Load Shedding is Vital to Reduce Demand Peaks by Utilities

Many companies are noticing that demand costs are rising due to utilities having to pay higher distribution charges by the electricity suppliers. Many companies are doing  load shedding to reduce demand usage by installing demand controllers by EG Energy Controls. These demand controllers will do load shedding when it notices that a demand peak is coming. These smart systems will interface with the utilities meter and will turn on/off non-essential loads during that period. For example, it may stagger air conditioners, heaters and machines during the peak demand periods. This usually occurs in hot summer days and cold winter days. By doing load shedding even once a month, a company can save thousands of dollars.

 

Shown below is one example from Tennessee showing that the utility wants to add new demand charges to their customers. Please check with your local utility to see  if “demand charges” are being added to your future power bill so you will be prepared to install a  demand controller beforehand.

 

 

TENNESSEE

 

Changes to Tennessee Valley Authority’s rate structure that went into effect this month could translate into larger bills for Tullahoma Utilities Board.

 

The pricing changes, for now, will affect only distributors of TVA power, such as TUB and Duck River EMC, and not homeowners or businesses who ultimately use TVA-generated power.

 

However, TVA is moving in October 2012 toward a major change in pricing structure that would price electric power differently at different season of the year or times of the day.

 

By adding a demand charge or time-of-day method of pricing, power utilities in other states have encouraged consumers to limit consumption during high-demand periods and shift their energy consumption to low-demand periods, such as the middle of the night.

 

Brian Skelton, TUB general manager, said Thursday that TVA is giving utilities a rate break between high electricity demand seasons and is charging higher rates during summer months when air conditioners are commonly running and in the winter months when home heating increases electricity demand.

 

Skelton said the process can encourage electricity users to conserve power.

 

 “We couldn’t afford anything like that,” he said, adding that TUB will strive to inform customers about the situation so that they can conserve in their electric usage to lower the peak demand.

 

The billing process is moving toward “time of use pricing” in October 2012 where TUB and other distributors will be installing “smart meters” that electronically send readings to the TUB office. Consumers will be charged different rates for electricity during different seasons and times of day to reflect the differing costs of generating more power, based upon overall demand.

 

Skelton said the process is geared toward encouraging consumers to change their usage habits, waiting until the lower demand time frame to do laundry or turn up their air conditioners or heating units.

 

He said TVA is trying to reduce power demand, particularly the amount of electricity used all at once, including during hot and cold periods. Switching to the demand and energy contract is one step in that direction, and changing to time-of-use rates is another, he added.

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Every good business owner or manager will always be alert for ways to save their company money.

One of the highest expenditures a company will be consistently faced with on a monthly basis is their energy bill; and with energy rates rising annually, doing energy monitoring in this area would seem to be a desirable, if unlikely goal.

However, there is a proven method of reducing energy consumption and that’s through the use of  energy management systems. These systems allow businesses to continually monitor their energy consumption and usage, identifying how that energy is used throughout their business and allowing managers to spot areas where adjustments to efficiency can be made.

Energy management systems are software based and collect data from an installation on a real-time basis, tracking usage throughout every area of a business. The software will include extraneous factors that may affect the business’ energy consumption (such as the weather, time of day or building occupancy) before analyzing the data to identify peak usage times and providing reports with a detailed breakdown of exactly how and where a company’s energy costs are being incurred. This kind of feedback is useful for identifying areas within a business which may be consuming excessive amounts of energy and costing the business money in excessive energy bills.

The data collected can then be used to create an  energy management plan which can be implemented in an effort to reduce energy consumption and overheads. Simple fixes such as switching production runs to off-peak hours or adjusting the temperature of an air-conditioning system, can quickly add-up to significant savings for a business, with some studies reportedly showing a potential saving of between 5 to 15%.

Of course, another way of greatly reducing your power bill would be to switch to a renewable energy solution, such as a parabolic dish system. These solar powered systems are the perfect answer to reducing commercial energy costs while offsetting dependency on electricity, natural gas or oil.

Parabolic dish solar concentrator systems are perfect for powering air conditioning systems (commercial units can provide as much as 13kW of solar heating per hour) and are a cheap and reliable way of producing consistent hot water for a business. And because of the ease of installation of solar concentrator systems (a single unit will usually take just two days to install) adding extra units to your facility as your business grows is simple.

Coupling the benefits of solar generated energy with the oversight and control afforded from the installation of competent energy management systems, means that business owners and managers now have an option to greatly reduce their overheads while utilizing a clean and green means of powering their business.

