On the Road with Bert: NAESCO Conference & Vendor Showcase – Booth #31

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Bert will be in La Jolla at the NAESCO Annual Conference & Vendor Showcase November 13-15th. We look forward to meeting you in Booth #31.  

Bert’s patented wireless solutions use the existing network to manage devices and collect building data from over 40,000 miscellaneous electric loads in 800+ buildings.  ESCOs rely on Bert’s to deliver verifiable energy savings and improved building efficiency. Loads can be integrated into the existing BACnet/IP-based building automation system for centralized control and administration.

Conference Description

NAESCO’s 36th annual meeting and show will highlight the opportunity for energy infrastructure and upgrading the nation’s building stock. The Renovate, Retrofit, Reduce (“R3”) Conference will explore the latest innovations in the energy efficiency market in the built space, as well as market trends on developing microgrids, venture capital for energy project finance, innovative energy supply partnerships, and U.S. cities leadership on sustainability. This conference will educate attendees on current market trends, project examples, and practices used by the U.S. energy services industry.

Website

https://www.r3conference.com/

Date

November 13 – November 15, 2019

Venue

Hilton La Jolla Torrey Pines
La Jolla, California

Bert Delivers – Implementing Plug Load

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Implementing plug load control works best with an experienced partner.  Even though plug load energy savings is considered low hanging fruit, it represents a small piece of many performance contracts.  Therefore, ESCOs must be confident about their partners’ ability to quickly and efficiently deliver maximum energy savings before adding plug load control to a project.

At Bert, we know what we’re doing.  We created a structured installation process, designed for performance contracts, that has been refined after installing 40,000 Berts in 1,000 buildings.  We complete most projects within 6 – 8 weeks, keeping partners and users updated every step along the way.  This post highlights our approach to implementing plug load control.

Turnkey Plug Load Implementations Ensure Success

It’s a fact. ESCOs don’t have the time or energy to manage plug load projects.  Instead they rely on partners with the resources and expertise to manage the entire implementation for them.  ESCOs require turnkey solutions from vendors with the capability to handle everything, including audits, installations and integration services.

At Bert, we see ourselves as more than just a technology company.  We take complete responsibility for the entire project, from preliminary savings through measurement and verification.  In some projects, Bert performs the IGA audit and the hardware installation.  Other times, we train and manage partners selected by the ESCO.  Either way, we do not turn the system over until every Bert is named, grouped and scheduled and the post-installation savings report is created.

Details Matter When Implementing Plug Load

Projects require attention to details. Besides documenting the location and type of each load, it’s also necessary to identify locations that lack Wi-Fi coverage or have other issues preventing the installation of plug load control hardware.  Ideally, this data is shared with partners and end users throughout the project.  For instance, installers need the audit data before going on-site so they know where to go.  Performance contractors and end users want “as-built” documents reflecting up-to-the minute progress.

Cloud-based tools make it possible to keep track of the specifics.  In addition, information such as photos of hardwired inline devices can be shared real-time. Bert’s set of robust iOS and Android audit and installation tools facilitates data sharing. Besides providing instant access to the data, the technology allows Bert  to remotely monitor audits and installations, providing immediate assistance.

Provide easy-to-understand energy savings estimates

Everyone agrees the goal is delivering actual energy savings that are equal to the IGA savings estimate.  In a perfect world, IGA estimates would be identical to the post-installation savings reports. In reality, most projects have minor equipment changes.  Therefore, ESCOs and user must be able to easily compare the IGA and the final “as-built”.

Bert makes it easy by presenting all savings data in the same format.  Whether it’s a Preliminary Savings estimate, an IGA estimate, or a post-installation M&V report, the data looks the same.

To ensure the actual savings are equal to our IGA estimate, we deliberately generate conservative IGA estimates and continue to identify additional energy savings opportunities throughout the life of the project. We are proud of our ability to consistently achieve actual energy savings that exceeds our IGA estimate in many projects.

Decide upfront if projects warrant an IGA

It’s true that implementing plug load control improves most project economics, but not all projects make sense – particularly in locations with extremely low kWh rates or in buildings where devices need to be on all day, every day.  ESCOs often prefer to do an upfront analysis before deciding whether or not to proceed with an IGA.

Bert’s Preliminary Savings Sheet provides ESCOs with an educated guess about potential energy savings without going on-site. We enter the building types, building sizes and building kWh rates into a proprietary modelling tool that calculates the expected number and types of plug and inline devices by building.  Based on the occupancy hours for each building, the tool estimates energy savings using standby load data from similar devices in previous Bert projects.

Assuming the numbers make sense and the project moves forward, Bert follows up with an on-site IGA.  Estimated counts are replaced with actual counts and savings are recalculated.

If you want additional information about implementing plug load control, please feel free to reference our FAQ guide or reach out to a Bert representative.

 

Visit us at NAESCO’s 35th Annual Conference & Vendor Showcase

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We’re looking forward to our 5th straight NAESCO conference. Meet Bert CEO, Scott Yetter and Southern Area Business Development Manager, Kirk Rodgers in Orlando and learn why leading ESCOs included Bert’s industry-leading solutions in over 80 performance contracts.

Hint: It might be our rapid payback, quick deployment and proven implementation methodology.

Bert’s patented wireless solutions use the existing network to manage devices and collect building data from miscellaneous electric loads to deliver verifiable energy savings and improved building efficiency. In addition, Bert integrates these loads into BACnet/IP-based building automation systems for centralized control and administration.

