Energy optimization is all about efficient and optimal use of all the resources available. The complexities of usage pattern make such optimizations difficult to do manually. Technology comes in handy here to do such optimizations without taking away the conveniences and as technology matures, more such optimizations will be made viable thereby making our builidings not only greener and livable but also go with this 2018 World Architecture Day’s theme ‘Architecture… for a better world’, says Ar. Tejas Shah,
A lot has been talked about energy optimization in commercial buildings, and hence this article will focus on the remaining two sectors – Real estate: Residential and Hospitality. Organizations like IGBC have very detailed code and rating criteria for energy conservation in buildings. Solving energy efficiency issues of buildings is multi-disciplinary task, which ranges from choice of materials, design of buildings, kind of appliances used and more. However, the scope of this article is application of technology to efficiently manage energy consumption in both residential and hospitality sectors:
It is very important to understand the source of energy consumption in a building. There are 2 types of energy consumption: Active energy consumption and Passive energy consumption. The former is the energy consumed when certain device is active to perform certain tasks – ie” lights, geysors, appliances, and more. The latter is when devices are in stand-by mode, doing nothing but waiting to be activated. It has become a habit to leave most of the devices like television, air-conditioners, computers, and etc in stand-by mode so that they can be used instantly. The problem is ‘stand-by’ mode is not same as being off. In stand-by mode, all the devices still keep consuming energy and this is aggravated by the fact that such energy drain, even though small, in due course add up to a significant amount. Studies have shown that this kind of energy consumption can add upto 30 per cent of energy bills and very few people realise the implication of this.
So, basically the process of minimizing energy consumption in a building entails minimizing the active and passive energy consumption in a building. However, due to complex nature of usage of all these devices, and the way they impact the convenience, lifestyle and productivity of people using them, such optimization are easier said than done. One cannot say that use less light, less computers, or do not use remote to switch off things as they take away certain conveniences than to reduced energy bills. Hence, at the core of it, the technologies involved in optimizing energy have to do such optimizations without taking away those conveniences.
Let’s all together pledge this World Architecture Day, 2018 to contribute our part in minimising energy consumption and make our buildings green and our planet, a better place to live.