Green Buildings

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“The dc building power market is projected to grow significantly over the next several years, and among the driving forces is the need to improve efficiency and reduce electricity costs in several areas. According to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in 2006, data centres and servers in the United States accounted for approximately 1.5% of the nation’s total electricity consumption. To put this in perspective, the EPA stated that this total exceeded the electricity consumed by the entire nation’s colour televisions, and is similar to the amount of electricity consumed by approximately 5.8 million average TV households. In addition, energy consumption in data centres in the US is projected to continue to grow, and double every five years.” -- From Sandip

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As other proponents of dc power distribution architecture, Powerland believes that it has the potential to eliminate the biggest sources of energy loss and waste in traditional ac systems: the multiple back and forth transformations and conditioning needed to step voltage down for use by various loads. If those transformations cannot be rooted out, the number of them should at least be minimized: Go Hybrid.  

Expanding on earlier work done related to dc-powered data centers, dc power distribution standards for commercial, industrial and residential buildings are being set in Europe, Japan and United States. Commercial products have already started to appear, and the market for dc building power is surging forward. Japan and US lead in the installation of dc power infrastructures in buildings. Europe is leading in the development of detailed standards for next-generation buildings. Energy-efficiency standards, including the goal of zero-net-energy buildings, solid-state lighting, distributed energy resources such as photovoltaic panels on roofs, lower installed cost, lower long-term cost of ownership, and the increased flexibility and sustainability of dc-power, even the emergence of plug-hybrid electric vehicles, are among the factors driving the adoption of these new powering architectures.  

The whole building has a local dc power network which can be powered by ac grid or by renewable energy like solar. High voltage dc bus concept is adopted for local transmission to reduce the loss in the wire, while low voltage bus is regulated from high voltage bus to feed into various loads. A few dc-to-dc conversions might be necessary but normally are much more efficient, cheaper and reliable than ac-to-dc conversions.  

In this architecture, native DC power generated from renewable energy sources (like solar) does not need to be converted to AC electricity to be compatible with existing AC distribution methods.     

With the increasing adoption of electric vehicle, battery banks inside the EV can be an alternative source of dc power. In addition, battery bank in the building can serve as the energy storage tank to stabilize this micro-grid.  

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Powerland sees computing and lighting as two major loads for commercial buildings, and put real efforts to make energy-efficient solutions for green computing and green lighting become real. Powerland has successfully developed technologies for high efficient desktop power, dc-powered server power, and DC input LED driver.

Smart, digitally-controlled power and its management is also an essential to the DC green building. Through intelligent digital power management algorism, a wide variety of different energy sources and loads are coordinated seamlessly.  

Powerland is working actively with Emerge Alliance, an open industry association, to promote the rapid adoption of safe, dc power distribution using in commercial building interiors.

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