New Smart Building Technology May Soon Help You Save Energy

Introducing the EMMA system of energy efficiency.

EMMA smart building technology makes saving energy easier, with advanced energy monitoring and glowing "eggs" that show real-time energy use.

There’s an exciting, brand new technology aimed at reducing a building’s carbon footprint. Does it have applications for residential homes? We think so.

The technology is called EMMA (Environmental Management Solution) and it was developed by Australia-based sustainability consultancy Knowledge Global. EMMA is an automated solution for monitoring, tracking and forecasting a building’s carbon footprint. EMMA collects information about electricity use, human traffic, weather forecasts, waste and even air quality to build a daily snapshot of a building’s carbon footprint. EMMA then compares that snapshot against historical data to determine an “optimal forecast” for that day’s carbon footprint. If the energy efficiency of the building deviates from the optimal forecast, building owners and managers are alerted via cell phone or e-mail (or both) about the issues.

Perhaps the most interesting feature of EMMA is the wireless “eggs” that the systems uses to keep occupants aware of their energy efficiency. These eggs are placed at the end of hallways, in lobbies and other places and they glow green or red based upon a building’s energy efficiency. This way, people are constantly made aware of the energy they’re using and are more conscious about their affect on the environment.

It’s not a far cry to think this could be easily implemented in residential homes. Monitors could be set up in a home to track electricity use, water use and other metrics and fed into an online interface.

This way, consumers could log in to a web interface and get updates on their home’s energy efficiency at any time. You can also place the wireless egg monitors in a home, which would be a fantastic way for average consumers to keep aware of their energy efficiency.

Imagine seeing an egg glow red in your home, checking the energy statistics of your home online and making adjustments based up on that information.

Pretty neat, huh? Read more about EMMA .