This is a guest post by James Peter. James is a fairly well-known about How Does Energy Monitoring Benefit companies? He (guest) blogs on energy management systems and Energy Controls

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Energy Management Systems Reduce Energy Costs for Stores

Electricity supply is fundamental in all business and production processes, such as in department stores where they are expected to maintain their lighting, cash registers and other equipment that are critical to store operation. However, in order to make sure your store is energy efficient, it is important to have an energy management system in place to monitor energy usage for equipment, sectors in the store, HVAC units, compressors etc.

Monitoring energy usage in commercial applications is a field that has arisen due to the need for industry to have a knowledge of the  machinery that is being used, and know exactly what the real power consumption is for each process and equipment. An energy management system is better than hiring energy consultants because it is a system that monitors 24/7 and does not have human error. In addition, once a consultant has finished their review of your facility, he leaves and you have a big pile of statistics and recommendations that seem overwhelming. With an energy management system, you choose the reports you want to see, what loads you want to compare, dates, locations, square footage of facility etc. You only get a report on what is critical for that day and information that is useful for the project you are undertaking.

The advantages of using a monitoring systems to control electricity consumption, is to know what equipment is consuming more energy, if any equipment is malfunctioning, as well as automatic control of HVAC, refrigeration, etc.
A technology based company called Energy Controls has years of experience implementing energy management systems in grocery stores. These systems interface with a Building Management System (CPC, Danfoss, Microthermal etc.) and monitors energy usage on up to 25 loads in a facility.

Example of loads that can be monitored in a store are:

Low Temp. Compressors
Med Temp Compressors
Main HVAC (Heating / Cooling)
Sub HVAC
Deli Department
Bakery Department
Sales Lighting
Décor Lighting
Cooler Lighting / Fans
Sales Floor Lighting
Parking Lot Lights
Main Ovens
Water Consumption
Gas/Oil Consumption


The Energy Management System fro EG Energy Controls has  the capabilities to do demand control and energy monitoring in 1 system. The Energy Surveillance System  is a web-based system capable of monitoring and providing control of up to 2,500 facilities within the corporate network.

How Does the Energy Management System Work?

The system gathers information from the transducers that can measure the energy use in all electrical loads such as: load compressors, lighting, main meter, heating load, air conditioning load etc.
Custom designed email messages can alert the Energy Manager of abnormal energy usage or a pending motor failure.
The system contacts the weather station to collect weather information such as wind speed, temperature, humidity, etc to decide what is “normal” energy usage. In compiling this data, the energy management system can predict the energy use for the next day. This ensures that the user only receives an email about the use of abnormal power.

All this makes it possible for companies small or large to obtain a large decrease in electricity consumption and maintenance costs.

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What Makes a Good Energy Management System?

As financial resources become tighter, financial decision makers are required to manage the company’s’ budget even more effectively. Now more than ever, corporations are seeing the need to optimize their facilities. Still one of the most crucial areas is that is forgotten is main and sub-load energy management & tracking.

How Does it Work?

The Energy Management system by EG Energy Controls is a powerful M&T (monitoring & targeting) web based energy management software. The web based energy management software allows remote access to the crucial data for energy savings. The system is built to monitor the main load and  up to 17 sub load metering  devices within a facility to better detect energy leaks, provide benchmark reports, bill verification, and be alerted when abnormal energy usage occurs.

What Can Be Monitored?

Not only are electrical sub-loads monitored but as well propane/natural gas, oil, and water consumption for the facility. The consumption data can be compared to the utility bill for bill verification. As well, you have better control of determining the time of day the most usage has occurred and implement equipment or procedures to reduce the usage. For industrial applications that require quality of power measurements, the ESS can easily provide information on any electrical details such as P.F, harmonics, phase – phase balancing, and more. This is an ideal add-on for large industries such as mining to process plants that need to ensure that a the quality of power is at the highest in order to prevent electrical failure and loss of profit.

Advanced Energy Monitoring

Advanced reports allows comparisons between different locations and monitored loads. This way the facility can be optimized to meet a corporate standard for facility. The reporting engine has been built to allow any type of reporting condition. You think it – ESS will crunch it. Reports can be easily exported to excel or pdf.

Graphs & Charts

Graphing capabilities provide information such as daily, monthly, yearly trends and can be easy glanced over using various line chart, bar, or pie. The ESS provides a graph overly to view different data over the same window for quick comparisons. A load profile of one store can be compared with another or benchmarking graph and report can be viewed when comparing the performance of new equipment.

Weather kWh Prediction

Weather based energy prediction has been included to accurately predict the facilities kw usage 2 hours in advance. The advantage is that you will only be alerted when energy usage is abnormal, because weather conditions will be used in the evaluation. As well, with ESS Weather you can compare a month kWh usage with another month and accurately determine the kWh usage based on humidity and temperature. No more guessing!

