ECO-FLOORING

Many of us would know the joy of having beautiful hard wood flooring in our homes or offices and those who have not experienced that joy have yearned for it for sure. Wooden flooring just gives you the perfect feel and makes your interiors look splendid and grand.

However is it feasible to pamper ourselves with such luxuries when our resources can no more produce them? Flooring today can be made green and you could get the same feel without the guilt of exploiting the environment. Hard wood flooring and Laminate flooring are available at economical prices and give you the same feel as the actual flooring. What better way to save resources than to start at home!

Laminate flooring is highly durable, easy to install and matches up for all the short comings in real hard wood flooring. It is light weight thus can be installed easily, it is water and sunlight resistant thus lasts longer and can be used in bath rooms etc. where hard flooring is a complete no entry. Laminates for wood is also an option if your real wood flooring is getting ruined by excessive use or over exposure to natural elements. People laminate hard wood flooring to preserve it and increase its life.

Hard wood flooring can also be available in eco-friendly options. The same look and feel is created by fusing solid fibre together, this saves a lot of wood and in turn forests. The perfect thickness is created to ensure longer life and increased durability. No one could make out the difference between real wood and eco-flooring except yourself and you would be proud of its benefits.

Laminates or green hard wood floors are a permanent solution to the constant fear of damage to your flooring. They are easy to maintain and do not need much investment of time or money. These floors have been created with a lot of care and effort to provide customers with quality work within the budget. Not everyone can own real hard wood, which is why eco-flooring is a good option. It has a number of advantages as you yourself would witness over the years. Your interiors could look as splendid and last considerably longer giving you peace of mind and preserving your bank balance.

Get yourself a tough green floor and you will never regret the decision. We need to be responsible and going green is the best way to be so.

The Natural Green Store offers a variety of eco-friendly and organic products for your home or office. For more details on laminates for wood and eco flooring than please visit our website www.naturalgreenstore.com

Selecting A Commercial Interior Design Firm

Commercial interior design is a whole new world. No longer will the same old idea suffice, but you have to know whats in style right now, or you cant hope to stay with it. Like it or not, clients are analyzing everything about you, from their very first contact with someone from your office, right down to what kinds of chairs you have in your office waiting room. The only way you can be sure to deliver all of your customers best expectations is to find an interior design firm thats up on the latest trends and fashion for commercial spaces.

It helps to start by looking at some pictures to get an idea of what kind of style and interior design firm you want. Make sure that you have more than one style in mind because you may find that what you pick out at first is really not very trendy or memorable. You want to make an impression, and true experts will be able to point you in the right direction while still allowing for your taste and company style to shine through. Ultimately your new design needs to reflect your brand, your company and vision.

When you do get ready to hire an interior design firm, spend some time on the company website and look at their designs. Youll start to get an idea of whose work you like, and whose you dont. Youll also know the sign of a true expert if you can simply say one or two words that describe your company. Try showing them your company logo and let them get their inspiration from that. A companys logo says a lot about their style.

There are so many looks available these days that it helps to narrow down a specific style before you begin your search for an interior design firm. Do you want classic or contemporary? Modern or chic? Above all, the design must be functional, so make a list specifically of what you need in the space. More light? A number of separated cubicles? A front desk and chairs for the waiting room? When you are specific about what you need, it allows a good interior design firm to simply fill in the spaces and create your style.

Interior Design Ideas For The Modern Executive Office

While you are organizing an interior design for your home office or a commercial office, contemporary oriental office furniture is a possibility worth considering. Asian furniture is definitely booming in appreciation as a result of their very high quality craftsmanship and cost-effective pricing.

Home office furniture

Modern home office furniture needs to be pleasant and effective. There are exceptional modular items that make it easy for you to fit a computer desk, chairs and cabinets into your workspace. But selecting the most suitable home office furniture is not an easy task. Since productivity equates to sales and profits, the most important element to give consideration to is your productivity. The more productive you are, the more money you will be able to make. For these reasons, you want to be absolutely certain all your furniture pieces fit and you have top quality contemporary wood office furniture which encompasses a comfy chair that is ergonomically balanced. Also, lighting is another critical item to consider. If the lighting is dim, you run the risk of slowing down in a few hours which will result in poor productivity.

