NIH Policy Promotes Energy Conservation and 
Improved Reliability for Ultra-Low Temperature Freezers
NIH Manual Chapter 26101-16 details how to manage ultra-low temperature (ULT) freezers at the NIH to increase freezer reliability and decrease energy consumption. 

The NIH will preserve and protect research materials in cold storage in an energy efficient manner. 
This policy:
This picture shows an Ultra-Low Temperature freezer with an open door.

(1) Requires the selection of energy efficient ULT freezers when acquiring new units;
(2) Requires all ULT freezers to be listed in the NIH Business System, and when no longer needed, disposed of according to property disposal requirements;
(3) Requires regular maintenance to be performed on all ULT freezers; and
(4) Directs the placement of ULT freezers in locations that are adequately ventilated, temperature controlled, and away from excessive foot-traffic.

This policy further establishes the procedures for the inspection of NIH facilities to ensure compliance with this policy; to note deficiencies; and to remedy non-compliant occurences.

NIH Freezer Challenge 

This picture shows a freezer playing basketball to emphasize that there will be a freezer challenge.

The NIH is challenging labs to go beyond the NIH Freezer Policy to further reduce energy consumption and operating costs from freezers at the NIH.  Labs are provided with challenge initiatives and each lab can choose what inititiaves they will undertake.  For more information on the challenge and how you can participate, visit the NIH Freezer Challenge Page

Special Thanks
The Office of Research Facilities with generous unwavering support from Institutes and Centers and entities within the Office of the Director developed Manual Chapter 26101-16. Many thanks to all those who supported this effort.