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Posts tagged ‘Energy Efficiency’

Evaluating Supermarket Energy Management Strategies

JamesJackson_Blog_Image James Jackson | Business Development Manager
Emerson Commercial & Residential Solutions

I recently authored an article for Facility Executive that discussed how energy management systems (EMS) are helping to reshape how the food retail industry approaches energy efficiency and demand planning. Read the full article here.

Evaluating Supermarket Energy Management Strategies

Corporations and consumers alike are always looking for ways to reduce energy costs. Nowhere is this more applicable than in supermarkets, where chains have many energy optimization opportunities among refrigeration, HVAC and lighting systems. The average 50,000 square foot store incurs $200,000 in annual energy costs, resulting in 1,900 tons of CO2 emissions (the equivalent of 360 vehicles) in one year. Of these costs, refrigeration and lighting account for more than 50 percent of total energy usage.

As the energy and utilities sectors continue to evolve, traditional approaches to energy management and demand response must also adapt to the changing landscape. Fortunately, with advances in EMS and controls technologies, food retailers can apply automation to achieve energy best practices. These tools not only provide full building ecosystem optimization but also help operators capitalize on the potential for energy savings via utility energy incentives and available demand management opportunities.

Consumption and Demand — The Difference

Understanding the difference between consumption and demand is essential for energy management planning. Consumption is measured in kilowatt hours (kWh) and refers to the amount of energy used during a billing period. Demand represents the instantaneous energy load that a commercial customer (or building) places on the grid. Utility providers use this for base infrastructure planning and to determine total load requirements of the electrical system. When demand increases, providers must draw from additional — and often more expensive — resources like coal and other fossil fuels.

Utilities measure demand in kilowatts (kW) based upon the actual power a consumer draws. Because demand costs can be potentially higher than consumption — with charges ranging from a few to several dollars per kW — demand can account for a significant portion of a monthly bill.

Evolving Demand Response

Due to the rise of renewable generation, utility providers across the country are rethinking how to develop and deploy demand response programs. Researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) in California conducted a study that evaluated the state’s energy dynamics. The study showed that California is benefiting from an increase in solar power and the continued shift of demand from midday to evening hours. The addition of smart thermostats and controls in commercial and residential sectors is also helping the state optimize energy consumption.

The LBNL study findings are helping researchers understand the amount of flexible customer load available and evaluate different methods for getting customers to change energy consumption habits, such as time of use, peak pricing programs, and day- and hour-ahead energy market plans.

The opportunity to shift demand is seen as the greatest contributor to future grid flexibility — and potentially one of the biggest opportunities for energy savings.

Energy Management Solutions

Today, advances in EMS software and controls platforms are helping operators connect with utilities and automate their energy management programs. Among other emerging strategies used by supermarket operators are self-generation via thermal and battery storage and grid-interactive buildings.

Self-generation via Thermal and Battery Storage

Most utility providers encourage consumers to implement proven thermal and battery storage options to help shift demand from peak to off-peak hours. The concept of self-generation is simple: thermal (ice) creation and battery charging take place during off-peak hours to store energy that can be used during peak hours to help utilities offset demand.

Grid-interactive Buildings

As IoT-enabled EMS and smart devices provide unprecedented connectivity between consumers and utility companies, opportunities for greater cooperation and energy optimization are also on the rise. At the Department of Energy (DOE), the Building Technology Office (BTO) is conducting research through its Grid-interactive Efficient Building (GEB) initiative. One of their primary goals is to enable buildings to become more responsive to the electric grid conditions.

These and other tools can help facilities improve energy efficiency and achieve operational success in a quickly evolving energy market. At Emerson, we’re helping to simplify energy management challenges with smart EMS software and proven controls platforms designed to help supermarket and restaurant operators connect with utilities and automate energy-saving best practices.

