Posts tagged ‘Building efficiency’

Coordinator Update: M&E

by Vi Nguyen, Coordinator
The Coalition was founded with the mission to highlight Best Practices from and for university student groups around the world. As a result, our efforts with Monitoring and Evaluations (M&E) have started! We released our first two annual surveys to try and tease out these Best Practices. One is focused on the Coalition and the teams’ experiences with being a part of a Global Coalition. The data attained and analyzed from this survey will be used to improve the Coalition for the next year as we expand.

The other survey is stylized specifically for each team, asking them about their deliverables, their results, and trying to figure out what would have made the projects more successful–whether it was more team members, more administrative support from the university, or more funding!

The teams are currently filling out the surveys and we will be releasing that sometimes early in 2011! Be on the look out!

December 2, 2010 at 8:35 pm Leave a comment

Project Updates 2: Solar Panel Developments

from Bilkent University | Ankara, Turkey

by Chee Yong Tan

In our last update, we told you that to examine the effectiveness of using solar panels at Bilkent University campus, we constructed a solar panel demonstrator. However, the first place which we constructed the panel was not convenient for data storage, because there was not any place for the computers and other equipments. In order to collect and store the data gotten from the solar power demonstrator, some place which could be appropriate for data transfer to computers should be chosen. Therefore, the construction of the solar panel demonstrator was revised according to solve this issue. It was decided that constructing the solar panel near the EE (Electronics Engineering) Building. The cables were connected between the solar panel demonstrator to the multimeter at the laboratory. The window of the building was used for passing the cables into the laboratory.

Figure-1: The Installation of the Solar Panel near the EE building

Then the cables from the solar power demonstrator were connected to the multimeter UT60E. This multimeter has a property which can transfer the data from the multimeter to the computer. After we learned that this multimeter has such a property, we revised our components and changed our multimeter and started to use UT60E. In brief, the place of the construction was revised and the components which provide data transfer was revised.

Before the storage mechanism worked properly, each day we went to laboratory and took the voltage and current data of the solar panel demonstrator.

After that, we developed the data storage procedure. The data is started to stored with the help of the multimeter UT60E. We are using two UT60E, one is for the voltage storage, the other is for the current storage.

In order to record data on computer, we connected multimeter UT60E to computer through RS232, and make adjustments of port according to UT60E datasheet. Interface saves data in an excel format as an excel file. These files have the voltage and current data for every 1 hour. Putting all data for each hour in this report can be a little confusing. Therefore, we think that making graphs for the data at 12 pm and 3 pm is much clear.

In brief, we worked on our solar panel demonstrator up to this point. We changed the place of the solar panel because we needed storing the data gotten from the solar panel demonstrator to computers. We use the multimeters UT60E, which has the property that can transfer the data from the multimeter to the computer. By this way, we have the storage of voltage and current values for each hour.

July 8, 2010 at 1:32 am 1 comment

Project Updates 2: Stickers & Presentations

from Hokkaido University | Sappora, Japan

by Edgard Alves Bontempo e Silva

Our project is also moving slower than planned but we are advancing nonetheless. We have had a fruitful meeting with the head of the Sustainability Office of Hokkaido University and we are officially combining our efforts and will be making use of their structure to implement our projects. If anyone is interested in checking all the great stuff that they do, please follow this link: http://www.sustain.hokudai.ac.jp/

They have, for example, made this incredible “Energy Use Sticker” (picture below) that we will use on our Energy Saving Competition:

The "Hokudai" written on the right-top of the sticker is the abbreviation of "Hokkaido Daigaku" - Hokkaido University in Japanese.

The black stripe is thermo-sensitive and those marks, red at 20 degrees and blue at 28 degrees, show the ideal spots for balance between comfort and energy usage on winter and summer respectively. In this picture taken on winter for example, the lightly-lit yellow spot at 22 degrees shows that the temperature is a little above the necessary (20ºC) and suggests that we should turn the heater down a bit. As you can see, the sticker also shows the basic tips for saving energy that we all know but seldom follow. Very simple and inexpensive way to give a heads-up to all on campus. This sticker is on the wall of my own lab and similar stickers are being place all over the campus, right beside the air-conditioning and light switches. No need to say that we will be advertising it widely during our project!
Soon we should have some kind of website running and linked to the one I mentioned above. Using that and the mail network on campus we are planning on asking students suggestions and project ideas to save energy and for sustainable campus development in general. We have also started recruiting new members to help on the projects and carry on with the work.
To finish, I will like to show 2 pictures taken during the preparations of the Sapporo International Night (event I mentioned on our last update)

Pictures by Hyunjun Seo (team member) and Katsutoshi Yoshida.

It was a great opportunity for us to spread the word to other universities and to the general public about our project! Good luck to all!

