Business Wire

ELM and Naked Energy Announce First North American Deployment of Innovative Solar Technology to Heat Water

3 Mins read

Groundbreaking approach to water heating Creighton University’s newest residence hall provides energy savings and frees grid capacity

OMAHA, Neb.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Creighton University’s Graves Hall is the first North American facility to use VirtuHOT HD, a next-generation solar thermal collector from Naked Energy, implemented by ELM Solar of ELM Companies, Naked Energy’s North American distributor. VirtuHOT HD will significantly save on water heating costs and assist the university in achieving sustainability goals. The new residence hall recently opened for the fall 2023 semester and is home to 400 first-year students at Creighton’s Omaha campus.

“Solar thermal technology has enormous potential because it takes the task of heating water, a major source of energy cost in any building, off the power grid, resulting in savings for the building owner and less stress on the grid,” said ELM Founder and Chairman Lee C. Graves. “The Naked Energy and ELM teams have done an outstanding job designing and installing this game-changing technology.”

Placed on the roof of Graves Hall, VirtuHOT HD collectors use the sun’s power to heat the dormitory’s water while saving money on energy costs. VirtuHOT HD‘s low profile (measuring 10.4 inches high) and modular design feature angled absorber plates that collect more sunlight than traditional solar panels. This maximizes the potential of the roof space by generating more energy per square foot than any other solar technology. The installation at Graves Hall is expected to generate 237,000 BTU (69.9 kW) of thermal energy.

“Creighton presented us with an ambitious goal, and the new system at Graves Hall will help the university meet its sustainability goals and control costs. We’re proud that this is the first North American deployment of VirtuHOT HD,” said Naked Energy CEO Christophe Williams. “We look forward to working with ELM Solar to expand Virtu’s rollout in North America, so we can continue decarbonizing heat and changing energy for good.”

The U.S. Department of Energy says energy use for heating water accounts for around 20% of household energy use, and grid connection requests grew by 40% in 2022. As grids across the country are put under increasing strain, the risk of grid instability rises in tandem. Innovative solar thermal systems such as VirtuHOT HD take water heating demands off-grid, freeing up grid capacity for other uses.

“To partner with ELM and Naked Energy in bringing this innovative approach to energy conservation to our campus in Omaha is a tremendous opportunity for Creighton University,” said Creighton University President the Rev. Daniel S. Hendrickson, SJ, Ph.D. “This breakthrough technology aligns seamlessly with our Sustainable Creighton Initiative by putting us in an even stronger position to care for our common home. With the installation of the VirtuHOT HD system, we are creating a cutting-edge campus environment that will help our students and planet thrive into the future.”


Started in 1998, ELM Companies develops innovative and sophisticated solutions for energy and utility services that assure your compliance with regulations, improve your grid reliability, and streamline distribution. Over the past 25 years, ELM has continuously built innovative technology solutions through our direct utilities experience and understanding with:

  • 1100+ fleet servicing over 3,000,000 tickets per year across the U.S. utility industry.
  • MicroGrid energy storage solutions implemented for utility companies, the U.S. Military, and large enterprises.
  • Precise, cloud-based utility mapping that provides instant access to your infrastructure data.
  • Technology that offers the world’s highest energy density solar equipment available on the market.

For more details, contact

ELM Companies: | ELM MicroGrid: | ELM Solar:


Naked Energy is a British design and engineering business, leading the global innovation in solar thermal and solar PVT. Naked Energy’s mission is to change energy for good, by decarbonizing heat, the largest global energy end use in buildings across the world. Naked Energy’s high energy density solutions are capable of decarbonizing heat cost-effectively and with limited space; its solar PVT technology delivers up to 3.5 times the carbon savings per m2 in comparison to conventional solar PV. For more details, contact


Creighton University, founded in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1878, is one of 27 Jesuit colleges and universities in the U.S. The Omaha campus has more than 8,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students among nine schools and colleges. No other university its size offers students such a comprehensive academic environment with personal attention from faculty-mentors. The new health sciences campus in Phoenix, which will accommodate nearly 1,000 students by 2025, is the largest expansion outside of Omaha in Creighton’s history and positions the University as one of the largest Catholic health professions educators in the country. Creighton is ranked in the top third of National Universities by U.S. News & World Report.



ELM: Kelly Stickelmaier

+1 309-258-9079 |

Naked Energy: Danielle Todd, Harpswood

+44 7399 559504 |