Stop by to see us at Booth # 111!

NAESCO 35th Annual Conference

Conference Description

Targeted to the ESCO market, NAESCO’s premiere conference and vendor showcase focuses on key policy and business issues affecting the energy service industry. The program includes a mix of content, exhibit time and networking covering the latest innovations, technologies and services in the energy efficiency industry.

Website

http://www.naesco.org/conference-2018

Date

October 31 – November 2, 2018

Venue

Omni Orlando Resort at ChampionsGate
ChampionsGate, Florida 33896

See Bert at the 7th Annual ESC Market Transformation Conference

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We’re heading to Atlanta for the 2018 Energy Services Coalition Conference on October 4th and 5th.

Please visit us at the exhibit expo to learns why Bert’s industry-leading hardware, software and integration solutions for plug and hardwired loads improves performance contract economics. By controlling “everything else” in the building, Bert delivers big energy savings.

We hope to see you in Atlanta!

Conference Description

The 1 ½ day conference offers a broad range of topics for those involved in the guaranteed energy savings performance contracting (GESPC) community, including those managing, developing, implementing or marketing GESPC programs, products or services.

Website

Find more information or register your spot here:

http://conference2018.energyservicescoalition.org/

Date

October 4 – 5, 2018

Venue

Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center
Atlanta, GA 30308

Can I Calculate Plug Load Savings Without an IGA?

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 Yes, it’s possible to calculate potential plug load energy savings without performing an investment grade audit. Most energy managers do not have the tools or enough information to confidently estimate potential plug load savings for their buildings.  This post will explore different methods to calculate potential savings without performing an investment grade audit.

These estimates will be less accurate than an IGA savings estimate, but they are often sufficient to determine whether it makes sense to proceed with a detailed audit. 

Calculate Estimated Plug Load Savings using Rule of Thumb

When specifics about the number and types of loads are unknown, the following rule of thumb can be used to gauge potential energy savings: 

The yearly cost to power an uncontrolled kW load is roughly $1,000. Powering the load off nights and weekends saves nearly $700 each year since commercial buildings are only occupied about 30 percent of the time.

Here’s the math:

Annual Cost Uncontrolled kW MEL at $.11 kWh
Devices are on all day, every day

8,760 hours on x $.11 kWh rate = $ 963.60

Annual Savings Controlled kW MEL at $.11 kWh
Devices turned on weekdays, turned off nights and weekends

6,132 hours off x $.11 kWh rate = $ 674.52

Use Automated Plug Load Energy Savings Calculator

A more accurate and detailed plug load energy savings estimate can be created with an automated savings calculator like Bert’s Preliminary Savings Sheet (PSS). The PSS estimates the number of common plug loads for each building based on the type of building and its size.  It also includes potential kWh and dollar savings for the project by device type and building.  

Bert uses exclusive data about the number of devices per square foot and average hourly standby loads from earlier projects to estimate savings. The following data is needed for Bert’s model: building types, square footages and kWh rates.  

Contact Bert for a Preliminary Savings estimate.

Audit Buildings For Most Accurate Plug Load Energy Savings Calculations

A detailed physical inventory is the most accurate way to estimate savings. Without this level of detail, it is simply not possible to accurately calculate plug load energy savings.

Record the location, quantity and device type of all plug loads electronically. This makes the savings estimate more accurate.  In addition, ESCOs, installation partners, and the end user can all easily access the data. At the same time, determine the standby load for each device type. Run the IGA saving model using actual audit counts and standby loads.

Compare Measured Overnight Load to Savings Estimate to Verify Energy Savings

Once control and measurement devices, such as the Bert Smart Plug and Inline Series, are installed the savings model should be run again using the ‘as-built” quantities and measured standby loads. Compare KWh and dollar savings to the earlier savings estimates.

Calculate the Reduction in Baseline Load Percentage

Finally, compare the proportion of the Overnight Load to the Baseline Load to calculate the energy savings as a percentage of the total Baseline Load. In most projects, Overnight Load represents somewhere between 30% and 50% of the Baseline Load.

 

 

This percentage varies greatly between projects, depending on occupancy hours, kinds of devices controlled and the daytime energy usage patterns. In buildings with heavy daytime device usage, the daytime load represents a larger proportion of the overall load, so reduction in baseline load will be closer to 30%. In buildings where devices are used less frequently during the week, the daytime and overnight loads will be closer in size.  In these cases, baseline load reduction could be close to 50 percent.

As you look at the percentage, keep in mind that the percentage reduction is not directly related to the project’s kWh or dollar savings.  A lower percentage does not mean that a project is saving less money or fewer kilowatt hours than a project with a higher percentage. It just means that, on a relative basis, the projects with the smaller  reduction percentage has larger daytime loads. 

Breakdown of the Baseline Load

Baseline Load: kWh recorded during baseline data collection
Includes all devices and circuits that will be controlled. Devices operate without schedules, collecting hourly measurement data. Baseline Load is split into two categories for savings calculations: Daytime Load and Overnight Load.

Daytime Load: kWh while the building is occupied
This load varies from week-to-week and can differ from the load recorded during baseline data collection. Devices are scheduled on. 

Building operators seeking detailed information about daytime device usage should use an administrative dashboard like Bert Analysis to analyze and compare daytime energy usage.

Overnight Load: kWh while the building is empty
Also called Standby Load. This load is eliminated once devices are scheduled. Total kWh savings and dollars are equal to the size of this load.