Commercial office furniture

Oriental contemporary furniture is also a fantastic choice when acquiring contemporary office furniture for the busy executive. Their refined designer furniture features are generally built with classic mahogany wood will greatly enhance any executive’s manner and functionality. Magnificent desks, consoles, tables and chairs will display a level of leadership to any visitor that steps into the office. Also, when considering chairs for a professional’s office, the executive chair should be a little bigger and plusher than those of the guest’s chairs. This will help the office executive command the respect that he or she has earned.

Regardless if you are considering modern home office furniture or commercial office furniture, you will want to have sufficient storage room for all of your relevant publications and gadgets. A wood bookcase is an important choice for storing your very important publications, not surprisingly, however they are also well suited for boasting treasured mementos. Having these souvenirs are beneficial for helping you to build a pleasant working surrounding. Cabinets and consoles are needed components for making it possible for you to retain your office looking nice and clear. One can use these furniture elements to save valuable legal papers out of the way of your visitors, but within simple reach from your work desk.

Whether you are designing the most ideal home office or just adding furniture to an existing commercial office, these modern Asian furniture design ideas will meet your passion to assemble a nice functioning office environment.

Cushions And Pillows More Than Just Home Furnishing Items

Home furnishing items have gone to a whole new level these days, thanks to the advent and fusion of extreme fashion which hasnt left anything untouched now, let alone home furnishing items. You will be pleased to note, and perhaps a little shocked that people now go for more fashionable things rather than looking for the comfort in the items first. But when you are going for something like cushions and pillows, you have to consider the factor of comfort. Being at comfort, is way more important than the looks, I would say. But you disagree. You wish to create a very good first impression on anyone who visits your home and so, you think I am being utterly wrong and that fashion should be given the first priority. How about we consider both? How about both Fashion and comfort? Wouldnt that be great? Yes, it would be nice. So lets see both the aspects in these items and here are my guidelines for your shopping adventure online.

1.Cushions: Cushions are a homemakers dream. The fluffy little things are as much a necessity on your bed or sofa as much you need a microwave in your kitchen. But yeah, there is lots more to it than you think; there are sofa cushion covers that can create a great impression. So yes, you should be shopping cushion accessories too. Designs of cushion covers, cushion covers India, and cushion covers online. You can buy cushion covers online, and thats the best deal you can get. One great advantage of looking for cushions and cushion covers online is that you get a lot of variety to these things.

2.Pillows: Pillows are yet another home furnishing item that make up for your home. Baby pillows, car pillows, pillows rule our world in ways we still havent noticed yet. You can buy pillows online, and you can buy pillows online because you get the very best of them when you buy pillows there.

You remember looking for something in particular once during your shopping session when you had to visit three to four stores to find the thing? And you were dead tired, and yet, you didnt find what you were looking for. Things cant go that bad when you are shopping online. You dont waste your energy doing nothing. You shop from the comfort of your home, if nothing else. You can search for a dozen eCommerce stores first and then go through their home furnishing sections. If you find the right item, you go and buy it from that website. If not, you proceed to the next web page. Second, you can pay in any method you want. The options are always open internet banking, credit/debit cards or cash on delivery. Also, the items are shipped you within a week and reach you within that time as well. If you shop in bulks and above a certain amount, you can get a discount or even free on the delivery charges as well.

Landscaping materials to use

In landscape design and architecture, hard landscaping materials refer to construction materials that a designer or architect uses to enhance the landscape design. Some examples of hard landscaping materials include stones, bricks, gravel, concrete, glass, and the like. The matching term soft landscaping materials refers to the plants.

