Posts Tagged ‘sustainable design’

DraftLogic Electrical and Global Warming?

Thursday, November 19th, 2009

OK, so what does a building electrical systems design expert system have to do with global warming?  Well, it turns out that building electrical systems design, whether done with DraftLogic Electrical or in some other manner, has a LOT to do with global warming.  This is because efficient, right-sized, and accurate design reduces global warming.  Inversely: inefficient, over-sized, and inaccurate design contributes to global warming.

DIFFERENT MOTIVATIONS, SAME RESULT

Since some of you may not believe in the science behind the global warming threat, how about we talk about things that every building owner desires: safe design that minimizes construction and operating costs and yet meets any future expansion needs they identify.  The choices made by the building electrical systems designer are the same to meet these needs and to minimize the building’s contribution to global warming.

INITIAL EFFECTS

Efficient, right-sized, and accurate design will result in the minimum amount of devices required to provided the needed level of services.  With the right amount of devices, connected in the most efficient manner, the materials required to service the building will be minimized.  This reduces the cost of construction and at the same time reduces the amounts of these goods that have to be manufactured from raw materials and then transported to the building site, thus contributing less to global warming during the construction phase.

ONGOING EFFECTS

Once built, the right-sized design will consume less electricity than an overbuilt design.  This reduces operating costs and, of course, contributes less to global warming assuming at least some of the energy is coming from non-renewable resources.

Whether you believe in global warming or not, I think we can all agree that efficient, right-sized, and accurate design is better.

WHY NOT NOW?

How do we make efficient, right-sized, and accurate design happen?  Well, that means bringing back some of the detailed and repetitive calculations/analysis into building electrical systems design:  performing lighting calculations for each space (e.g. zonal cavity), supplying the needed lighting/receptacles for each type of space and no more, circuiting efficiently to maximize neutral sharing, drawing branch circuit wiring to also maximize neutral sharing while minimizing the amount of wire needed to interconnect everything, and finally sizing the feeders to be safe but not overly large.  Some designers at some companies have been forced to reduce the accuracy of their selections in these regards due to design time limitations and design fee budget limitations.

Performing the detailed calculations and analysis required for the above would add A LOT of time to how long it takes you to design a project, unless your CAD suddenly got A LOT smarter and did the extra work for you!

MAKING IT HAPPEN

Enter DraftLogic Electrical!  DraftLogic Electrical inherently does all those detailed calculations that you don’t have time to do and may have been forced to ‘rule of thumb’ and ‘educated guess’ around.  With DraftLogic Electrical, you take a lot less time to do a lot more accurate design work.  That’s good for you, good for your client, and good for the environment.

A LESSON FOR ALL OF US

Since I cannot resist the urge to preach, and this is MY blog, I am going to do it.

Above I detail how the decisions made by building electrical systems designers affect global warming.  Talking above that major and contentious issue, we can also say ‘the sustainability of the environment that our species lives within’.  Basically ANY job that ANY one of us is doing can also be shown to have similar effects–do you want to be part of the problem or part of the solution?

Kindest Regards,
Dean Whitford
Chief Operating Officer
DraftLogic