System

Performance of our Newly Installed Solar Thermal Heating System

After finishing the final plumbing of our solar thermal array, we have been anxious to get some sunny days to observe how well the panels will heat our 500 gallon storage tank.  So far, we have only been available to measure temperatures throughout the day on some partly cloudy days and we have…

Compressing and Storing Biogas at STI

Compressing and Storing Biogas at STI

STI’s research team is currently working on a system to compress and store biogas that is created in our anaerobic digester.  Others who have used anaerobic digestion fertilizer for hydroponic systems have found that storing the abundance of created methane is a difficult obstacle to overcome. …

Waste Vegetable Oil (WVO) Collection from local Restaurants

Waste Vegetable Oil (WVO) Collection from local Restaurants

STI has begun collecting WVO from local Richmond Restaurants, with the intention of furthering the company’s endeavor of operating as sustainably as possible.  There are future plans to convert some company vehicles to have the ability to run on the collected veggie oil.  Also, a boiler will be…

No Clean Energy Tax Credit This Year

No Clean Energy Tax Credit This Year

While Virginia’s largest electricity utility enjoyed smooth sailing in the halls of the General Assembly, renewable-energy advocates struggled to get a foothold this session. Dominion Virginia Power — which relies overwhelmingly on fossil-fuel and nuclear power generation — easily achieved its…

New License Requirements In Virginia

New License Requirements In Virginia

Did you know that the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulations requires Energy Auditors to be licensed. Any person or company who provides energy audits are now required to be in compliance with DPOR. This means that you will need to have a certificate showing you have been…

Air Sealing & Cellulose Insulation

Air Sealing & Cellulose Insulation

As part of our energy services STI provides Air Sealing & Cellulose Insullation Installation. Right now we are working on a 10,000sf job at Third Presbyterian Church in Henrico VA. Our team first seals all of the bypasses in the ceiling and around the top plates. Then we use our Cool…

Solar financing

Solar financing

So not everyone may have the money to put down on a large solar array. But what if there was a bank that would finance your system at a 0% interest rate? Well in recent months, STI has partnered with Enerbank Bank to offer our customers this option. With the incredibly high efficiency and low…

First city inspected solar system installed in Yorktown, VA

First city inspected solar system installed in Yorktown, VA

STI performed the first solar installation inspected by the city of Yorktown. The 3000 watt system was quickly installed with microinverters mounted under each of the solar panels. The use of microinverters for grid-tied systems allows for an easy installation with high performance. Enphase…

Galax Solar Job

Galax Solar Job

STI recently installed a large solar system in Galax, VA. The 5kw solar electric system was accompanied by a solar thermal heating system to further decrease the client’s need for grid-tied power. As usual, our company recommended and installed all American made panels and components. The solar…

Solar Edge Inverter Installation

Solar Edge Inverter Installation

Here is Wil Caton, a co-owner STI, performing the final touches involved with getting the system running after the panels were installed. The smaller inverter seen in this picture takes up less space and the new solar technology behind the design of this system provides for easy and quick…

Open House

Open House

May 17th Open House Battery Park Farms opens its doors and hosts an all-day barbeque and fish-fry, where tours of the farm will be held and food and beverages will be provided to participants.  The event will take place on Saturday, May 17th from 12pm-5pm.[gallery columns=”8″…

Hydroponics System Is Plumbed

Hydroponics System Is Plumbed

The Hydroponics System fed with Anaerobic Digestate is finally plumbed. We finished it today and were able to flush and wash the media. Tomorrow we will be filling the trough and getting the system tuned. Stop by and hang out with us to see whats going on.

STI Has Bees

STI Has Bees

Battery Farms is excited to welcome Honeybees to our location this spring! This important species is on the verge of dying off due to ‘Colony Collapse Disorder’. Click the link to find out more on what’s killing them and small changes you can do to help prevent them from becoming extinct….

BPI & NABCEP Training

BPI & NABCEP Training

STI is the only training center in Virginia that is accredited through both the Building Performance Institute (BPI) and North American Board of Certified Energy Practicioners (NABCEP).  BPI specializes in providing certifications to energy auditing professionals.  NABCEP offers certifications…

Systems Are Coming Together

Systems Are Coming Together

Showing a few more pics of our progress on the Aquaponics and Hydroponics systems going in at Battery Park Eco Farms. Stop by to see what we have going on.

Solar Thermal Panel Project Is Complete

Solar Thermal Panel Project Is Complete

STI has just finished our 5 panel 8×8 solar thermal system. On peak days the system will deliver 300,000 to 400,000 Btu’s that will provide heat to our Aquaponics, Hydroponics, Anaerobic Digestion and Hot Water Heater. STI will be working on getting these panels certified by the SRCC and put…

We Are In A Food Desert

We Are In A Food Desert

STI’s location in the 23222 zip code of north Richmond is in a food desert. Food deserts are defined  as parts of the country vapid of fresh fruit, vegetables, and other healthful whole foods, usually found in impoverished areas. This is largely due to a lack of grocery stores, farmers’…

Big Day at The Office

Big Day at The Office

All hands on deck today getting us real close to finishing our projects. Cochran, Zak and Lee finished four out of five of the Solar Thermal Collectors that are mounter to the rack and ready to be plumbed Greg and Wil worked on the Aquaponics and Hydroponics plumbing and got the beds prepped…

Erin’s Time At STI

Erin’s Time At STI

I began working at STI back in August and was immediately exposed to a plethora of priceless knowledge. It began by finding out ways of making homes and businesses more energy efficient. I then watched how our solar carts were built, and was a part of learning the basics of sealing HVAC…