Here are some common hard landscaping materials to get you familiar with these important elements in your landscape design:

Pavers are widely used in landscaping. There is a wide range of pavers to choose from to suit different areas in your home such as a patio, driveway, walkway, pool area atc. Pavers are also used as edging or as stepping stones. Pavers can be made of stone, brick, concrete, grass, and other materials. They come in all sorts of colors, shapes, patterns, and sizes. It is up to you or your landscape designer to choose which kind will fit your landscape theme or style.

Another common hard material for landscaping is crushed rock, which is also available in various sizes and colors. Crushed volcanic rock is a popular choice. Its red color gives a rustic appeal to the landscape. Other kinds of crushed rock include gravel, sandstone, quartz, limestone and others. Crushed rock is versatile, very low-maintenance, and affordable. They are commonly used for paths, driveways and drainage areas.

For constructing decks, steps, edges, walls, pergolas or gazebos, the most widely used material is timber. It is relatively inexpensive, easy to procure and work with. Consider using salvaged or recycled timber instead of new ones. You can re-use this material so make sure not to waste it.

Soils are valuable hard landscaping materials. To improve soil condition in the yard or garden, add organic fertilizing matter or compost. Remember to choose plants that match or thrive on the type of soil that area has.

Because of the broad range of hard landscaping materials, choosing the right product can be overwhelming and confusing. Just remember to select materials that will both go well with the site, the plants, other hard landscaping materials and the overall theme of the garden. For instance, materials made of steel and metal may not go well with an Asian inspired garden. Highly reflective materials are not ideal for areas that get a lot of sunlight. There are also certain pavers that are suitable only for light foot traffic and should not be used on driveways. You should also make sure that the hard landscaping materials you use are durable enough to withstand the type of weather and climate in your area.

Choosing the right hard landscaping materials is very important to a landscape designer. It is just like choosing the floor or fixtures in a house. The landscape designer must ensure that the hard landscaping materials will work together to truly enhance the surroundings.

Properties of the ceramic ball mill

The structure of Ceramic Ball Mill: Ceramic Ball Mill is mainly composed of a driving device, a cylinder body device, feeding device, discharging device and an electrical control device.Ceramic Ball Mill load is large, the power consumption is large, so the ceramic ball mill is usually used between 1 and 2 several hundred watts of power electric motor through a hydraulic coupler to drive the hardened gear reducer, and then by a pair of gears or belt drive the cylinder to rotate, thereby achieving the effect of grinding material. >

Ceramic ball mill working principle: the ball mill by feeding department, discharging part, turning part, a transmission part (reducer, small transmission gear, motors, electrical control) and other major parts.Ceramic ball mill has a horizontal cylinder, cylinder by a separator (drill has many small hole sieve) into 3 ~ 4 grinding cavity, each grinding cavity is provided with a certain shape and size of the grinding body, cylinder rotates, the material and grinding body in the friction force and the centrifugal force of cylinder body is lifted to a certain height, then under the action of gravity along a parabolic trajectory falling impact and grind the bottom of the cylinder body is another part of the material, and to produce the axial movement makes the material grinding and mixing.

Ceramic ball mill which belongs to the low-speed heavy load equipment, large loading capacity, starting torque is big, therefore ceramic ball mill is usually used additional starting motor shock initiation or soft starter to start, impact, and started after the completion of operation when the desired torque is reduced, so the energy saving aspect to have the very big space. Get beneficiation,Mineral Processing,rotary kiln From

Advantages Or Disadvantages Of Automatic Voltage Stabilizer

There are many more than just one type of voltage regulator stabilizer that is available on the market today. This specific device was created in the event that stabilization was needed to be brought to an unstable voltage fluctuation. The main reason as to why there is a fluctuation in the voltage is that the outer power web experiences a voltage load change which is an adjustable dual voltage regulator. The series is able to go through distortion which leads you to be able to make use of this series on a high quality basis. The voltage regulator stabilizer can be used in many different fields, ranging from precision machine tools, research, as well as medical facilities.

