October's issue of AutomatedBuildings.com republished our "Executive Summary" with connection to supporting documentation of the valuable research that Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has been doing for the California Energy Commission's PIER Group. It is located at www.automatedbuildings.com/news-/oct05/articles/lbl/lbl.htm.

On September 7, 2005, Mary Ann Piette and her team, consisting of David S. Watson, Naoya Motegi, and Norman Bourassa from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, prepared a report on their findings of last year's automated demand response tests. The report is titled, Findings from the 2004 Fully Automated Demand Response Tests in Large Facilities, and I have extracted highlights to make our readers aware of ADR and LBL's research:

This report describes the results of the second season of research to develop and evaluate the performance of new automated demand response (Auto-DR) hardware and software technology in large facilities. Demand response (DR) is a set of time-dependant activities that reduce or shift electricity use to improve electric grid reliability, manage electricity costs, and provide systems that encourage load shifting or shedding during times when the electric grid is near its capacity or electric prices are high. DR is a subset of demand-side management, which also includes energy efficiency and conservation. The overall goal of this research project was to support increased penetration of DR in large facilities through the use of automation and better understanding of DR technologies and strategies in large facilities.

The participants included 18 geographically distributed sites, covering 36 buildings. The participants include several office buildings, plus a supermarket, cafeteria, industrial process sites, university library, and a postal processing and distribution center. New technology was developed to explore and evaluate the capabilities of current controls and communications for Auto-DR with EMCS and XML. The project involved extensive outreach and recruitment efforts, and general publicity to audiences such as building engineers, utilities, property management companies, commissioning providers, and energy policy community.

The maximum aggregate savings over the three-hour shed was 1,453 kW, or about 24% of the total aggregated demand for all five sites.

This research has demonstrated that Auto-DR systems are technically feasible for buildings with a wide range of control systems from highly sophisticated EMCS with telemetry communication to conventional EMCS. We demonstrated the features of Auto-DR with EMCS and XML.

Drafting An Interoperabilty Constitution

In December, there will be a convention to discuss and ratify an "Interoperability Constitution" for electric system components.

The GridWise Architecture Council will hold a constitutional convention in Philadelphiaon December 6-7, 2005. The purpose of this convention is to discuss and ratify an "Interoperability Constitution" with a set of fundamental, strategic statements that will facilitate the interoperation of electric system components. The convention will provide visibility, an opportunity for stakeholder buy-in, establishment of GridWise champions, and ratified constitutional statements.

The GridWise Architecture Council was created in 2004 following the August 2003 Northeast blackout and in response to Congress and the DOE's call for a next-generation electric system. This Architecture Council brings the advancements occurring in information technology to electric system operations by establishing broad industry consensus in support of the technical principles that enable the interoperability necessary to transform electric power operations into a system that enhances our socioeconomic wellbeing and security, while optimizing energy cost.

Can you feel the energy and the opportunity for our industry's support?

The building automation industry is being swept into an active part of the national electrical energy grid. Load interaction in lieu of increased generation and grid expansion is the new reality, not just a radical thought. It is a logical approach of using existing installed technologies to solve real problems. Could we be in a better place and time as an industry? This is an opportunity beyond our greatest dreams and elevates our industry out of the weeds and very much into the public view. Are we ready? Can we give ADR and GridWise's Interoperability Constitution our full support? This is the killer application we have all been looking for, so let's not let these opportunities go unchecked.

Find out how we can best support this opportunity for the building automation industry to become a part of a much larger plan. Let's show the GridWise folks and the public how we can breath interactive life into the energy-gobbling buildings we have created in the past. We may not make these building totally green, but we can make them tolerable identities on the national electrical grid. ES