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How Much Iron Do We Need At What Levels Does Iron Become Toxic

Recommended Daily Allowance
There is no one single daily recommended allowance of iron for everyone at all stages of their lives. Because of this fact, many consumers may think that they should take the same amount of iron that they have always taken or take the same amount as a friend or relative. This may not be enough to suit their particular nutritional needs or it may be too much. Fortunately, there are many sources of dietary iron and no withdrawal symptoms to if a patient discovers that he or she is consuming too much iron.

America’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) publishes a chart breaking down the differences in the daily recommended dosage of iron:

*Males over 19: 8 milligrams
*Male vegetarians: 14 mg
*Females 19 – 50: 18 mg
*Female vegetarians: 32 mg
*Females over 50: 8 mg
*Pregnant women: 27 mg
*Nursing women: 10 mg
*Newborns to 6 months: 0.27 mg
*Babies 7 12 months: 11 mg
*Children 1 – 3 years: 7 mg
*Children 4 8: 10 mg
*Children 9 13: 8 mg
*Children 14 19: 10 mg

This is only a rough guideline. Patients with particular illnesses, women with exceptionally heavy periods, individuals with vitamin C deficiencies or individuals who habitually consume beverages like tea that interfere with the body’s absorption may require a doctor to determine their daily levels. Some trial and error may be needed.

Why Bother with Iron?
Iron performs several functions in the body. Most importantly, it helps blood transport oxygen throughout the body. This is why it can be found in just about every cell of the human body. Oxygen and other chemicals help the cell absorb glucose (blood sugar), the cell’s fuel. Iron is also thought to play a significant role in the human immune system and in brain function. Although very few individuals can attract a magnet, all healthy individuals have minute portions of iron in their cells.

Patients with iron anemia (also called iron poor blood) feel exhausted all the time, despite how much sleep and exercise they obtain. Their skin is often pale or more pale than usual. They may feel as if a weight is on their lungs and complain of being faint or short of breath. Without the proper amounts of oxygen traveling through the bloodstream, the body does not have sufficient energy to work at maximum efficiency. Life for the iron anemic is dreary and overwhelming because of the fatigue. It takes a tremendous effort to even accomplish simple tasks.

Symptoms of iron anemia are very similar to those of other chronic conditions such as clinical depression and thyroid problems. Taking extra dietary iron will not help these conditions and will unnecessarily prolong the patient’s suffering. This is why it is important for anyone with these symptoms to go to a doctor for a blood test to obtain a proper diagnosis. Without a proper diagnosis, there cannot be proper treatment.

What is Dietary Iron?
Dietary iron is comprised of proteins and comes in two types called heme (found in hemoglobin in the blood) and non-heme (found in myoglobin, found in muscles and bones.) Dietary iron is marketed under the name ferrous sulfate, which is easily available in multivitamin supplements or iron sulfate supplements. But it is also abundant in multiple food sources. Vitamin C has been shown to help the body absorb iron more efficiently, thus eating foods rich in vitamin C or taking vitamin C supplements is highly recommended.

A common misconception is that meat is the superior source of iron from food. Larger quantities of iron can be found in similar size portions of porridge, oats and vitamin-fortified breakfast cereals. Iron may also be found in many vegetables, milk, eggs, beans, nuts, whole grains and some starchy foods such as grits. Many meal replacement powders, liquids and bars contain iron. Some beverages such as tap water may also contain ferrous sulfate.

Avoiding Iron Overdose
The human body is not an efficient absorber of iron. On average, the body only absorbs 10% of the iron it consumes. But iron overload is possible and can bring debilitating symptoms. Clifford S. Spanierman, MD of Lutheran General Hospital and a specialist in pediatrics and emergency medicine, estimates iron toxicity to be a major factor in the deaths of children under six years old. Dr. Spanierman speculates that children may take iron supplements in the mistaken belief that they are sweets.

Symptoms of iron overdose are dramatic, often including copious amounts of diarrhea and vomiting. Dr. Spanierman reports that if a patient can stay conscious and get to a hospital, the patient has an excellent chance of surviving. But if the patient becomes unconscious, the chances of recovery are very slim. In extreme cases, blood transfusions are needed in order to quickly clean the excess iron from the body. Dr. Spanierman added that women over 65 were also prone to iron overdose because they were not aware that their iron needs drop significantly after the completion of menopause.

A good general rule to avoid iron overdose is to avoid taking an iron supplement if not instructed to by a physician. Because of the dangers of iron overdose, it is never a good idea to self-diagnose one’s health problems.

