Carnegie Mellon’s Energy Sleuths: Using Data for More Sustainable Buildings

| Josh Henretig

Nearly 70 percent of all electricity in the United States goes toward building operations—heating and cooling systems, lighting, ventilation and plug loads—and over 80 percent of carbon dioxide emissions in the world come from buildings. Researchers in the “living lab” at Carnegie Mellon’s Intelligent Workplace are working to determine how they can use data to address some of these problems. They’re exploring how to give people who work in buildings a comfortable environment while using the least possible energy, how to make people accountable for their own energy footprints, and how technology can assist in that journey.

These researchers have been using advances in technologies such as cloud computing, data analytics and services like Microsoft’s Azure Machine Learning to gather information and determine ways to answer these questions. According to Vivian Loftness, a researcher working on the “living lab” project, “Technology is helping us get to better insights, and faster. That can only help as this movement continues to ripple across the country in the next few years, reshaping how we live, work and play.”

To learn more about the amazing work that the Carnegie Mellon team is doing to help buildings operate more sustainably, check out this feature story on the Microsoft News Center.


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