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Building Dashboard Tracks Energy Usage in Two Residence Halls

With the installation of Building Dashboard in the lobbies of Floyd and Stuart halls, RU's energy and water consumption metrics are now transparent.

As they walk through the lobbies, the buildings' 300 residents now pass the Building Dashboard, a digital scoreboard displaying real-time data on their usage of water, kilowatts of electricity, equivalent BTUs of steam and carbon dioxide emissions as well as energy costs.

"Viewers can see the building's vital signs," said Julio Stephens, RU sustainability coordinator. "Our goal is to encourage the RU community to look at the dashboard, understand and compare consumption patterns, and make a commitment to conserving as part of their commitment to sustainability."

dorm-dashboard

Provost Sam Minner (center) talks with Professor Rick Roth (left) and Dean Dennis Grady (right) in the lobby of Stuart Hall.

Colorful interactive graphs enliven the energy usage statistics on the boards, created by Lucid Design group. Data is fed to the system by RU Facilities Management instantaneously, so energy usage can be seen and compared by building, by date or by time of day. The sites also offer frameworks for competitions, green tips and local weather conditions. To view the dashboard, go to http://buildingdashboard.com/clients/radford/.

"We want members of the campus community to spend time using the dashboard and then sharing this information with others so we can positively affect our environment, Stephens said.

Data on energy used for electricity, heating and water in the buildings is being collected for study by a group of RU researchers into the effects of various interventions on altering campus consumer energy behavior. The research team includes Richard Roth, professor of geospatial science; Allison Wisecup, assistant professor of sociology; Dennis Grady, dean of the RU College of Graduate and Professional Studies; Joanne Alger, senior mechanical engineer, Department of Facilities Management; the Residential Life staff; and Stephens.

The installation of the dashboards and subsequent behavioral analysis are made possible by a grant from the Jessie Ball DuPont Fund.

Sep 18, 2012
Don Bowman
(540) 831-7523
dbowman@radford.edu