Notification & Alerts

The energy management software is built to provide only the information required since facility energy managers and financial officers are focused on core responsibilities. Alerts and notifications can be setup to notify if loads are not running, if a load exceeds kWh usage, if loads are running outside operating hours. Many other notification & alert conditions can be easily customized with the ESS.

Server & SQL Database

A good energy management system offers 2 options for hosting the software that analyzes the data collected. Option 1. hosted or a dedicated server installed at the head-office facility that runs the ESS web interface. The server can communicate with over 200 locations. Having a system on site ensures security for bank facilities and government institutions as well corporations. All data is stored on the dedicated server on SQL 2008 database to ensure the fastest data crunching and can be easily interfaced with SAP or other enterprise accounting management system to provide necessary data. Option 2, is to have it hosted at a server farm, this reduces the need to buy a server, but makes the data less secure.

Demand Control Add-on

A good energy management system should have the option for  demand control using the DemandMiser module. The system will automatically detect a demand peak and load shed up to 8 loads through cycle or step process, thus reducing energy costs. Custom load limits can be set for each month and will automatically adjust the load limit if more energy is needed for the building.

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What is Energy Management?

“Energy Management System” is a term that has a number of meanings, but we’re mainly concerned with the one that relates to saving energy in businesses, public-sector/government organizations, and homes:

The energy-saving meaning

When it comes to energy saving, energy management systems are used to monitor, control, and conserve energyusage in a building or organization. Typically this involves the following steps:

  1. Metering your energy consumption and collecting the data by using an energy monitoring software
  2. Finding opportunities to save energy, and estimating how much energy each opportunity could save. You would typically analyze your meter data to find and quantify routine energy waste, and you might also investigate the energy savings that you could make by replacing equipment (e.g. lighting) or by upgrading your building’s insulation.
  3. Taking action to target the opportunities to save energy (i.e. tackling the routine waste and replacing or upgrading the inefficient equipment). Typically you’d start with the best opportunities first.
  4. Tracking your progress by analyzing your meter data to see how well your energy-saving efforts have worked.

How To Choose an Energy Management System

1. Ensure the solution specifically focuses on the HVAC system.

Most energy management products on the market today are too complex to appropriately leverage or too simple to achieve the desired goal. To maximize your energy savings, minimize related costs and realize a fast payback, seek a product that specifically focuses on the HVAC system – the largest controllable source of energy drain and, thus, the quickest and easiest way to produce material savings. Additional sensors to monitor and control other sources of energy use – such as lighting, security, and office equipment – can always be integrated into today’s flexible, scalable products.

2. Seek a product that offers both on-site and remote measurement and control.

Not only should an energy management system be controllable on-site, but it also should be controllable remotely by either company personnel or even the manufacturer’s operations center professionals. By connecting to the installed system via the Internet, manufacturers offering remote capabilities, and dedicated administration thereof, can monitor a company’s real time energy consumption and ensure that temperatures do not go beyond the business’ pre-set parameters.

Such continuous monitoring also enables the immediate flagging of consumption swings and other anomalies, which can indicate larger mechanical malfunctions early on. Ultimately, remote monitoring better assures that the installed product is being used to the best of its capabilities and is facilitating the expected energy and cost savings.

3. Obtain a product with a robust yet user-friendly core feature set.

In addition to graphical viewing of real-time and historical resource consumption, today’s best-of-breed energy control products provide a robust feature set that, among other capabilities, allows users to establish thermostat heating and cooling limits and set points for different times of the day, and offer an automated “peak shaving” option designed to reduce consumption during peak demand periods.

Such advanced systems can also readily block unauthorized access and changes to the settings, and allow enabled users to view and alter the settings and presentation information via the Web, smart phones, or the on-site display.

 

4. Ensure the solution is proven with an established track record of success.

When evaluating a product, it is imperative that the manufacturer can point to a critical mass of real-world, not trial, installations in the field, and will allow you to speak with actual customers. When evaluating competing products, be sure to check references not only about the quality and user-friendliness of the product, but also the ease of installation, the hard cost savings realized (and how quickly), and the level of post-deployment support they receive from the manufacturer.

 

By using these five tips as a guideline, businesses can best assure they’ll secure a well-rounded and cost effective energy management system that will reduce their carbon footprint and energy consumption while delivering notable monetary gains.

Here the author Julia Herniak prefer the company EG Energy Controls, have installed many energy management software and energy management system for their clients and these customers have seen huge energy reductions.

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Energy Conservation for Companies

31% of all electricity in the United States is used to run commercial buildings. This rate continues to rise as companies add new office equipment. Energy use for office equipment is expected to rise by 500% in the next decade.

