The topics of "energy monitoring" and "demand response" are actually old ideas, but the discussion is being "reborn" in our current energy codes and attitudes towards green energy. More, now than ever, everyone is caring about the amount of energy used at their homes, businesses, or even in government agencies.
The wide spread use of LED based lighting sources is GREATLY reducing the amount of energy that is being consumed by these different organizations. However, it does not tell those same organizations how much energy they are actually consuming. Instead, they have to manually calculate the amount of energy consumption. Wouldn't it be nice to have an electronic system that would tell you how much energy you are consuming so you could adjust accordingly?
If your answer is YES, then you want Energy Monitoring (just a fancy way to say consumption). Energy Monitoring allows end-users to know how much energy they are consuming at any moment in time, as well as to track and graph the amount of energy that has been consumed over a period of time.
Energy Monitoring can be done on a very broad basis, such as an electric meter that tracks the amount of overall energy that an organization uses at a facility. In addition, it is possible to monitor the amount of energy on a per light fixture basis. Finally, it is even possible to monitor the amount of energy on a load circuit basis. These distinctly different energy monitoring options provide different amounts of useful data - but also cost different amounts to implement into your organization.
Our company, Knight Sound & Lighting Inc., can provide metering options (broad), load circuit monitoring (relays and/or dimmers), and/or individual light fixture monitoring. All of this is possible through different products offered by a wide array of manufacturers that we currently work with in the field on a daily basis. Just contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 866-457-5937 for additional information about Energy Monitoring. This can be added to your system at any time.
So, what is "Demand Response"? Demand Response is a continuation of Energy Monitoring. When you use a large amount of energy (think large house, business, or government building) you are charged for your energy consumption based upon your "Peak Demand," (typically during the summer when you are using air-conditioners and a lot of energy). This means that you can be charged at a higher rate, year round, just because you had a Peak Demand that occurred on one (1) day of the year.
So, again, you ask what is "Demand Response"? Demand Response is when a lighting control system uses the Energy Monitoring feature to determine when your organization is approaching a Peak Demand Event and will automatically start shutting off non-essential lights, compressors, air conditioners, coolers, and any other high consumer of electrical energy. This Demand Response can take out a few items to an entire building and is typically done in phases.
This is absolutely crucial to save anywhere from thousands to millions of dollars in electrical cost to an organization. This can make a very BIG difference to the budgets of many organizations.
This means that Energy Monitoring and Demand Response go hand in hand to help monitor and then reduce the amount of energy that is being consumed by an organization.
All of these features are possible with a variety of different manufacturers that we (Knight Sound & Lighting Inc) work with on a daily basis. As you consider ways to become "green" don't underestimate the savings generated by monitoring and responding to your lighting control system (relay, dimmers, and electronics).
Please contact us with any questions, comments, and/or ideas that you would like to discuss with your organization. We are here to help.