Outbound Continuous Insulation Is Key To Energy Efficiency

Typical insulation in commercial and residential building over the past 60 years or so has been insulation placed in the wall between studs or in interior cavities. However, studies are now showing that the best insulation strategy is to place it outbound or outside the wall. This design offers a continuous blanket of protection that does not allow energy to be lost at wall and studs joints where interior insulation does not exist.

Currently continuous insulation of the building enclosure is considered to be the best insulation strategy. Continuous Insulation is defined by ASHRAE 90.1-2004 as “insulation that is continuous across all structural members without thermal bridges”” The most commonly used insulation in buildings today is called cavity insulation, which is not considered to be continuous insulation due to the thermal breaks in the insulation caused by the wall studs.
As more focus is put on increasing the energy efficiency of the built environment, many recent updates to the model energy and building codes as well as voluntary sustainable building programs emphasize the need for continuous insulation and high effective R-values across the building envelope as a means to achieving the best insulation strategy for energy efficiency.

Exterior insulation and finish systems (EIFS) are the best continuous insulation systems available today. Introduced in the 1960″s and currently being used worldwide, they have been proven to be both effective and durable. EIFS provide a continuous insulation layer across the exterior wall surface. It is the best insulation as it provides 100% coverage of the walls, eliminating thermal bridging that can occur through the wall studs. Traditional insulation cannot provide continuous insulation as it is between-the-stud insulation, effective only where it is present.

In addition, EIFS can be used for energy efficient retrofits of existing building stock, with minimal disturbance to the building occupants. An EIFS retrofit provides continuous insulation to the existing building, vastly improving energy performance.

With rising energy demands, the need for effective products cannot be understated. An airtight building enclosure that incorporates exterior continuous insulation in addition to cavity insulation is the best insulation strategy for energy efficiency. As such the choice of an exterior insulation and finish system can help provide the best insulation for energy efficient structures.

Engage energy efficiency in your home with new double glazing windows.

If you are looking for double glazing Windows Essex can offer you Dolphin Windows whom have over 20 years experience in the installation of windows, doors and conservatories. Dolphin Windows offer quality workmanship and professional installation by highly trained qualified experts.

Double glazing windows are available in many different styles to suit period properties or for personal taste and requirements. All windows come with the latest security features, alongside being highly energy efficient. Double glazing windows keep noise out meaning the noise of passing large vehicles will be a lot quieter than they would be if you were to have standard windows in your home. Dolphin Windows supply precise windows to fit perfectly in your home alongside tilt windows which open in a traditional manner and also tilt inwards allowing the circulation of air. Double glazing windows will keep the heat out during the summer months and will keep the heat in during the winter months ensuring your home is kept at a temperature you like.

If you would like to add value to your home Dolphin Windows recommending adding a conservatory which is aesthetically pleasing and has the energy efficiency many people are looking for today, Dolphin Windows’ outstanding conservatories are guaranteed to please and at competitive prices anyone can afford a high quality Dolphin Windows conservatory. Dolphin Windows have the latest in conservatory windows so that you are able to match the style of your conservatory to the style of your home. A conservatory helps bring the outside in with large windows giving your home a nice summary feel at all times of the year, a conservatory allows you to enjoy your beautiful garden on days where it’s just a bit too windy to enjoy being sat outside and in winter you can enjoy the view of the perfect snow in your garden.

The leading experts at Dolphin Windows offer a professional service in the installation of conservatories and double glazing windows. Dolphin Windows tailor their services to the needs of the individual customer to ensure you receive the best service that they can offer you.

Dolphin Windows are members of Network VEKA meaning they offer a ‘peace of mind’ service. Members of Network VEKA have an excellent quality service and lots of experience in the installation of double glazing windows and conservatories. Homeowners can trust Dolphin Windows knowing they are backed by a stable and powerful national organisation.

Help Your Business Save Through Energy Efficiency Examples

The Pew Center for Global Climate Change highlights why firms need to be proactive when it comes to finding ways to become energy efficient and should not wait for any regulation that will be compelled by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In a recent report, the Center has concluded that there are a number of attitudinal and reputational advantages for such initiatives that lead to financial benefits.

Companies should start to consider some examples of energy efficiency should they wish to find ways of improving their market position. According to Pew, those companies that strive to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions as a core part of the business strategy benefited in many different ways. So long as clear goals were established and the system was set up to collect data and manage the outcome, clear results could be demonstrated.

It is emphasized by the Pew Center for Global Climate Change that companies need to be proactive in seeking energy efficient practices, and need not wait for any EPA-imposed regulation to compel such. A recent report that was issued by the body offers a clearer picture. Companies which are studied by the Center has cited some important reputational, attitudinal, and financial benefits.