GOOD: Be sure to turn off lights in offices and conference rooms when they are not in use.

You might also ask your company to install automatic room lighting controls.

These devices are similar to programmable thermostats and optimize lighting use by automatically turning lights on or off depending upon occupancy or time of day.

BEST: Install a Volt Miser Lighting Controller for your HID (High Intensity Discharge) lights. These are the lights that look like a huge bulb. They are most commonly found in warehouses or in stores like Costco. Most of the time, each bulb uses 400W of energy. If you multiply that by 100 lights, you are consuming 40,000 W of energy every minute. That is huge. The Volt Miser reduces energy usage to the lamp and will drop energy usage to about 320 W. The great thing about this system is that it has 3 power reduction levels, 10%, 15% and 25%. So you can alternate based on the time of the day, the amount of traffic or the amount of natural sunlight.

These systems have been installed in hundreds of locations and have been used by grocery chains and warehouses

GOOD: Make sure that you turn of lights, make sure that thermostats are adjusted on equipment and that sensors for refrigeration are working properly.

BEST: Install an energy monitoring system by EG Energy Controls. This system can connect to 17 loads and will check energy consumption every minute and will send alerts if it notices abnormalities. The system can be accesed via website and will send emails to your blackberry with energy reports by location, store size and equipment. This system connects to the weather data to ensure that energy usage is normal based on weather conditions (humidity, hot temperatures etc.)

This system uses a PLC and high speed internet so you are sure to get your data right away. With an interactive software, you can customize reports to your needs and view multiple stores and energy usage with a click of a button. This system has been installed in many locations and can handle up to 500 locations on one server.

WASTE

Office paper is the largest percentage of a company’s garbage everyday. About 85% of office paper is currently discarded (over 7 million tons in the United States alone every year). In addition, commercial paper use increased 245% between 1960 and 1994 and continues to grow.

GOOD: Reduce.

Share electronic files, voicemail and e-mail with office mates instead of creating paper memos.

Reduce fax traffic by using computer modems instead of the office fax machine. You can save paper on one or both ends.

BETTER: Reuse

Always use the second side of paper, either by printing on both sides or using the blank side as scrap paper.

Use scrap paper to take notes instead of using notebooks, company pads, or message pads.

Use scrap paper instead of stickies.

Here the author Julia Herniak prefer the company EG Energy Controls, have installed many energy monitoring and  Lighting Controller for their clients and these customers have seen huge energy reductions.

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Load Shedding based on Programmable Logic Controller

With a Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) scheme, load shedding is initiated based on the total load versus the number of generators online and/or detection of under-frequency conditions. Each substation PLC is programmed to initiate a trip signal to the appropriate feeder breakers to shed a preset sequence of loads. This static sequence is continued until the frequency returns to a normal, stable level.

EG Energy Controls offers a load shedding system that is based on programmable logic control. These systems have been used in industrial and commercial applications for over 15 years. With the onset of the internet, these systems have been upgraded to allow users to see online their demand usage and change load shedding priority with a click of a button.

How Does It Work?

The Demand Controller can receive the kW/KVA values from 2 different kinds of inputs:

  • Pulse Input (utility meter)
  • Analog/Digital Input

Meter

Current Transducers

The system is installed in the electrical room and is connected to sheddable loads like:

  • HVAC
  • Medium Temperature Compressors
  • Low Temperature Compressors
  • Electric Heaters
  • Lighting

SAVINGS DATA THAT CAN BE ACHIEVED FROM LOAD SHEDDING

Old Demand                                               400 kW

New Demand                                             340 kW

Demand Reduction                                      60 kW

Real Demand Cost                             $10.31

Total Savings per Month                   $412.40

Yearly Savings                                   $4,948.80*

*Savings will vary depending on demand cost and demand load.

A PLC-based  load shedding scheme offers many advantages such as the use of a distributed network via the power management system, as well as an automated means of load relief. However, in such applications monitoring of the power system is limited to a portion of the network with the acquisition of scattered data. This drawback is further compounded by the implementation of pre-defined load priority tables at the PLC level that are executed sequentially to curtail blocks of load regardless of the dynamic changes in the system loading, generation, or operating configuration. The system-wide operating condition is often missing from the decision-making process resulting in insufficient or excessive load shedding. In addition, response time (time between the detection of the need for load shedding and action by the circuit breakers) during transient disturbances is often too long requiring even more load to be dropped.

 

Load shedding serves as the ultimate guard that protects the power system from a disturbance-induced collapse. Normally, this critical load preservation is done with the use of under-frequency relaying and PLC-based schemes.

Here the author Julia Herniak concludes the article that Load Shedding based on Programmable Logic Controller and  Demand Control Works, visit http://www.egenergy.com/

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