The difference between the two is the circuit power supplied as well as unit conversions. The automatic regulator has a few features that are different from the constant regulator; there is an alarm that sounds when an over-voltage is happening, and a time delay protection. It can also give you an extra low supply of power for when you are making use of the usual house hold appliances, which makes this device popular for domestic use. As for the constant inverting power supply, this is able to run with the use of a generator, therefore allowing you to have an unlimited power supply system in place.

For most applications Servo Electronic (AKA Electro-Mechanical) based Voltage Stabilizers & AC Power Conditioners have proved to be a very reliable and cost-efficient voltage stabilisation solution, with models readily available to accommodate an input voltage swing of in excess of 40% whilst still delivering an accuracy of 1% on the output.

Comprising a transformer having its secondary winding connected between the mains supply and the load, the primary voltage is automatically controlled through a motor driven variable transformer – ensuring a continuous, smooth and very stable output voltage.

High Voltage / Transient Spikes are normally limited by the inclusion of ‘Spike Clippers’. Such clippers typically limit transients to twice the peak voltage of the supply. However buyers should be aware that to reduce spikes to totally harmless levels it is often necessary to request that your supplier fits additional Spike Attenuation protection.

While Electronic Servo stabilisers do contain some moving parts, experience over the last 25 years in some of the most demanding power conditions has proved the design to be a very reliable method of delivering voltage regulation with only a low-level of ongoing maintenance required being deliverable by universally readily available skill sets.

The long-life expectancy, compact size and low cost of ownership makes servo electro-mechanical stabilisers economical solutions for a wide variety of applications in industry, commerce, mining, aerospace, computing and telecommunications and is normally the recommended design solution for most applications.

Advantages:

– Very competitively priced
– Negligible output waveform distortion
– Not Frequency dependent
– Size and weight advantages over other methods of stabilisation
– Will attenuate voltage spikes if required

Disadvantages:

– Moving parts requiring limited maintenance
– Lower speed of response compared to solid state designs

Get An Ideal Modular Kitchen For You

To start with Modular Kitchen I would like to call it an alternative living room in a household. The prominence and importance of it is gaining more importance in the home-furnishing industry. Now let me tell you what an ideal modular kitchen is.
The term owes its origin from modules mean small divisions. They are designed and created by designers to accommodate various household items within the kitchen. This is done to meet all kitchen requirements within it. It is also known by its other different terms like cabinets or units. Generally, modular kitchen is made up of pre-made cabinet parts. Cabinet parts are fitted together to make a whole functional and ready made kitchen. They are available in two popular forms: upper and lower units. Now traditional kitchens are fast fading from modern lifestyle for these sophisticated and elegant kitchens. Sometimes lack of space in household or limited space in flats may cause to the emergence of such modern kitchens. Having useful functionality, it is growing at a brisk pace of 25% per annum. Consequently, number of companies engaging themselves in this section is ascending day by day.
An ideal modular kitchen includes cabinets, storage facilities and other accessories. Now take a look on required accessories for it to bring perfect comfort and convenience for you.

Modular Kitchen Accessories

Cabinets: In modular kitchen, cabinets are one of the important and essential accessories. They may be of different types and sizes. They are generally used for storing containers of various sizes.
Cooker hoods: It is must for a modular kitchen, as it helps in eliminating smoke from the kitchen caused by cooking foods. For Indian cuisine it should be a part and parcel, as Indian recipes include strong aromatic foods.
Cooking ranges and ovens: Cooking unit should be fixed into the granite countertops. There must be either two burner and or four burner oven.

Shutters and shelves: There should be shutters and shelves to store up various crockery items like plates, cups, bowls, knife, spoon, forks etc.
Pull out drawers: There should be varieties of drawers for storing food items, aprons, utensils and spices.
There you need to include things like dishwasher, sink, oven, pantry etc.

For your modern amenities you could keep refrigerator, cookware, micro-oven, water-filter and many more.
You can take U-shape and the L-shape granted for your Modular Kitchen. Besides, for your decoration, you can use a vast range of colors and designs. For your door you can go for smooth, beveled edge or glass panel.

