Awards & Publications

2018 Awards

Data-Driven Communications Campaign: Trim the Waste with Joules the Cow

Trim the Waste is an educational program designed to empower students and staff to participate in saving energy on campus. The program is a mix of informative content and questionnaires, culminating in participants looking for energy waste in their buildings. In 11 months, the program has engaged over 260 participants, with roughly 40% identifying energy waste. Analysts in the Energy Conservation Office use the results to gauge increased knowledge of energy conservation and to inform future energy-saving projects.

 

Energy Efficiency at the Campus Level:  Small Workspace Air & Remote Monitoring (SWARM)

In the SWARM project, UC Davis deployed simple and flexible internet-connected thermostats and electricity meters to small buildings. The new networks united the small buildings into a centralized system for HVAC scheduling, energy monitoring, and remote troubleshooting. In addition to being scalable in breadth, HVAC control and energy monitoring are the infrastructure backbones that allow for other innovative projects. For example, in the first few months after coming online at UC Davis, another energy group leveraged the small building scheduling to test thermal leakage from outside the building. A third group started an HVAC and lighting integration project that would not have otherwise been possible.

 

2017 Awards

Smart Energy Analytics Campaign: Recognition for Innovation in the use of Energy Management Information Systems

University of California, Davis, received national recognition from the U.S. Department of Energy, acknowledging their innovative work to save energy through the use of EMIS. UC Davis developed two user-friendly energy information system dashboards to raise awareness and collect occupant feedback across their campus.
 

Honorable Mention: UC Davis, A Homegrown App for Crowdsourcing Energy & Comfort Data Across Campus

This project was recognized for its innovative approach to tackling energy waste and thermal comfort across a campus of over one thousand buildings. By crowdsourcing perceived room comfort using a simple phone app (TherMOOstat), facilities staff were better able to determine the efficiency of heating and ventilation services across campus and pinpoint potential opportunities for savings and improvement. The phone app has received 15,000 user responses since its launch in 2014 and provided staff with a valuable tool by which to respond to student comfort needs and better educate the campus on how buildings operate.

 

Publications

Occupant thermal feedback for improved efficiency in university buildings

This paper describes the campus-wide deployment of TherMOOstat, a software tool that solicits thermal feedback from students, and analyzes its impact on energy use and energy management procedure. Thermal feedback can be submitted at any time from any building on central campus. Over 10,000 feedback submissions were received across one year, transforming occupants into meaningful sensors. The research team explored manual and automatic methods to link occupant thermal feedback to the energy management system, resulting in improved efficiency and comfort. 

 

TherMOOstat: Occupant Feedback to Improve Comfort and Efficiency on a University Campus

The present research begins to address these gaps in the context of an 18-month, campus-wide deployment of TherMOOstat, a participatory thermal sensing app and HVAC management system at the University of California, Davis.

 

The Iterative Design of a University Energy Dashboard

We have developed the Campus Energy Education Dashboard (CEED), a map-based dashboard that shows energy data for buildings on a large university campus. Analytic features, including energy use intensity metrics, real-time demand data, and historical data are available for our engineer and data analyst stakeholders. For students and staff, we focus on engagement features, such as providing context for the data, prioritizing aesthetics, and layering information in successive levels of detail. CEED enables Facilities Management to improve energy efficiency and empowers building occupants with knowledge of and input into campus energy operations.

 

Upscaling participatory thermal sensing: Lessons from an interdisciplinary case study at the University of California for improving campus efficiency and comfort

This paper describes lessons learned from a campus-wide manual closed-loop PTS program at University of California, Davis, after 23 months of implementation. We discuss the program in terms of three main goals: inspiring occupant participation, interpreting the data, and improving comfort and energy efficiency. Each goal requires a different set of skills and resources, which has resulted in an inter-sector and interdisciplinary project team comprised of facilities management staff and behavioral science and engineering researchers.