As energy use can account for one of the largest costs in a business operation, cost savings on energy consumption can be a very hot topic in the board rooms. Decision makers in various organizations are finding energy efficiency examples are realizing that targets that are easy to achieve would actually result to financial savings which might be difficult to duplicate anywhere else.

Organizations are now seeking options for energy efficiency like ceiling insulation, having efficient doors and windows, installation of motion detectors, upgrading of lighting systems, among other energy efficiency examples, as a way to help generate savings through power use reduction which consequently helps curtail carbon emissions and.

Those who are taking early actions in their commitment to energy efficiency could also help in leading to maintenance cost reductions. These improvements, if communicated well to staff, lead to an uptick in morale. In short, the organization wins all the way down the line and can maneuver itself into a position to enhance its reputation.

Building stock typically lasts for an average of fifty years and many companies find themselves occupying buildings that are far from efficient. The federal government is actually supportive of retrofitting of already existing assets and appliances by providing financial grants for such initiatives.

Companies must become more aware of the growing move toward carbon regulation. Carbon, being a byproduct of fossil fuel produced energy, is a direct contributor to global warming and the majority of scientists agree is responsible for accelerating climate change. By becoming more energy efficient, an organization can help to avoid any potential direct carbon taxation in the future.

There are many examples of energy efficiency in action and plenty of reasons for the typical organization to conform. Management must make sure that they are in possession of accurate and up-to-date information, generated in real-time, so that they can ensure that all assets are operating to peak efficiency, cutting back their raw energy costs to a minimum.

Lessons Learned From A Failed Energy Efficiency Project

INTRODUCTION
You would think that energy efficiency is relatively simple: perform an energy audit, install the retrofits and then reap the energy savings. Unfortunately, it doesn”t always work that way. We performed an energy assessment of several stores of a major retail chain in the San Francisco Bay Area and identified a handful of low-cost retro-commissioning measures that had very promising potential. We quantified the expected savings and costs and returned after the project was installed. We then measured the savings using various methods and found either minimal or negative savings. The problem we discovered was that on nearly every measure, the contractors had repaired the hardware, but through various means had ensured that energy savings would not occur. This paper provides an account of the failed project at one store and the steps we took to remedy it. Specifically, this paper stresses the importance of Measurement and Verification and Commissioning of the retrofits.

DESCRIPTION OF THE BUILDING
The store, located in San Francisco, belongs to a well-known national retailer, whose name we will not divulge. The store is an aggregate of 3 buildings which have been joined together to comprise almost 1,000,000 square feet, of which over half is selling floor. Stock rooms and offices comprise the remainder of the space. The different buildings range between 8 and 11 stories tall.

The three buildings comprising the store were built at different times from the 1920s to the 1980s. Originally the buildings had different air handling, chilled water and hot water systems. Over the years, through energy conservation and facility improvement measures, the chilled water systems have been merged into one system.

There were no operating boilers in the store. Steam is provided to the store by an external vendor. Hot water is supplied to multi-zone air handling units and perimeter reheats in some areas of the store via heat exchangers.
There is one common cooling plant which houses two 500 ton centrifugal chillers (2004) which run all year. Chilled water is supplied to the Air Handling Units (AHUs) via primary/secondary chilled water loops. During the hottest months, both chillers run at around 90% full load””this happens about 5 days/yr. During the cooler months, one chiller runs at about 40% full load. If you have been to San Francisco you probably know that even in summer a typical day only reaches about 60 degrees . A properly designed and operating building in San Francisco should not need mechanical cooling most of the year, instead relying upon outside air to meet its cooling needs. This was obviously not the case .

A utility bill analysis identified an out of control building. Figure 1 presents twelve months of average usage per day versus average outdoor temperature. Each point represents a billing period. The superimposed red line represents the statistically insignificant trend. The lack of clear trend indicates that the building is either haphazardly controlled or that energy use varies due to some other variable. We believe mostly the former. During warmer periods (which are not that warm) the store uses more energy, indicating a variable cooling load based upon weather conditions. (An ideal system that uses outside air whenever possible should show a horizontal trend in this 48 to 66 degree temperature range.)

There are over fifty AHUs: a mixture of single zone, multi-zone, and variable air volume units. Each of the three sections contains different types of AHUs.
Electricity Costs for the store were over $2.5M per year. With the economic collapse in the fall of 2008, smart retailers were looking to cut costs wherever possible. One line item that could be cut was utilities. Saving 10% or more could add at least $250,000 to the bottom line.

