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EcoFactor and the Truly Smart Grid

| Saturday November 21st, 2009 | 0 Comments

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Technology works best when it’s least intrusive and does the heavy lifting for you. Apple understands this. And so, it seems, does EcoFactor, the winner of the recent Clean Tech Open.

ecofactor smart energy management diagram

What it does behind the scenes is fairly complex, but for the user, easy and out of the way: It keeps your home at an optimum temperature, via an externally managed system. And it doesn’t require you to buy expensive or not yet available equipment.

You can, with a little diligence, use either the energy saver setting on your thermostat, or program your thermostat. But as EcoFactor puts it, “The energy management solutions offered today – such as the “Energy Saver” mode on many thermostats – are of the “one size fits all” breed. These solutions use the same savings program for a five-bedroom home in Texas as they do for a two-bedroom apartment in New York, without taking into account constantly changing outdoor temperatures or a home’s unique thermal characteristics. EcoFactor uniquely offers intelligent, automated action for adaptive management and control of HVAC use.”

Come again?

Basically, it begins collecting thousands of data points about your home and local area – 24,000 in total, enabling it to precisely control your heating and air conditioning to work for you, your energy bill, and the environment with reduced loads on the local energy plants.

This is truly smart energy use. Consumers see up to thirty percent savings, only requiring a thermostat capable for 2-way communication, an Internet gateway (aka modem/router), a connection to the Internet, and EcoFactor’s energy management system. With no additional software needed, this sounds like it’s largely plug and play.

Where else are you seeing technology effectively put to use to help individuals and businesses easily be more energy efficient? Let’s discuss, below.

Paul Smith is a sustainable business innovator, the founder of GreenSmith Consulting, and has an MBA in Sustainable Management from Presidio Graduate School in San Francisco. He creates interest in, conversations around, and business for green (and greening) companies, via social media.


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