Conclusion
Individuals can suffer if they do not have enough iron or die if they consume too much. Iron is easily available in the modern diet through natural foods, nutritional supplements and iron-fortified foods. Never guess as to the amount of iron to consume. Consult a physician with any questions.

Choosing A Bosch Fridge Freezer

Technology is intertwined with just about everything we have today including the BOSCH Fridge Freezer. As technology advances, so does the rest of our lives. We can communicate faster, work smarter and live better. A refrigerator freezer unit is very important to have as we need to keep our perishable foods and drink properly chilled and BOSCH provides appliances to complete such a task.

How many times does your fridge get opened every day? Probably a lot as it is an appliance we depend on so it must be durable and extremely reliable. Many of the features available in refrigerator freezer units today are almost fully automated appliances. They have become digitalized, energy efficient, frost free and have LED functions in addition to providing us clean ice and water on demand.

Why a BOSCH Fridge Freezer?

BOSCH, a German manufacturer, has been providing the consumer products for years. We have come to know that the BOSCH name represents dependable and quality products. The craftsmanship and functionality are top and BOSCH strives to continually update their products accordingly to meet the constantly changing consumer needs and advancements in technology.

Having a BOSCH Fridge Freezer is knowing that your fresh and frozen foods will be properly cared for. In fact, the options BOSCH have available today are different than the standard fridge freezer units that other manufacturer’s offer. A BOSCH Fridge Freezer actually has a larger freezer area than other brands. For years the cooling space has been larger but today a larger freezer space is a bigger requirement.

The units BOSCH offers today is still as reliable and functional as before but now the appliance is working even harder for you. The features included are auto defrost and an energy rating efficiency of A+ while still giving you the best freezing abilities possible. What other features are offered?

Today, we need our foods to last longer and sometimes we need more ice. The BOSCH technology ensures zero build up of ice within the freezing area while keeping the frozen foods as fresh as possible when it’s time to consume it. Combining this technology with more freezing space is a benefit for any size family. There is even a super-freeze option in which one button will freeze new foods placed in the freezer immediately; this is an excellent energy saver feature.

The Choice is Yours

It won’t take long for you to realize that a BOSCH appliance that will cool and freeze your foods in a unit that can be built-in or free standing is the unit for you. They have a great look, are very functional and you can choose from either a flat hinge or a sliding design. The interior features include:

5 adjustable interior glass shelves
pull out fridge tray
vegetable/salad container
freezer drawers, transparent
electronic LED controls/buttons

You receive the highest level of energy efficiency, performance and quality available; look for the “Green Technology Inside” sticker which represents a commitment to protecting the environment. Going “Green” is so important today and BOSCH wants to ensure that they are doing whatever they can to do their part and help out.

If you demand quality and the latest in technology for your kitchen, check out the BOSCH Fridge Freezer appliances available today.

Central Heating Pros And Cons – Underfloor Heating

Put simply, underfloor heating provides warmth to a room by heating the floor and having that warmth travel up, rather than heating the air, which rises to the top of the room before falling as it cools. All under-floor heating systems work according to similar principles, in that they consist of a heating element surrounded by insulation to disperse the heat and keep it in the room.

Rooms where people are likely to feel the coldness of the floor through their feet, such as bathrooms or kitchens, are obvious candidates for under-floor heating. However, you can have underfloor heating installed in virtually any room, with any type of flooring, be it linoleum, carpet, stone or hardwood.

It is common for extensions and conservatories to be fitted with under-floor heating, as it is a lot easier and cheaper to install it while other building work is being done.

There are a number of good reasons to install underfloor heating, but it is not a technology that is entirely without its drawbacks, either. Here are a list of the pros and cons of underfloor heating:

Pros:

Tiled rooms, such as bathrooms and kitchens are a lot less of an ordeal to walk on in bare feet when they are warm underfoot

Wet underfloor heating systems are much more energy efficient than a traditional radiator system, as the heat is concentrated in the lower half of the room where all the people are

Cons:

Though cheaper to buy and install than wet systems, dry systems are a lot less energy efficient and could end up costing you more in the long run

If you are installing an underfloor heating system in an existing property, the floors will need to be taken up, which can make it prohibitively expensive

As with any other heating system, underfloor heating will not work very efficiently in homes that are poorly insulated, as much of the heat will simply escape into the atmosphere

Measuring Energy Efficiency In It Managed And Cloud Services

As environmental issues begin to take center attention in the minds of people and on the agendas of legislature, saving energy has become an important issue facing many companies. For any business that deploys a significant amount of information technology resources, including anything from office computers to servers and data storage, reducing energy consumption while increasing resource efficiency is easier with cloud services.