BACKGROUND OF THE UTILITY PROGRAM
There may be several reasons why California uses less than 50% per capita of the energy than the rest of the country, but one major reason is the aggressive effort of the California Public Utilities Commission to cut energy usage. Commercial ratepayers of the investor owned utilities pay a fee in their utility bills that funds energy efficiency programs. These funds are then channeled to the investor owned utilities to promote energy efficiency. These utilities have over one hundred targeted programs aimed at different vertical markets such as: wineries, retail, hospitals, supermarkets, etc. Often these programs will include free energy audits or retro-commissioning services in conjunction with generous incentives to implement energy efficiency measures. In some cases, the utilities will pay for up to 100% of the cost for implementing the measures. The utilities administer some programs directly and outsource others. The outsourced programs are designed and administered by third party energy consultants.

Quantum Energy Services & Technologies, Inc. (QuEST), an energy consulting firm headquartered in Berkeley, administers a retail program for PG&E which covers the San Francisco Bay Area. This program offers retailers free retro-commissioning studies along with incentives to implement energy conservation measures found. The utilities give incentives to the building owners based upon the amount of energy saved. But in order for energy savings to be recognized by PG&E, these savings need to be measured and verified and then the savings calculations must pass a review by third party reviewers. Nobody gets paid if the work does not pass the third party review. The third party review process is necessary to prevent false claims of savings, or gaming of the system. The reviewers can be tough and require all assumptions to be documented and based upon published standards or guidelines. The drawback of third party review is that some measures are dropped as the Measurement and Verification (M&V) costs would be prohibitively expensive.

QuEST retained our company as a subcontractor to help out with the retail program. Our company performed Retro-Commissioning (RCx) services on 8 stores belonging to this unnamed retailer, and this paper is about one of the stores. However, the same story occurred at most of the stores. It wasn”t one failure, but many.

A NOTE ON THE LEVEL OF RCx RIGOR
RCx is different from energy auditing in that RCx typically involves a more detailed study of the building”s control systems and HVAC systems than energy audits. In addition, RCx typically focuses on repairing, recalibrating and reprogramming, rather than procuring new equipment. Simple paybacks for RCx projects typically are under 2 years. Examples of RCx measures are: repairing inoperable equipment, programming controls, demand control ventilation, and calibrating temperature sensors. Examples of energy audit measures (which are not considered RCx measures) are: installing energy efficient chillers, boilers or package units, converting single zone HVAC systems to variable air volume systems, and installing EMS systems. Energy audit measures often are more expensive and may have longer paybacks. On the other hand, true RCx studies are much more detailed, and thus much more expensive to conduct than energy audits. RCx studies usually involve data logging, functional testing of controls, operator training and post implementation commissioning which repeats much of the data logging and functional testing that was previously done. RCx is criticized by some as too heavy on the analysis, as it can require hundreds of hours of work just to perform the study, whereas energy audits consume much less labor.

In order to make the most efficient use of ratepayer dollars, in QuEST”s RCx program the amount of engineering time was scaled down to minimize the time spent on work that does not directly lead to energy savings. Rather than write commissioning plans, and 100-page Master List of Findings reports, the interim deliverable is instead an Excel workbook that describes the measure, states all assumptions and measured values, and calculates the savings. Equipment is data-logged or trended before and after the implementation of the measures. Calculations are made in Excel so they can be verified by third party reviewers. Written reports come later, but are less extensive than typical RCx reports.

ONSITE INVESTIGATION
Two engineers spent 3 days onsite examining the store”s mechanical systems, uncovering problems, and identifying RCx Measures. Our work to this point was nearly identical to an energy audit.
Once the RCx Measures were identified, the list of RCx Measures was given to the customer who then decided which of them should be pursued. The list also was approved by the third party reviewer.

MEASURES FOUND
We found the store could save about $300,000 in both RCx and Retrofit Measures, which, with incentives offered a simple payback of less than six months. That is 12% of their energy spend. The following measure types were identified and approved by all parties:

Retrofit Measures
1.Install Variable Speed Drives (VSDs) on Multi-Zone Air Handling Units (AHUs).
2.Installation of VSDs on secondary chilled water loops.
RCx Measures
1.Repair economizer control on some air handlers. Many outside air dampers were rusted in place. A two by six was used to prop one open.
2.Repair a small number of faulty VSDs, some of which were in bypass running at 100% fan speed.
3.Reconnect static pressure lines. Some VSDs were running at full speed because the lines running to the static pressure sensors in the ducting had been previously destroyed by contractors.
4.Repair/Replace stuck chilled water valves. These valves were cooling whether the AHUs called for cooling or not. As a result, sales floor temperatures ranged from 62 degrees to 70 degrees.
5.Connect some AHUs to the Energy Management System. These AHUs were running wild and had no control at all.