May 5, 2010 at 10:08 pm Leave a comment

Project Updates: Sappora Int’l Night

from Hokkaido University | Sappora, Japan

by Edgard Alves Bontempo e Silva

Last month we joined the 32nd Sapporo International Night, an event aiming to engage Japanese and foreigners living in Japan in discussions over important issues for society. This year their theme was “The Earth’s Environment” and five of us presented a series of speeches addressing possible consequences of global climate change, reporting the disappointing results of COP15, the objective and results of our meeting at Copenhagen University, what do we plan to do this year at Hokkaido University, and how that relates to the city and society. It was a great PR opportunity for us and it is helping to gather support inside and outside of the university to implement our proposals.

We also started a series of meetings with various university officials to explain our ideas and how do we plan to put them to practice during this year. While the “Warm Biz” proposal has received positive feedback, we are still striving to fine-tune our Energy Savings Competition so that it does not disrupt the normal activities of the university staff and students. Fortunately all the energy consumption data was already made available to us and it seems to be in accordance to our expectations and adequate to be used on the competition.

April 19, 2010 at 9:51 pm Leave a comment

Project Updates: Angstrom

from Uppsala University | Uppsala, Sweden

by Herman Knutsson

Uppsala University, or Ångström Energy Quest, is currently moving along multiple paths. All of them with the goal to reduce energy waste in, for starters, the Ångström laboratory building.

If everything goes according to plans we are on the verge of dragging an electrician to the depths of Ångström laboratory. There we will perform momentary measurements as well as mounting a temporary measuring device aimed at selected parts of the building. This has been the objective all along but a meeting today with the energy strategist at the company who owns the building, Akademiska Hus, has taken us much further towards realizing it. The environment coordinator at Uppsala University is also highly involved at this stage, being our main contact with the university.

Supposing these measurements lead us nowhere, we are simultaneously looking into different ways of affecting the attitude of the buildings residents, students and professionals.  Main goal at the moment in this branch is finding a way to display the current use of electricity to the students. Having that solved we see several ways of inspiring them to reduce the waste.

Our timeline has been slightly thrown due to the meetings with Akademiska Hus being postponed.

The group is still very excited about the project and we are taking it on with energy. 😉

April 14, 2010 at 9:44 pm Leave a comment

Project Updates: Yale’s Progress

from Yale University | Connecticut, USA

by Matt Ramlow

Yale has completed the first phase of its dual project with MIT by compiling a list of 88 different environmental initiatives throughout the different departments at Yale. We then began to sort the projects into our major 3 sub-categories; built environment, behavioral, and communications projects. Yale has also drafted a preliminary survey to interview each of the projects and gather information regarding the development, funding, work hours, participation, goals, transparency, savings/reductions, and level of success of each project. Our next step is to continue to collaborate with MIT to create a final draft of the survey that can be administered across both campuses. We hope to have this completed in early April so we can conduct our interviews before the end of the spring semester (mid May) and start to gather the data from the different projects.

To view the Project Database and Preliminary Survey Questions, click on the following link.

April 2, 2010 at 9:36 pm 1 comment

Project Highlights: Green Residence Competition

from University of British Columbia | British Columbia, Canada

The team will work with students, staff, faculty members and the UBC Sustainability Office to design and implement a resource consumption competition in UBC’s junior residences. They will be launching this competition in the fall semester of 2010.

The competition will be piloted in Totem Park Residence for first year students. The project will draw on the readings of energy and resource monitoring devices to create a friendly competition that will ideally be delivered every year in Totem and hopefully expand to other residences as well.

The purpose of the competition is to:

  • Reduce consumption of campus resources (water, electricity and steam)
  • Engage students in sustainability learning and practice and
  • Measure the impact of real time monitoring and the use of promotions and incentives to reduce the consumption of resources.

On university campuses, the vast majority of energy consumption takes place within buildings. The environmental and financial consequences of this consumption are considerable. For example, in 2009 UBC consumed over 3.8 million cubic meters of water, 330 million kg of steam, 150,000 gigajoules of direct natural gas and 185 million kWh of electricity, at a cost of approximately $24 million per year.

With approximately 8,000 students living in residence on UBC campus, a substantial percentage of total campus resource use takes place within dormitories. In residential settings, it has been demonstrated that 50% of energy use depends on lifestyle choices, while the balance depends on physical characteristics of buildings and building equipment. Students living in dormitories have a high degree of lifestyle control over electricity and water use. Personal choices, such as how long they shower and whether they leave lights, stereos and computers on have the potential to reduce energy and water consumption. Residence halls are therefore an obvious target for conservation measures.

The measurable goals of this project includes measuring the competition impact, which will be measured in terms of consumption reduction, cost savings, and impact of real-time monitoring and incentives on behavior. During the project design phase, they will be working with student, staff and faculty stakeholders to design the competition and develop our indicators of project success.

April 2, 2010 at 9:08 am Leave a comment

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