Whirlpool Receives $20M in DoE Grants to Produce Smart Appliances

Oct 30 2009 | 9:44am ET

Whirlpool Corp has received $19.33 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) to develop smart residential appliances.

Smart appliances allow customers to schedule energy use for off-peak times, lowering consumer costs and reducing peak electricity demand.

Whirlpool markets appliances under the brand names Whirlpool, Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Brastemp, Consul and Bauknecht. The appliance maker expects to have 1 million smart-grid compliant dryers ready for sale by 2011.

Whirlpool will receive its funding over a two-year period, and plans to match the funds. By 2015, the company says it will no longer manufacture “dumb” appliances, a promises that hinges on two factors.

“This commitment is dependent on two important public-private partnerships: the development by the end of 2010 of an open, global standard for transmitting signals to, and receiving signals from, a home appliance; and appropriate policies that reward consumers, manufacturers, and utilities for using and adding these new peak-demand reduction capabilities,” Whirlpool said in a statement.

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