If you look for a modular kitchen in Kolkata and its outskirt, you can perfectly get it done by Essqaure. The company will take the full responsibility and absolute care to make your kitchen sophisticated, elegant, modern and well equipped.

Lessons Learned From A Failed Energy Efficiency Project

INTRODUCTION
You would think that energy efficiency is relatively simple: perform an energy audit, install the retrofits and then reap the energy savings. Unfortunately, it doesn”t always work that way. We performed an energy assessment of several stores of a major retail chain in the San Francisco Bay Area and identified a handful of low-cost retro-commissioning measures that had very promising potential. We quantified the expected savings and costs and returned after the project was installed. We then measured the savings using various methods and found either minimal or negative savings. The problem we discovered was that on nearly every measure, the contractors had repaired the hardware, but through various means had ensured that energy savings would not occur. This paper provides an account of the failed project at one store and the steps we took to remedy it. Specifically, this paper stresses the importance of Measurement and Verification and Commissioning of the retrofits.

DESCRIPTION OF THE BUILDING
The store, located in San Francisco, belongs to a well-known national retailer, whose name we will not divulge. The store is an aggregate of 3 buildings which have been joined together to comprise almost 1,000,000 square feet, of which over half is selling floor. Stock rooms and offices comprise the remainder of the space. The different buildings range between 8 and 11 stories tall.

The three buildings comprising the store were built at different times from the 1920s to the 1980s. Originally the buildings had different air handling, chilled water and hot water systems. Over the years, through energy conservation and facility improvement measures, the chilled water systems have been merged into one system.

There were no operating boilers in the store. Steam is provided to the store by an external vendor. Hot water is supplied to multi-zone air handling units and perimeter reheats in some areas of the store via heat exchangers.
There is one common cooling plant which houses two 500 ton centrifugal chillers (2004) which run all year. Chilled water is supplied to the Air Handling Units (AHUs) via primary/secondary chilled water loops. During the hottest months, both chillers run at around 90% full load””this happens about 5 days/yr. During the cooler months, one chiller runs at about 40% full load. If you have been to San Francisco you probably know that even in summer a typical day only reaches about 60 degrees . A properly designed and operating building in San Francisco should not need mechanical cooling most of the year, instead relying upon outside air to meet its cooling needs. This was obviously not the case .

A utility bill analysis identified an out of control building. Figure 1 presents twelve months of average usage per day versus average outdoor temperature. Each point represents a billing period. The superimposed red line represents the statistically insignificant trend. The lack of clear trend indicates that the building is either haphazardly controlled or that energy use varies due to some other variable. We believe mostly the former. During warmer periods (which are not that warm) the store uses more energy, indicating a variable cooling load based upon weather conditions. (An ideal system that uses outside air whenever possible should show a horizontal trend in this 48 to 66 degree temperature range.)

There are over fifty AHUs: a mixture of single zone, multi-zone, and variable air volume units. Each of the three sections contains different types of AHUs.
Electricity Costs for the store were over $2.5M per year. With the economic collapse in the fall of 2008, smart retailers were looking to cut costs wherever possible. One line item that could be cut was utilities. Saving 10% or more could add at least $250,000 to the bottom line.

BACKGROUND OF THE UTILITY PROGRAM
There may be several reasons why California uses less than 50% per capita of the energy than the rest of the country, but one major reason is the aggressive effort of the California Public Utilities Commission to cut energy usage. Commercial ratepayers of the investor owned utilities pay a fee in their utility bills that funds energy efficiency programs. These funds are then channeled to the investor owned utilities to promote energy efficiency. These utilities have over one hundred targeted programs aimed at different vertical markets such as: wineries, retail, hospitals, supermarkets, etc. Often these programs will include free energy audits or retro-commissioning services in conjunction with generous incentives to implement energy efficiency measures. In some cases, the utilities will pay for up to 100% of the cost for implementing the measures. The utilities administer some programs directly and outsource others. The outsourced programs are designed and administered by third party energy consultants.

