Understanding control plug and process loads (PPL) in your buildings

Numerous control strategies exist for reducing plug and process load (PPL) energy. Selecting the correct control strategy for particular devices, building types, and occupant needs can maximize energy savings.

    NREL has developed guidance for evaluating and selecting a range of technologies to control plug and process loads.
    Subject matter experts walk through the details of the APS specification and provide examples of how stakeholders can apply the specification (e.g., tenants in leased spaces, building owners and managers across their portfolios, utilities for energy incentive programs).
    This specification provides detailed selection criteria for five major APSs, and sets standards for modeling APSs. It is intended to help those who procure APSs select the most effective models for their commercial buildings.
    Each advanced power strip has three outlet types for equipment with various electricity needs. This infographic from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) describes the uses for each outlet type to help determine the smartest way to power office devices and save energy.
    This paper documents the process (and results) of applying advanced power strips with various control approaches.
    GSA’s Green Proving Ground (GPG) program recently assessed the effectiveness of advanced power strips (APS) in managing plugload energy consumption in eight of its buildings. Three types of plug-load reduction strategies were evaluated: schedule timer control, load-sensing control, and a combination of the two. Results underscored the effectiveness of schedule-based functionality, which reduced plug loads at workstations by 26% and by nearly 50% in printer rooms and kitchens.
    Many consumer electronics continue to draw power even when they are switched off. This is known as a "vampire load," and can add up to about $200 in yearly energy costs for an average home. By replacing standard power strips with an Advanced Power Strip (APS), you can significantly cut the amount of electricity used by your home office and entertainment center devices, and save money on your electric bill.


Commercial, Data Centers, Education, Local Government, Multifamily, State Government


Building expertise within my organization, Identifying or evaluating energy-saving technologies

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Data center, Education, Healthcare, Lodging, Office, Multifamily, Retail


Plug loads, Advanced Power Strips