Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Energy Efficiency as Clean Energy Solution

Contributed by: Orion Zavalani, Polytechnic University of Tirana

Concerns of global warming, rising oil prices, energy security, and a rapid destruction of natural resources, have caused clean energy solutions to gain worldwide attention. There are different drivers to achieve this goal. One of them is the application of energy efficient technology to increase the bottom line. The integration of information technology in the management of engineering systems of residential and commercial buildings is an example of a
viable energy efficiency product.
1. Introduction

Concerns of global warming, rising oil prices, energy security, and a rapid destruction of natural resources, have caused clean energy solutions to gain worldwide attention. At times, the drivers of this change are grounded in the need to examine the environmental impact of technology. At other times, the drivers are economic – such as the application of energy efficient technology to increase the bottom line [1,2,3].

An element to maximizing clean energy resources is to apply existing technologies in different ways. The lead time to develop an energy efficiency (versus energy producing) product is relatively short, and less capital intensive. Investment opportunities in this market remain viable. The use of information technology for the management and control of energy in residential and commercial buildings through integration of all engineering systems known as Building Automation Systems (BAS) technology is an example of a viable energy efficiency product. BAS enables energy savings by using coordinated control capabilities for management of electrical loads, optimization of equipment utilization and demand, track of real-time power conditions, analyze of power quality and power factor.

This way it combines clever energy savings scenarios with improved performance of the engineering systems of the building. BAS application may construct automatically historical trends to reveal energy waste or unused capacity and verify efficiency improvements and allocate costs. The system also can collect, analyze and disseminate the reliable and detailed supply and demand energy statistics.

Historically BAS have been used since the early 20th century for the automatic control of Heat, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) systems. Today, the indoor climate control remain still the main focus of this technology [3,4,6], but the progress in technology and the reduction of BAS device costs has open the road for other building service systems to benefit from BAS as well. For example, the demand control of lighting systems through BAS can significantly contribute to energy saving [4,5,7].

The energy efficiency of residential and commercial buildings depends majorly on how the various energy-using engineering systems work together rather than depending on the efficiencies of the individual engineering device. Literature reference [4] findings underline that at system level, savings opportunities are generally many times what can be achieved at device level and that these savings can often be achieved at a net investment-cost savings. Depending on the particular structure of the engineering systems of the building, multiple approaches to distribute energy efficiency functionalities are viable [3].

The field of BAS during last decades has been dominated by proprietary solutions. But during the last decade, even market leaders are gradually abandoning proprietary designs pushed by market demand for open systems. The significant feature of open systems is the ability to keep the system design open for future integration requirements. Since building installations are long-lived, system evolution is an important issue [11-18].

To promote and ensure open systems solutions official standards bodies have been created in the United States and in a number of European countries [8,9,10]. Open systems standard protocols which cover BAS applications in their entirety are BACnet, LonWorks and EIB/KNX. They all have achieved considerable significance in the worldwide market (in case of BACnet and LonWorks) or in the European market (in the case of EIB/KNX) and are often chosen by both customers and system integrators for complete system solutions.

Please, find the full version at
http://ijtir.hctl.org/specialedition/June2013/IJTIR_Article_201306005.pdf

Contributor

Organisation

    Orion Zavalani, Polytechnic University of Tirana
    Sheshi "Nene Tereza"
    1000 Tirana
    Albania

Contact

Related information

Programmes

Countries

  • Albania

Keywords

Energy, efficiency, automation, building, technology
Record Number: 130455 / Last updated on: 2016-01-28
Category: Scientific advances
Provider: WIRE
Revision: 0