DATA LOGGING
Once the measures were selected by the customer, QuEST engineers placed data loggers to measure pre-implementation temperatures and power. Temperatures measured included Outside Air Temperature (OAT), Return Air Temperature (RAT), Mixed Air Temperature (MAT) and Supply Air Temperature (SAT). Fan Motor kW were also logged for those units on VSDs. Spot measurements were taken of Fan Motor kW for AHUs that were not on VSDs.

SAVINGS CALCULATION
Energy savings were estimated using bin data simulations. Like-type AHUs were combined. Special care was taken in calculating energy savings to ensure that savings were not double-counted. Each energy conservation measure was modeled assuming the prior measures were already implemented. We integrated the interval data that we collected into the bin data simulations. To do this, we created regressions of our variables (RAT, MAT, SAT, kW) versus OAT. These regressions were used to project RATs, MATs, SATs and kW for other outdoor air temperatures that were not included in our sample.

INSTALLATION
Once we had estimated savings using our bin simulation models and provided measure costs, the customer decided which measures to implement. They then hired contractors to implement the measures. VSDs were installed and repaired, economizer dampers repaired, AHUs connected to the EMS system, etc.

M&V PROVES NO SAVINGS
Once the implementation was completed, QuEST engineers returned to the site and again data logged the same temperatures and power as before. The resulting data, RATs, MATs, SATs and kWs, was again regressed against OAT. Using the regression, RATs, MATs, SATs, and kW values were again extrapolated and placed into the bin simulations.

The resulting calculations demonstrated the unthinkable. Not only were the energy conservation measures we had recommended not saving energy, the affected systems at the store were using more energy than before! Actually, this could be seen from just looking at the interval data. It was obvious that the economizers and variable speed drives were not working as intended. The “repaired” economizers were letting in less outside air than before, and the variable speed drives were still commanding the fans to run at a constant load, but at a higher speed than before.

QuEST alerted the customer that their investments were not saving energy. Facility personnel then investigated the problems, found them, and corrected them.

Even though the contractors had made the economizers operational (as opposed to frozen), the damper actuators were not calibrated correctly. When dampers needed to be fully open, they were not. When dampers needed to be at minimum position, they were not. The variable speed drives were also installed incorrectly. Some wiring and controls issues were resolved and the units started operating as expected. Once these issues were resolved, M&V was performed again. We repeated the data-logging and placed this information into our bin simulations, and again projected the annual savings.
There are many ways energy efficiency projects can go wrong.

“Faulty recommendations
“Poor implementation
“Untrained staff who compromise all the energy conservation measures undertaken

Faulty recommendations may arise from a lack of understanding of how systems operate or should operate. Years of experience, and a good understanding of physics and control theory is necessary to make sound recommendations.

Poor implementation has many causes, but often can be traced to the mindset that having the right equipment will make the difference. But as the lessons learned here illustrate, installing the right hardware is only half the solution. It needs to be integrated into the system and operate according to a logical and beneficial sequence of operations.

The last item is especially troublesome because it is so common. Even if the right hardware is installed and controls optimized, small changes to the sequence of operations made to “fix” local problems may have large consequences on overall system performance over time. Changing supply air temperatures at the air handler to resolve hot or cold complaints may upset the balance of the system and cause problems elsewhere. Professors at Texas A&M University have pointed out that in the absence of continuous monitoring, a building”s performance will fall to the level of the least-trained operator within two years.

HOW TO AVOID FAILED ENERGY EFFICIENCY PROJECTS
There are a couple of ways to avoid projects that fail to produce savings. After equipment is installed, it needs to be commissioned by a third party, not the contractor who implemented the ECMs. Commissioning can be expensive, but it is worth it. However, just because the equipment has been deemed operational by the commissioning agent, that doesn”t mean it is saving what was expected. Commissioning will tell you if the equipment is working as it should. To determine if you are actually saving what was expected, M&V needs to be done on the building. Although M&V can appear as a waste of money to some, it caught this disaster before it was too late.

Unfortunately, building owners often value engineer commissioning and M&V out of their projects and leave themselves open to big disappointments in their energy efficiency projects. M&V is like insurance””sure, it costs money up front, but the reassurance of knowing the project is done correctly should be worth far more than the initial outlay. What other product would you purchase without verifying that you actually received what you paid for? Why should energy efficiency be any different?

