Eschelon headquarters reception
Echelon integrated its technologies while building its San Jose, Calif., headquarters during the California energy crisis. The digital systems amounted to a modest additional cost of $3 per square foot, according to the company. Its systems by 30 percent within three minutes, according to Echelon. And if widespread within the service area of an overwhelmed utility, such precision might potentially help prevent rolling blackouts.
"The gee whiz thing is all about energy," CEO Ken Oshman told CNET. "You can create the largest service in alternative energy by conserving energy. It's here, it's economical, and you don't need enormous government subsidies to pay for it. That alone is greater than the total available solar and wind power."
Echelon's LonWorks open standard platform enables nearly 100 million devices of various brands and types to "talk" to networks that can be managed online. The company also makes transceivers and microprocessors forming the infrastructure of the networks.
The company is planning to pursue certification through the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design ratings of the nonprofit U.S. Green Building Council. However, such sophisticated automations would get the same amount of credit toward the green ratings as a nearby bike rack or bus stop. Echelon executives hope green standards will award more credits for energy automation in the future.
May 14, 2008 4:03 PM PDT
Photo by: Elsa Wenzel/CNET Networks
| Caption by: Elsa Wenzel
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