CORDIS - EU research results

Lift Energy Saving System for Residential Buildings (LESS)

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - LESS (Lift Energy Saving System for Residential Buildings (LESS))

Reporting period: 2015-05-01 to 2015-07-31

In Europe alone, lifts are used 1 billion times every single day. Such constant daily use means vast amounts of electricity are consumed over and over again every second with no means to harness the potential energy generated. In fact, estimates show that total annual power requirements for the European lift stock is about 18TWh and the contribution of a lift system to the overall electricity consumption of a building is about 3-5%. The global objective of this project is to develop, test and industrialize a low-cost system that captures energy from lifts and other renewable energy sources to intelligently store, reuse and supply energy to power common goods in residential buildings.
Our general objective can be further developed in the next four sub-systems:
- Product development and production of a low-cost energy recovery system based on our proven lift energy recovery technology.
- A hybrid energy storage system that enable autonomous operation of the microgrid system and extends battery service life.
- Connector elements to support microgeneration sources and different electrical loads to add versatility to the system.
- A remote performance monitoring system to simplify supervision and maintenance tasks.
More than 4.5 million lifts are currently installed in Europe of which more than 3 million are for residential use. This is the target market of the new developed product, being not limited only to the existing lifts but extending also to the new installations. According to sector statistics, it is estimated that in average near 80,000 new electric lifts were annually installed in Europe in the last years, showing a positive trend.
Epic power developed the Phase 1 with the objectives of assessing in depth the target market, evaluating the technical feasibility and defining the product accurately, establishing partnerships and setting up a reviewed business plan. The European context as well as several target national markets were analysed in order to assess the business opportunities and risks considering the particular factors affecting the adoption of LESS in each of these markets. The technical feasibility study, which included state of the art analyses, technology assessment and cost analyses, concluded with a revision of the initial concept of a hybrid energy storage unit, a complete description of the product features and a specification of technical requirements. An action plan for product development and product validation was defined. A thorough competitor analysis and patent search were also conducted concluding that we are bringing something really new to the market. Thanks to this work we were able to validate and review our previous assumptions leading us to adjust our marketing and sales strategy for a successful exploitation of LESS. In this sense, work on branding and communication issues was also done in order to accelerate market traction.
We at Epic Power want to develop, produce and sell a smart, innovative and environmentally-friendly product that captures and stores energy generated by the lift and renewable sources to then supply the energy for future demand in the building. We aim at contributing to make residential buildings more self-sustainable.
The low-cost version of this system which will be specially addressed to the residential market responds to a growing tendency and demand from EU electricity consumers to have more options for reducing their carbon footprint and have a better control of their energy consumption and expenditure. This is a unique opportunity for Epic Power to expand our business by producing and selling an innovative product to the thriving residential market and to establish fruitful relationships with stakeholders in the lift and energy sector.