CONCLUSION
Unfortunately, energy efficiency isn”t as simple as we would wish. Energy consultants may deliver quality energy audits and RCx studies, but merely implementing sound energy efficiency recommendations does not guarantee energy savings. The weak link is often in the commissioning of the measures to ensure they are doing what they are intended to do.
To avoid underperforming on your energy efficiency measures, we suggest the following three strategies:

1. Commission what you implement with third-party commissioning experts. Commissioning agents are not interested in selling hardware. They are interested in making systems operate at peak performance. They understand physics and control theory and can identify and repair problems quickly.

2. Track your energy savings using M&V. Even using something as simple as utility bill tracking software can provide some insight into building performance. An increase in monthly energy usage when a decrease was expected would have triggered an investigation into the cause. Verifying performance at the system level (as we did), while more difficult and expensive, would have isolated the problem much more quickly and accurately.

3. Provide proper training so that your facility staff doesn”t override or bypass your energy efficiency projects. Although we barely treated this topic in this paper, this is probably the single most effective step you can take. Your staff is the brains behind building operation, despite what EMS vendors may say. Having the smartest control system will do no good if it is operated by the dumbest operators.

Illuminating The Future Of Kitchen Lighting Energy Efficiency By Capitol Lighting

It doesn’t matter if you live in a home with a modern kitchen that has all the fancy upgrades, or one that just has a single overhead light in the center of the room. If you’re not using the latest generation of energy-efficient bulbs, it’s time for a lighting upgrade.

“Kitchen lighting has made great strides in the past couple of years, not just from a design standpoint, but with regards to energy efficiency. So upgrades are definitely worth looking into,” says Joe Rey-Barreau, education consultant for the American Lighting Association (ALA) and an associate professor at the University of Kentucky’s School of Interior Design. He travels the country tracking trends, and one he’s noticed lately is the focus on energy conservation.

“Lighting manufacturers are spending a considerable amount of time, and dedicating a lot of resources to developing fixtures capable of using more energy-efficient light sources than the standard incandescent,” Rey-Barreau says. “And it’s no coincidence that this trend is growing in popularity at a time when energy costs are on the rise,” he says.

As recently as two years ago, the only fixtures available for the kitchen that used the most energy-efficient light sources available today – fluorescents and Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) – were not aesthetically pleasing. In today’s marketplace, however, decorative energy-efficient fixtures are available in every product category, whether you’re looking for something traditional, modern or artsy.

“We know consumers want to capitalize on the fact that compact fluorescent bulbs are approximately three to four times more efficient than incandescent bulbs, and LEDs can be three to 10 times more efficient, so we’ve dedicated a lot of resources to developing new fixtures that utilize the technology,” says Scott Roos, vice president of product design for Juno Lighting Group. “We’ll be introducing an LED under-cabinet unit in the fall that requires just eight watts of energy to provide the same illumination as an 80-watt halogen light source. Our new LED down light will be 40 percent more energy efficient than a compact fluorescent and 75 percent more energy efficient than an incandescent.”

Holtkoetter International, Inc., a manufacturer of residential lighting fixtures based in St. Paul, Minn., plans to release several models of fixtures that use LEDs early next year. But energy-saving products are nothing new for Holtkoetter. “We’ve been offering fixtures that take halogen IRC bulbs, capable of improving energy efficiency by 50 percent, for the last five years,” says company president Paul Eusterbrock.

Infra Red Coating (IRC) bulbs are designed in such a way that the heat they generate can be recycled and turned into light.

Hubbardton Forge, a lighting manufacturer out of Chandler, Vt., meantime has concentrated its efforts on developing decorative fixtures that take compact fluorescents. “We have offerings in every category for decorative fixtures that really enhance what you get out of a compact fluorescent,” says George Chandler, president of Hubbardton Forge.

No matter which of the new technologies you choose to go with, when shopping for energy-efficient fixtures, Rey-Barreau says it is important to look for the Energy Star label. In order to qualify for the Energy Star designation, the product must meet specific performance criteria for energy-efficient performance set by the U.S. Department of Energy.

As for concerns people may have about the quality of light given off by compact fluorescents and LEDs, Rey-Barreau says that “while in the past color rendering may have been a concern, it is no longer a problem. Consumers can rest assured the quality closely matches that of incandescents.”

Today’s advancements are quite impressive, but what does the future hold? Rey-Barreau expects the lighting industry to work hard at getting more products on the shelves that use the most energy-efficient technology developed to date – LEDs. “Right now LEDs are still kind of expensive, but once they become more readily available, the cost will come down significantly,” he says.

Solar Contractors Solare Energy Helping Californians Increase Energy Efficiency

In spite of all available information on the subject, achieving energy efficiency through solar powered systems can still be difficult to achieve without experts who can offer practical advice based on cutting-edge knowledge and years of experience in the field. That’s why many people are now turning to solar power equipment installation contractors such as the experts at Solare Energy, when they require high efficiency solutions that are designed for seamless integration within their home or business.

