EET
Figuring energy savings on an iPad

Figuring energy savings on an iPad

The PlugCalc app features fill-in fields and drop-down menus to simplify the calculation of power usage for plug loads such as office equipment. In a nutshell, it shows how much energy can be saved by turning office equipment off at night rather than letting it sit idle. According to the DoE and EIA, these loads represent a growing source of electrical consumption in commercial applications, accounting for as much as 20% of total energy use in office buildings.

PlugCalc is available either online or as an iPad app. Users can accept the default power rating published by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory built into the tool, or select their own setting. The app figures the potential energy savings of up to eight different plug loads by selecting them from a pull down menu of typical office equipment (computer monitors, computer speakers, task lighting, personal printers, personal charging devices, scanners, USB hubs). Users can also create customized device lists. Users can print their calculation out or email results directly from the Web page.

The iPad version provides the same functionality via touch pad, and users can email results to their laptop for printing.

Users of PlugCalc may be on the cutting edge in that many building energy codes are evolving toward mandatory plug load controls in the near future. For example, ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2010 will require that half of all receptacles installed in an enclosed space be on automatic controls.

The online version of PlugCalc is available here: http://www.wattstopper.com/calculators/

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