Instant insight into energy consumption makes energy saving easier
Jul 13, 2009 | Amsterdam Energy display in Amsterdam households encourages energy saving
Nuon, IBM and Cisco are starting a project among 500 Amsterdam households to test an innovative energy management system. The expected energy saving (and hence CO2 reduction) is at least 14 per cent. One of the applications is a user-friendly energy display the size of a small photo frame that gives instant insight into the overall energy consumption and the usage per appliance – thus making it easier for households to monitor and achieve energy saving targets.
The energy display has a wireless connection with the digital gas and electricity meter provided by the grid manager and can be placed anywhere in the home, such as the living room. From there, household members can see how much energy is being used in the home and even per appliance, a washing machine for example. They also get insight into where energy is being wasted due to e.g. stand-by usage. By setting a personal energy-saving target on the energy display, they are then continuously encouraged to save gas and electricity.
Alongside the energy display, the energy management system offers households various other energy-saving applications. The e-wizard, for instance, is a device placed between the socket and appliances that shows the consumption of appliances while also giving advice on how to reduce consumption. Other handy features are the option to turn the heating up or down via the internet or mobile phone and a special button for switching off all appliances that don’t need to be on. In this way, the energy management system not only saves energy but also gives households extra comfort.
Earlier pilot results
The energy display has already been tested by Nuon and SenterNovem on a smaller scale among 18 households in Arnhem. The average savings were 9 per cent on electricity and 14 per cent on gas, working out at around €200 per year for an average household. The maximum savings were 34 per cent for electricity and 32 per cent for gas. The test also showed that households used appliances and heating more efficiently, for instance by turning them off or lower more often. In addition, old energy-guzzling appliances were replaced with new more energy-efficient appliances.
If the test in Amsterdam is successful, this energy management system will eventually be made available to the general public.
The project is an initiative of Nuon, IBM and Cisco. Within this consortium Nuon develops the applications for the energy management system and IBM equips the homes with a smart energy network, making use of intelligent IT systems and well-protected web technology. Cisco is responsible for the intelligent communication hardware. Project partners in the test are the housing associations Far West and Ymere, AIM (Amsterdam Innovation Motor), Home Automation Europe, the Amsterdam ROC (Regional Training Centre), the University of Amsterdam and grid manager Liander.
The project is part of Amsterdam Smart City, a collaboration between the inhabitants of Amsterdam, businesses and governments in order to illustrate how energy can be saved, now and in the future. The project, which is co-funded by the European Fund for Regional Development, fits seamlessly with the vision of the initiators that households will increasingly embrace information technology to achieve greater energy efficiency.
Nuon is an energy company whose 6,000 employees serve around three million consumers, businesses and organisations in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. Its key commitment is to supply energy that is reliable, affordable and as clean as possible. Nuon produces and supplies gas, electricity, heat and natural cooling and helps customers to reduce their energy use. The company operates as Business Group Benelux of the Vattenfall Group.
Cisco, (NASDAQ: CSCO), is the worldwide leader in networking that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate. Information about Cisco can be found at http://www.cisco.com. For ongoing news, please go to http://newsroom.cisco.com.