Headquartered in San Diego County, Solare Energy provides residential, commercial and governmental customers with smart energy solutions that integrate both solar and energy efficiency systems. These solutions help to ensure that clients receive cost-effective, environmentally-friendly and highly efficient energy production systems that provide them with the ideal energy production capacity for their long-term future.

Many of the company’s most prominent customers are governmental contractors. Federal agencies including military facilities and others must meet strict energy management requirements that are outlined within federal statutory laws and regulations. This is outlined by recent policy documents such as the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 and the National Energy Conservation Policy Act which has set in place a concrete set of energy goals that federal facilities are mandated to follow. The goals included with this legislation include: a 30% reduction in energy intensity by 2015, 7.5% of the electricity consumed by the Federal government must come from renewable energy by 2013, and the introduction of a policy whereby federal agencies can only lease space in buildings that have earned the Energy Star label.

Solare Energy now works to help federal agencies to meet these government set mandates by helping specific agencies identify problematic areas and helping them to carry out energy efficient project opportunities. In addition, solar contractors Solare Energy also work with federal agencies to analyze the various financing options that are available to them as a government workforce, including utility service contracts, power purchase agreements and government specific energy incentive programs.

As specialist solar contractors, Solare Energy is also now working with state agencies to ensure that they comply with the recently introduced Green Building Action Plan, which mandates that state buildings in California must be 20% more energy efficient by 2015. The precursor to the Green Building Action Plan, the Green Building Initiative also mandates that state agencies review the benefits of using clean and renewable on-site energy generation technologies in all new buildings or large renovation projects. Solare Energy has been involved, working directly with the California state legislators on a number of key projects, to identify and carry out solar and energy efficiency opportunities within the state. In addition, because of the company’s role as a promoter as well as a pioneer of solar technology, Solare Energy also helps to finance solar projects through the use of third-party solar PPAs [Power Purchase Agreements].

Working to make America a more cost-efficiency energy producing nation, one building at a time, Solare Energy are one of the country’s leaders when it comes to innovative solar energy efficiency technology. Contact the organization today to find out how these industry specialists can help to cut down your energy bills.

China Household Appliance Industry Will Promote The Application Of Energy-saving Technology And…

China Household Appliance Industry Will Promote The Application of Energy-saving Technology and New Materials

As reported, the Twelfth Five-Year Plan scheme draft of GPS Antenna industry has been finished, and it also has asked for advices from enterprises level, it is expected to be reported to the relevant departments in recent period. The applications on energy efficiency, major technologies and new materials will have relative quantitative task indicators. The first draft put forward that China will become a powerful country of making solar panel with 10 years of efforts, and according to this objective, it also has proposed specific economic indicators, technological innovation indicators, quality indicators, energy saving and environmental protection home appliances indicators and international indicators for the Twelfth Five-Year Plan.

In order to lay the foundation for kitchen utensil power, the main task during the Twelfth Five-Year period is to guide the household appliance industry to develop toward the connotative direction through restructuring product structure, industry structure and market structure, as well as distributing the industry reasonably, and achieve the transformation of structural adjustment, industrial restructuring and upgrading and the development digital electronic products mode. As for the main objectives and tasks, the discussion draft also proposed specific measures and policy recommendations.

The person who approach drafting the plan disclosed that, at present Chinese home appliances industry must recognize the status that under the fully competitive environment, more companies are repeating the old way–foreign guidance and domestic follow on the one hand, on the other hand, they are reducing cost and achieving profit through scale management. Therefore, the importance of changing ideas and growth mode must be realized first of all. Many companies appeal to that the relevant departments should increase the policy support on developing digital electronic technology, key parts and components, and change the current situation that some key components of home appliance are controlled by others.

However, according to the draftsman, in the current complete draft, energy saving and environmental protection will be an important theme, at the same time it also has put forward relative quantifiable indicators for the specific tasks of household appliance industry development, such as how much the average energy efficiency is hoped to increase, what kind of core technology will be developed and so on; it is also hoped to increase the speaking right of Chinese home appliance standard system in the international world through guiding the technological innovation, and increase the proportion of world-class appliance brand in the industry. The draftsman also stressed that the plan also has proposed requirements for new materials application, it will encourage people to use more appropriate materials under the consideration of energy saving and environmental protection. The reporters also learned that the major technology research project that related to household appliances industry development is expected to get key support from authority department.