Multiplex Refrigeration Systems Can Help Meet Energy Regulations

MultiPlex_Diagram_HiRes

In the past, multiplex systems have struggled to gain momentum in the refrigeration industry, due to their higher initial cost. But with the Department of Energy tightening their regulations on minimum efficiency levels and concerns over refrigerant leakages increasing, the business case for these systems is quickly turning.

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MAKING SENSE of the Technology Used to Meet Future DOE Energy Regulations

MakingSense031715

Whether you’re an OEM, wholesaler, contractor, design consultant or end user, you’ve probably become increasingly aware of the of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) new minimum energy efficiency regulations in the commercial refrigeration industry. Although the effective dates for the DOE’s rulings are not until 2017 and 2018, many OEMs have proactively been preparing to improve the efficiency of their refrigeration equipment.

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Agenda for Next E360 Forum Is Finalized

E360 Forum - Anaheim

Fresh off the heels of the success of our first E360 Forum, we’re excited to announce that our next one will be held on February 18 at the Embassy Suites Anaheim — South in Anaheim, California. The free daylong event will take place one day prior to the North American Association of Food Equipment Manufacturers (NAFEM) show starting on February 19, and will give many NAFEM attendees an opportunity to contribute to these important E360 conversations.

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Five Things Your Boss Wants You to Know About Commercial Air Conditioning Regulations

Did you know 20-40 percent of current 6-60 ton commercial package and split systems don’t meet new 2016 efficiency minimums? Your boss may not be aware of the changes coming, but it’s a fair guess that he or she expects their team of HVAC professionals to be current on upcoming industry changes.

Photo: (L to R) Bart Powelson and Karl Zellmer of Emerson, Richard Lord of UTC, Cindy Sparrow of Lennox, Frank Vadino of Cold Technology.

Photo: (L to R) Bart Powelson and Karl Zellmer of Emerson, Richard Lord of UTC, Cindy Sparrow of Lennox, Frank Vadino of Cold Technology.

At our Technology in Action Conference last month, we brought together industry leaders to talk about the effect of new air conditioning efficiency standards on contractors, manufacturers and our customers.

During the course of our lively discussion, five key points emerged:

  1. To understand new efficiency regulations on commercial air conditioning systems, you need to know how they are being measured. The ASHRAE 90.1-2013 standards include a 13-15 percent increase in Integrated Energy Efficiency Ratio (IEER) for air cooled package/split systems. IEER is a measure of part load efficiency using a weighted average of efficiencies at various system capacities and conditions.Rather than looking at EER, which had been the industry standard for decades, the regulations, which are expected to go into effect in 2016 are focusing on performance across a range of conditions, since typical systems spend most of their time running at 50-70 percent load capacity.
  2. The emphasis on part-load efficiency has a great side effect: improved comfort. When it comes to evaluating the performance of an HVAC system, regulatory agencies are focused on energy use, bosses usually care about costs, but let’s not forget that visitors to your store or building care mostly about comfort. Fortunately, the new efficiency standards can serve all three needs. A minimum standard measurement that more accurately reflects how systems run leads to more efficient equipment that will both save on energy use and cost, but also include capacity modulation that can lower humidity and maintain more consistent temperatures.
  3. Manufacturers and OEMs have your back and are developing the technology to support the new efficiency minimum standards. While you (and your boss) may be just now coming up to speed on the standards for 2016, many OEMs and manufacturers have been preparing for the new standards for years. Introducing capacity modulation with tandems and variable speed compressors will be the trend to improve part-load performance.
  4. Don’t forget to review rebates and voluntary standards. Voluntary standards like Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE) and the U.S. Green Building Council are pushing the upper end of the spectrum, creating guides and benchmarks beyond minimum standards.Be sure to impress the boss with your knowledge of energy rebates available on a national and state-by-state basis by visiting the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.
  5.  Training is key. Staying current on the latest developments in technology will be key to helping ensure equipment is running efficiently. Connect with OEMs and manufacturers for training on the equipment your team will be servicing and installing.

Bart Powelson
Director of Commercial Marketing, Air Conditioning Business
Emerson Climate Technologies

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