Putting Vacant Buildings to Sleep

Webinar June 16, 2020

Office and campus buildings consume a lot of electricity when nobody is in them. Why? When UC Davis experienced a 90% reduction in occupancy, electricity use only fell by 15%. When the Empire State Building was nearly 100% vacant, electricity use only fell 28%. What is using all this energy? Can it be safely switched off or reduced? In this webinar, Alan Meier will share the results of a study he led at UC Davis to investigate these types of questions. One of their key findings was that audio/video racks in classrooms are surprisingly large consumers of energy. Alan will discuss some of the challenges to saving electricity and understanding building occupancy. This study and continued work in this area will help UC Davis and other campuses/offices save energy.


Dr. Alan Meier–Adjunct Professor, UC Davis Environmental Science & Policy; Faculty Researcher, UC Davis Energy and Efficiency Institute; Senior Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

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The Honda Smart Home at UC Davis: A Showcase of Environmental Innovation

Webinar June 11, 2020
In this webinar, Michael will provide a virtual tour and introduction to the Honda Smart Home, which showcases technologies that enable zero net energy living and transportation. After his short presentation, there will be Q&A time.

The Honda Smart Home in UC Davis West Village is capable of producing more energy on-site from renewable sources than it consumes annually, including enough energy to power a Honda Fit EV for daily commuting. A Honda-developed home energy management system and an energy efficient design allow the occupants to use less than half of the energy of a similarly sized new home in the Davis area for heating, cooling and lighting. The home is also three times more water-efficient than a typical U.S. home. In addition to showcasing Honda’s vision for sustainable, zero-carbon living and personal mobility, the home also functions as a living laboratory where the company, along with researchers from UC Davis and Pacific Gas and Electric Co., evaluate new technologies and business opportunities at the intersection of housing, transportation, energy and the environment.

Michael Koenig, Project Leader, Honda Smart Home

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Energy Bites – May 29, 2020

Bite 1: Electrical Performance of Distributed DC Lighting Systems–Drew Harper, California Lighting Technology Center
Bite 2: Sending the Wrong Signal? Revisiting the CPUC’s Marginal GHG Emissions Assumptions–Greg Miller, Center for Water-Energy Efficiency & Energy Graduate Group
Bite 3: Energy Load Shifting Strategies for Wastewater Treatment Plants–Erin Musabandesu, Center for Water-Energy Efficiency & Energy Graduate Group
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The Path to COVID-19 Recovery–How to Improve Indoor Air Quality when Reopening K-12 Schools

Webinar May 28, 2020

Since COVID-19 could potentially be spread through the air, there is a role for building ventilation and filtration to help reduce airborne exposures to infectious aerosols. In this webinar we will review research and recommendations for improving indoor air quality in K-12 classrooms when (or prior to) reopening schools during COVID-19 recovery.


Rengie Chan-Research Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Theresa Pistochini, Engineering Manager, UC Davis Western Cooling Efficiency Center

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Energy Bites – May 8, 2020

Speaker 1: Addressing Key Challenges for Model Predictive Control Applied to HVAC SystemsMatt Ellis, Chemical Engineering
Speaker 2: Duct Losses for Variable Speed Residential HVAC SystemsFred Meyers, Western Cooling Efficiency Center
Time: 12pm to 1pm
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May 8 Webinar – Internship and Career Panel: Tips for Success

In this webinar, three current/recent UC Davis graduates in the energy field will share their background and internship/career experiences. There will plenty of Q&A time so please bring your questions.
Jean Ji – Master’s student, UC Davis Energy Graduate Group
Nick Pappas – Director of Strategic Initiatives, CalCCA
Mekdem Wright – Sustainability Consultant, Anthesis Group
Time: 10am to 11am PST
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