Analysts pointed out that it means some enterprises that take the lead in working hard in energy-saving home appliances technology and participating in researching core technology, upstream materials and components will get greater support. Except paying attention to Haier, Chigo and other whole machine manufacturers, which are innovative on energy efficiency, the compressor equipment manufacturing, new materials and other upstream companies also are worth concerning specially by investors, such as Shuangliang energy-saving, Hesheng new materials and so on.

Above provided by SelectChina.com, and find more information on China Consumer Electronics Manufacturers / China Consumer Electronics Products.

Energy-efficiency Electronics Hardware A bridge Fuel To The Future

Demand for energy continues to be a major topic around the world. Renewable energy sources such as wind, solar or hydro power are increasingly being utilized to provide for that demand. Many States have even recently passed laws raising the minimum renewable usage cap that utility companies must implement into their overall supply. But … we still require escalating amounts of energy for agriculture, industry, and to heat our homes and offices. Emerging as a “bridge fuel” to clean energy and renewable resources, the power electronics industry is poised to span that gap with hardware solutions needed to build intelligent power systems.

The Obama administration plans to spend billions of dollars on power conservation and sustainable energy projects as part of a $787 billion stimulus package which is has focused on energy efficiency. Andrew Fanara, of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program has famously said. “Energy efficiency is the bridge fuel we must build on and must invest in” he stresses “Energy efficiency is the cheapest, cleanest, fastest way to act.”

In part, the administration’s strategy is to use improved energy efficiency as a method of buying time to invest in and explore emerging and clean energy options. With initiatives like the smart power grid gaining traction, the power electronics hardware that makes it all work and its new designs aimed at increasing energy efficiency will be at the core of the plan.

Already, there is huge demand for power efficiency by consumers found an industry survey. And, consumers are willingly paying a premium for electronic hardware that delivers energy efficiency. This trend anticipates a growing number of electronic hardware devices will be utilized, which lowers costs and drives improved energy efficiency. Measured in dollars per watt this high volume of hardware deployment forecasts the efficiency for power electronics may drop to as low as 12 cents per watt by 2013.

The focal point of “smart power” systems and a national smart energy grid has clearly been on the hardware side of the equation. To be successful, in the not to distant future, engineers will also make use of the intelligence provided by software so that the hardware components communicate most effectively to accomplish maximum reduction of power consumption. The know-how exists now for this integrated software, but it is still far from widespread.

Power Profiling is a valuable energy-efficiency tool that granularly identifies the power consumed specifically by HVAC, appliances, networks, lighting etc. and communicates this information to users. A user profile is developed by use of proprietary algorithms that calculate information regarding a structure’s overall usage, and several data points such as the time of day and its energy consumption history.

The purpose of power profiling is to enable users to know exactly what activities or systems are consuming the most power, including how much, and how that consumption is affected by actions they take. Most HVAC and appliances are not yet enabled so numerous hardware metering devices are used throughout the structure, at least an adequate number to demonstrate to the user what the largest power users are and how to limit consumption.

Home Area Networks (HAN) are increasingly communicating with utilities in addition to the traditional media centers and computers. Both utilities and consumer electronics companies are offering and assortment of hardware solutions with methods of pre-programming and remotely controlling home systems such as water usage, heating & cooling, and appliances. With the arrival of “smart” appliances and new wireless network protocols designed specifically for energy-efficiency, many of these hardware solutions communicate to users and utilities over one or more wireless systems.

ZWave for media and home automation

ZigBee chosen by utility companies because of it’s secure protocol, and

EnOcean a European self-powered energy harvesting technology that powers devices without the use of batteries.

Hardware using these wireless protocols can all be controlled from a single point building management system, or a homeowner’s computer. Even though these technologies are still on the leading edge, trends indicates they are very near to wide-scale adoption, enabling buildings to connect to smart grid applications that exponentially increase energy-efficiency.

Advances in alternative energy sources have provided greener ways of producing electricity and the burgeoning energy-efficiency industry is providing a plethora of energy saving hardware devices to help users re-tool . We can reduce energy consumption with these advances and make strides toward energy independence. Consider what T. Boone Pickens says “In additional to putting our security in the hands of potentially unfriendly and unstable foreign nations, we spent $475 billion on foreign oil in 2008 alone. That’s money taken out of our economy and sent to foreign nations, and it will continue to drain the life from our economy for as long as we fail to stop the bleeding.

Projected over the next 10 years the cost will be $10 trillion – it will be the greatest transfer of wealth in the history of mankind.”

“By investing in renewable energy and conservation, we can create millions of new jobs. Developing new alternative energies while utilizing natural gas for transportation and energy generation; securing our economy by reducing our dependence on foreign oil, and keeping more money at home to pay for the whole thing.”