Quantum Energy Services & Technologies, Inc. (QuEST), an energy consulting firm headquartered in Berkeley, administers a retail program for PG&E which covers the San Francisco Bay Area. This program offers retailers free retro-commissioning studies along with incentives to implement energy conservation measures found. The utilities give incentives to the building owners based upon the amount of energy saved. But in order for energy savings to be recognized by PG&E, these savings need to be measured and verified and then the savings calculations must pass a review by third party reviewers. Nobody gets paid if the work does not pass the third party review. The third party review process is necessary to prevent false claims of savings, or gaming of the system. The reviewers can be tough and require all assumptions to be documented and based upon published standards or guidelines. The drawback of third party review is that some measures are dropped as the Measurement and Verification (M&V) costs would be prohibitively expensive.

QuEST retained our company as a subcontractor to help out with the retail program. Our company performed Retro-Commissioning (RCx) services on 8 stores belonging to this unnamed retailer, and this paper is about one of the stores. However, the same story occurred at most of the stores. It wasn”t one failure, but many.

A NOTE ON THE LEVEL OF RCx RIGOR
RCx is different from energy auditing in that RCx typically involves a more detailed study of the building”s control systems and HVAC systems than energy audits. In addition, RCx typically focuses on repairing, recalibrating and reprogramming, rather than procuring new equipment. Simple paybacks for RCx projects typically are under 2 years. Examples of RCx measures are: repairing inoperable equipment, programming controls, demand control ventilation, and calibrating temperature sensors. Examples of energy audit measures (which are not considered RCx measures) are: installing energy efficient chillers, boilers or package units, converting single zone HVAC systems to variable air volume systems, and installing EMS systems. Energy audit measures often are more expensive and may have longer paybacks. On the other hand, true RCx studies are much more detailed, and thus much more expensive to conduct than energy audits. RCx studies usually involve data logging, functional testing of controls, operator training and post implementation commissioning which repeats much of the data logging and functional testing that was previously done. RCx is criticized by some as too heavy on the analysis, as it can require hundreds of hours of work just to perform the study, whereas energy audits consume much less labor.

In order to make the most efficient use of ratepayer dollars, in QuEST”s RCx program the amount of engineering time was scaled down to minimize the time spent on work that does not directly lead to energy savings. Rather than write commissioning plans, and 100-page Master List of Findings reports, the interim deliverable is instead an Excel workbook that describes the measure, states all assumptions and measured values, and calculates the savings. Equipment is data-logged or trended before and after the implementation of the measures. Calculations are made in Excel so they can be verified by third party reviewers. Written reports come later, but are less extensive than typical RCx reports.

ONSITE INVESTIGATION
Two engineers spent 3 days onsite examining the store”s mechanical systems, uncovering problems, and identifying RCx Measures. Our work to this point was nearly identical to an energy audit.
Once the RCx Measures were identified, the list of RCx Measures was given to the customer who then decided which of them should be pursued. The list also was approved by the third party reviewer.

MEASURES FOUND
We found the store could save about $300,000 in both RCx and Retrofit Measures, which, with incentives offered a simple payback of less than six months. That is 12% of their energy spend. The following measure types were identified and approved by all parties:

Retrofit Measures
1.Install Variable Speed Drives (VSDs) on Multi-Zone Air Handling Units (AHUs).
2.Installation of VSDs on secondary chilled water loops.
RCx Measures
1.Repair economizer control on some air handlers. Many outside air dampers were rusted in place. A two by six was used to prop one open.
2.Repair a small number of faulty VSDs, some of which were in bypass running at 100% fan speed.
3.Reconnect static pressure lines. Some VSDs were running at full speed because the lines running to the static pressure sensors in the ducting had been previously destroyed by contractors.
4.Repair/Replace stuck chilled water valves. These valves were cooling whether the AHUs called for cooling or not. As a result, sales floor temperatures ranged from 62 degrees to 70 degrees.
5.Connect some AHUs to the Energy Management System. These AHUs were running wild and had no control at all.