Thermosiphoning as a Viable Option for Solar Thermal Heat Delivery

Thermosiphoning as a Viable Option for Solar Thermal Heat Delivery

Thermosiphoning as a Viable Option for Solar Thermal Heat Delivery Hot water rises. When a solar thermal panel is placed lower than the hot water tank, the sun heats the water, and a natural flow occurs that delivers the sun’s heat to the water tank within your house. A standard solar thermal…

STI Uses Bioreactors For Fertilizer and Heat For Greenhouse

STI Uses Bioreactors For Fertilizer and Heat For Greenhouse

Small-Scale Anaerobic Digester Design Anaerobic Digesters, or Bioreactors, convert waste into methane. Methane is the primary constituent of natural gas. After the waste has been converted and the gas has been captured, the end product is called digestate. Digestate is the “rocket fuel” of all…

Solar Air Heating Repair

Solar Air Heating Repair

We were called by a client who had a solar air heating system that had been in operation since the 80′s. They had enjoyed the “free heat” for so many years, but after 30 years, the system needed some maintenance.  The homeowner said that after tax credits, they had paid only a couple hundred…

Anaerobic Digestate for Hydroponic Nutrients

Anaerobic Digestate for Hydroponic Nutrients

Sustainable Technology Institute (STI) is a small business and research center that has created a novel concept that involves anaerobically digesting food waste and using the digestate product as the nutrient for urban hydroponic vegetable cultivation. Although scientists have studied the use…

Grow more food in less space with Aquaponics

As the cost of food rises, people are looking for ways to make their budget stretch further and feed their families. There was a time not so long ago, where many families had a backyard garden and ate fresh produce every day. They also had a backyard chicken coup and could eat fresh eggs daily….

STI Is Now on Instagram!

If you’re tired of seeing the same selfies every day and want to be kept up to date on what’s going on at STI, follow us @stirichmond. We’ll show how we’re working to improve our location, the progress of our current projects and give you previews of our exciting future endeavors here at  607…

STI Goes Solar

STI Goes Solar

Sti has recently installed a 2.4 Kw Battery Backed Up Solar Panel System. The system will help cut our energy costs and carbon footprint. If the power goes out in our area the battery backup will keep our aquaponics and hydroponics running. Sti is passionate about renewable energy and would…

Aquaponics in Progress

After my trip to Denver to attend the Aquaponics Farming Course we are now ready to finish our systems. Take a look at the pictures and follow us in the progress. Give us a call and stop by to see what we have going on.[gallery type=”slideshow”…

STI Farm

STI Farm

We need to come up with a name for our farm here at the STI location. Help us out and if we pick your name you will receive a free family pack of our first harvest. Some of my ideas… Battery Park Aquaponics Local Loop Farms Aqualoop Farms Anello Locale Acuaponia Ecopark Aquaponics [gallery…

Aquaponic Farming Course

I have been really lucky to be able to attend the Aquaponics Farming Course with GrowHaus and Green Acre Farms. These guys are making a difference in the industry. Check them out and stop by our farm to learn more. http://www.aquaponicfarmingcourse.com/  …

STI Celebrates Our One Year Anniversary

February 6th marks our 1 year anniversary at STI. It has been a great year with many changes. We started out with a focus on training and certification in solar and building performance. Just a few months in to it we saw that there was a great need for our services. Adapting to the needs of our…

STI has just been approved as a BPI Test Center

For all those interested in taking a BPI (Building Performance Institute) class and getting you certification it just got easier. STI has just been approved as a test center. So now you can take the class and the test at the same location. We can offer the Building Analyst (BA) and Residential…

STI Installs the first Dominion Power Solar Purchase in Yorktown

We were pleased to have a customer as great to work with as the Mack’s, but to find out that we were the first company to install a solar pv system that qualified for the new Dominion Power Solar Purchase Program was a nice bonus. Dominion’s program net meters the system to be able to record…

Last Solar Panel Install Of 2013

STI New Location

Sustainable Technology Institute is moving their office to Battery Park. Why? Because we believe that revitalizing our region’s core is the most sustainable choice.  And of course the new location also provides us with a ¾ acre lot for our new urban agriculture center.  The new center will be…

Your duct work needs help America!

A customer called to schedule an appointment because their air-conditioner couldn’t keep up during the hottest winter months. Upon visiting the site and conducting the usual inspections and tests, it was found that the return air from the central air system had an enormous leak in the attic….

Anaerobic Digester Pics

Anaerobic Digester Pics

Here are a few pics showing the process of building the 1500 gallon Anaerobic Digester at Shalom Farms. This digester will supply not only the best super fertilizer but also the methane gas will be used to heat the green house.    

Shalom Farms 1500 Gallon Anaerobic Digester

Shalom Farms 1500 Gallon Anaerobic Digester

Our company is currently building an anaerobic digester at Shalom Farms to provide fertilizer and methane gas for greenhouse heating.  Volunteering our time to help non-profit organizations is a must- being that the spread of renewable energy knowledge is of utmost importance in these days of…

Solar Thermal Panel Heats Richmond Greenhouse

In these days of high priced heating options for greenhouses, more and more people are learning about alternatives to propane and electric heaters. Solar energy can have a short return on investment for greenhouse heating. Yes, a sunny February day may have your growing space warm during the…

An Appleseed is a cult word for a backyard biodiesel processor

[wp_lightbox_prettyPhoto_video link=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kw-R6eoARxs” width=640 height=360 description=”An Appleseed is a cult word for a backyard biodiesel processor” source=”http://www.sustainabletechnologyinstitute.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/biodiesel-processor.jpg” title=”An…

Sustainable Technology Institute opens new location

Sustainable Technology Institute opens new location

Sustainable Technology Institutehas just opened a new location on Bremo Road near Libbie and Broad in the Richmond area. Our new facility has two large classrooms and ample lab space for hands-on training. We also have a “green space” next to the building where students can test solar PV and…