Moving forward with renewables is a must, but it is also a documented fact that this increased capacity will not be enough to meet upcoming demands and provide energy independence. The tremendous strides being made in energy efficiency technologies are to help stem the tide, bridging the gap.

Energy Savings and Energy Star rating on Appliances

What is an Energy Star rating on Appliances?

Shopping for major appliances can be nerve-wracking, particularly when you consider that most household appliances, from refrigerators to dishwashers and garbage disposals, should keep humming for the next 10 to 20 years. In 1992, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) took one part of the worry away. Thats when the governmental group launched Energy Star, a program that singles out appliances that use fewer environmental resources and cost you less to operate. Today, you can spot an Energy Star label on more than just appliances. Office products, building materials, lighting and electronics all carry the logo.

Energy Savings Energy Star appliances are about 20% more energy efficient than ones without the rating. That makes a difference. According to the EPA, in 2009, Energy Star alliances helped Americans save nearly $17 billion on their utility bills. Whats more, using less electricity, which comes from processing coal and natural gasand contributes to greenhouse gases, prevented a significant amount of those environmental hazards from entering the atmospherethe equivalent of taking 30 million cars off the road. Energy Star labels arent difficult to read. Most have a rating that shows how many kilowatt-hours (kWhs) per year the appliance is expected to use. When shopping for a new appliance, look for the lowest number, which means fewer kWhs and more energy efficiency. As a bonus, some Energy Star appliances, such as hot water heaters and heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, qualify for a federal tax credit, which puts even more money in your pocket.

How a product earns an Energy Star label Keep in mind, that Energy Star labels assess energy efficiency, not every aspect of performance. An ice maker on a non-Energy Star refrigerator, for example, could work better than one with the government seal. But what you can be assured from an Energy Star appliance is that it has met or exceeded some strict standards of efficiency set up by the EPA and the U.S. Department of Energy.

At the bare minimum, an Energy Star appliance must provide significant energy savings and be as high-performing as other appliances of its kind. If the Energy Star appliance has a higher sticker price than unlabeled models, it has to prove that you will recoup your investment through savings on your utility bill. And all Energy Star appliances have to prove, via testing, that they actually are energy efficient.

In addition, every type of appliance has individual benchmarks it must meet. For instance, Energy Star dishwashers can use no more than 5.8 gallons of water per cycle, while refrigerators must be 15% more energy efficient than federal standards. One appliance you wont see an Energy Star label on is clothes dryers. Currently, all dryers in the U.S. use just about the same amount of energy so theres no need to compare models.

Energy Efficiency Competency Is Necessary While Appointing A Heating Contractor Madison

Appointing the right HVAC contractor in Madison requires considering various aspects. You want to make sure that the heating and cooling circulation at your home is functioning properly. Since winter is only a few months far, this is the right time to look after the heating systems. A professional service is the best solution. You need to confirm aspects like availability of yearly maintenance contact. In addition, you have to see whether the company can suggest a suitable heating system. The company must be able to install eco friendly HVAC systems. Look for a company that can install the latest geothermal heating system.

Existing systems maintenance

You can save on a new machine by repairing the old one. You need to find a heating contractor service that can look after any HVAC equipment. Look for a company with considerable experience. The present machines at households are not more than 15 years old. That is the optimum life span of these machines. Therefore, look for a company with over 20 years of experience. This way, you can be sure that they can repair any appliance make and model. They must be able to prolong the life of your heating and cooling appliances.

Installing new systems

If you decide to install a new heating system, they must be helpful. Look for a heating contractor Madison who can help you select from leading heat system manufacturers. Check out the availability of eco friendly geothermal systems. They must be able to provide cost effective solutions in choosing new appliances. Confirm the availability of new cooling systems too. The current season sees high demand for air conditioners. You may also want to have a new one. See whether the company can assist you with this.

Considering these aspects can lead you to the right services in Madison. You have to verify any other point that comes to your mind. It can be confusing to decide between buying new and repairing old. Ask about the cost of a new system and the cost of repairing the old one. Repairing may require costly replacement parts. In addition, consider the need for yearly maintenance of the existing system. You can easily compare the charges and reach a decision. Do not forget to confirm the availability of yearly maintenance services. You may also need emergency repairs. See whether they are up to that. Ask about any discounts or promotional offers that can benefit you. The right company can clear all your confusions regarding repairs and installation of HVAC appliances.

Experienced heating contractors Madison can ensure professional care of your HVAC system. You need to confirm certain key aspects before choosing a suitable service. Make sure the service can provide energy efficient solutions in a budget.