DATA LOGGING
Once the measures were selected by the customer, QuEST engineers placed data loggers to measure pre-implementation temperatures and power. Temperatures measured included Outside Air Temperature (OAT), Return Air Temperature (RAT), Mixed Air Temperature (MAT) and Supply Air Temperature (SAT). Fan Motor kW were also logged for those units on VSDs. Spot measurements were taken of Fan Motor kW for AHUs that were not on VSDs.

SAVINGS CALCULATION
Energy savings were estimated using bin data simulations. Like-type AHUs were combined. Special care was taken in calculating energy savings to ensure that savings were not double-counted. Each energy conservation measure was modeled assuming the prior measures were already implemented. We integrated the interval data that we collected into the bin data simulations. To do this, we created regressions of our variables (RAT, MAT, SAT, kW) versus OAT. These regressions were used to project RATs, MATs, SATs and kW for other outdoor air temperatures that were not included in our sample.

INSTALLATION
Once we had estimated savings using our bin simulation models and provided measure costs, the customer decided which measures to implement. They then hired contractors to implement the measures. VSDs were installed and repaired, economizer dampers repaired, AHUs connected to the EMS system, etc.

M&V PROVES NO SAVINGS
Once the implementation was completed, QuEST engineers returned to the site and again data logged the same temperatures and power as before. The resulting data, RATs, MATs, SATs and kWs, was again regressed against OAT. Using the regression, RATs, MATs, SATs, and kW values were again extrapolated and placed into the bin simulations.

The resulting calculations demonstrated the unthinkable. Not only were the energy conservation measures we had recommended not saving energy, the affected systems at the store were using more energy than before! Actually, this could be seen from just looking at the interval data. It was obvious that the economizers and variable speed drives were not working as intended. The “repaired” economizers were letting in less outside air than before, and the variable speed drives were still commanding the fans to run at a constant load, but at a higher speed than before.

QuEST alerted the customer that their investments were not saving energy. Facility personnel then investigated the problems, found them, and corrected them.

Even though the contractors had made the economizers operational (as opposed to frozen), the damper actuators were not calibrated correctly. When dampers needed to be fully open, they were not. When dampers needed to be at minimum position, they were not. The variable speed drives were also installed incorrectly. Some wiring and controls issues were resolved and the units started operating as expected. Once these issues were resolved, M&V was performed again. We repeated the data-logging and placed this information into our bin simulations, and again projected the annual savings.
There are many ways energy efficiency projects can go wrong.

“Faulty recommendations
“Poor implementation
“Untrained staff who compromise all the energy conservation measures undertaken

Faulty recommendations may arise from a lack of understanding of how systems operate or should operate. Years of experience, and a good understanding of physics and control theory is necessary to make sound recommendations.

Poor implementation has many causes, but often can be traced to the mindset that having the right equipment will make the difference. But as the lessons learned here illustrate, installing the right hardware is only half the solution. It needs to be integrated into the system and operate according to a logical and beneficial sequence of operations.

The last item is especially troublesome because it is so common. Even if the right hardware is installed and controls optimized, small changes to the sequence of operations made to “fix” local problems may have large consequences on overall system performance over time. Changing supply air temperatures at the air handler to resolve hot or cold complaints may upset the balance of the system and cause problems elsewhere. Professors at Texas A&M University have pointed out that in the absence of continuous monitoring, a building”s performance will fall to the level of the least-trained operator within two years.

HOW TO AVOID FAILED ENERGY EFFICIENCY PROJECTS
There are a couple of ways to avoid projects that fail to produce savings. After equipment is installed, it needs to be commissioned by a third party, not the contractor who implemented the ECMs. Commissioning can be expensive, but it is worth it. However, just because the equipment has been deemed operational by the commissioning agent, that doesn”t mean it is saving what was expected. Commissioning will tell you if the equipment is working as it should. To determine if you are actually saving what was expected, M&V needs to be done on the building. Although M&V can appear as a waste of money to some, it caught this disaster before it was too late.

Unfortunately, building owners often value engineer commissioning and M&V out of their projects and leave themselves open to big disappointments in their energy efficiency projects. M&V is like insurance””sure, it costs money up front, but the reassurance of knowing the project is done correctly should be worth far more than the initial outlay. What other product would you purchase without verifying that you actually received what you paid for? Why should energy efficiency be any different?

CONCLUSION
Unfortunately, energy efficiency isn”t as simple as we would wish. Energy consultants may deliver quality energy audits and RCx studies, but merely implementing sound energy efficiency recommendations does not guarantee energy savings. The weak link is often in the commissioning of the measures to ensure they are doing what they are intended to do.
To avoid underperforming on your energy efficiency measures, we suggest the following three strategies:

1. Commission what you implement with third-party commissioning experts. Commissioning agents are not interested in selling hardware. They are interested in making systems operate at peak performance. They understand physics and control theory and can identify and repair problems quickly.

2. Track your energy savings using M&V. Even using something as simple as utility bill tracking software can provide some insight into building performance. An increase in monthly energy usage when a decrease was expected would have triggered an investigation into the cause. Verifying performance at the system level (as we did), while more difficult and expensive, would have isolated the problem much more quickly and accurately.

3. Provide proper training so that your facility staff doesn”t override or bypass your energy efficiency projects. Although we barely treated this topic in this paper, this is probably the single most effective step you can take. Your staff is the brains behind building operation, despite what EMS vendors may say. Having the smartest control system will do no good if it is operated by the dumbest operators.

Which Windows Buyers Guide To Establishing The Energy Efficiency Of Replacement Windows

Energy efficient windows will not only help to reduce your heating bill, they also increase comfort and help the environment through a lower carbon footprint. They can be made using any frame material or combination of materials. A good tool to establish whether replacement windows are energy efficient is the British Fenestration Rating Council’s (BFRC) scheme for rating the energy efficiency of windows. This is a national system and is accepted as a method to show compliance with the building regulations for new or replacement window installations. However, at present the scheme is still voluntary.

The energy rating scheme uses traffic light energy labels for windows on a scale from A to G that are similar to the energy labels you can find on most household appliances. A-graded windows are the most energy efficient. Each window rated by the BFRC has a unique label displaying the overall rating (A-G) and the energy index which shows how much energy the window will save or lose once it has been installed. This depends on a number of factors such as the building, local climate and indoor temperature. A positive value in the index indicates that the window lets more heat in through the glass into the room than is being lost through the window. Such a window is a free energy supplier. A-rated windows will have a positive energy index. Values are given in kilowatt hours per square metre per year.

The label also shows the window’s U and L values. These are measures of a window’s ability to reduce heat loss during indirect radiation exposure during the winter. Low U values mean less heat loss and translate into lower heating costs. The L value indicates the effective heat loss due to air penetration. Another value shown is the solar heat gain. This value is closely linked to the U value and measures the window’s ability to reduce heat gain during direct radiation exposure in the summer. A lower value means less direct heat enters the room and it stays cooler.

The type of glass used has a direct impact on the U value and the solar gain factor. The most energy efficient glass for double glazing is low emissivity (Low-E) glass. This often has an invisible coating of metal oxide on one of the two sheets of glass that make the window, normally on one of the internal panes. This makes the glass reflective, letting sunlight and heat in and cutting the amount that can get out again, thus making the home warmer in the winter. In the summer it reflects the heat back and makes your home cooler.

Very energy efficient windows might use gases like argon, xenon or krypton in the gap between the sheets of glass. The more efficient windows will also use pane spacers around the inside edges to keep the two panes of glass apart that contain little or no metal.

Selecting energy efficient windows has become easier as you can compare window energy ratings. The window energy rating scheme checks all components of the window (including the frame and any casement) and rates the whole window on its energy saving properties. Windows rated B or better are endorsed by the Energy Saving Trust. Energy labels allow you to compare and select windows based on their specific energy performance rather than just relying manufacturers’ claims, thus enabling you to make informed purchasing decisions.