Cloud services are on-demand, network-available computing resources, programs, and managed services. Also known as virtualization, physical IT resources can be utilized on a subscription or per-use basis through remote hosting. For example, software can be used through a remote provider via a network connection rather than purchasing and installing a local copy or license of that program onto every computer. Data storage can be leased in the same way instead of purchasing and installing more servers.

Cloud services have been recognized as offering many companies flexible, low-cost technology solutions that can be scaled to meet changes in demand effortlessly, all without capital outlays and dedicated support personnel and overhead. Let us examine some specific examples of employing cloud services to both achieve energy efficiency and productivity.

Data Security and Reliability Through Remote Backup Services

The bread and butter of IT resources usually consist of data management and backup, whether it is customer accounts, order histories, or client records. Cloud services can be leveraged to streamline data storage through a single portal and a single location. Most companies end up adding storage capacity over time to accommodate growth, but that creates a lot of disparate data devices that all have to be maintained separately. Virtual data hosting simplifies the entire process.

Virtual data storage services provide a number of benefits for companies of any size. In regards to green IT, virtual data storage is performed on high-performance media that consume less energy and is dynamically scaled to meet demands without waste. Coordinated storage procedures through a single, remote source ensure reliable data backup procedures and easy disaster recovery. All of these features are purchased on an as-needed plan without in-house support departments and overhead.

Managed services for data reliability include procedures compatible with PCI/DDS, Sarbanes-Oxley, and HIPPA in a plug-and-play setup.

Efficient Document and Information Management through Email Archiving

Even companies that are not heavily dependent on data still generate and manage a large volume of emails and electronic documents. Email archiving is performed by nearly every employee in an office, quickly generating hundreds and thousands of data pieces, each managed in small quantities in a different manner by each worker. This quickly creates a situation where important emails are spread out between computer hard drives, backup disks, and network drives and are not easily accessible.

Secure email archiving works to consolidate all of this data and creates effective standards in order to improve accessibility and increase reliability. This data consolidation utilizes high efficiency storage devices to save on costs and energy usage. Email archiving routines will consolidate emails, remove duplicates, and compress data all through remote managed services and internet connections to data centers. Add in retention policies and automated backup sessions and the increased efficiencies translate into saved costs, time, and energy.

Expanding IT Resources with Virtual Infrastructure

In addition to data storage and management, nearly any IT device or infrastructure can be virtualized. Cloud services cover everything from operating system virtualization, such as applications and software, to hardware, like networks, servers, and data centers, to managed services, such as regulatory compliance, industry best practices, and security and reliability procedures.

The power of virtual infrastructure lies in its scalability. Instead of periodic capital outlays for upgrades and expansions, cloud services are matched to current and future needs with instant expansions and reductions in services to follow the business cycle and seasonal operations. This efficiency translates into cutting excess costs and consuming only the minimum amount of energy. In addition, remote managed services create a safety net through redundant systems and backups for quick disaster recovery with a minimal loss in business continuity.

Like a utility provider, customers only pay for what they use without ever having systems running idle. The reductions in power consumption can form the basis of green initiatives that enable companies to rethink mission statements and company values with environmental concerns in mind. Beyond corporate culture, green solutions also carry the potential for securing incentive programs from local and federal governments. In the end, green cloud and managed services allows business to run more efficiently.

Londons Dirtiest Buildings

An energy survey that carried out recently on several public buildings in and around London shows that Buckingham Palace is the least energy efficient of them all. The palace which was built in 1820 and was first ever occupied by Queen Victoria received the worst possible green score of 0 out of 10 when a team of energy surveyors carried out a survey of the palace following Januarys big freeze.

The surveyors was carried out by using thermal image testing to find out where the building was leaking energy. However, despite these tests being carried out in total darkness, the palace still lit up due to the amount of heat that was escaping from the building. The major culprits for this big loss of energy were the windows, the roof and even cracks in the wall. According to the surveying team, it appears that Buckingham Palace is better at heating the air outside than inside.

Furthermore, the latest Royal Household Financial Report that was carried out in 2008 showed that 5.9 million were spent on running Buckingham Palace, of which 2.2 million were spent on utility bills. However, according to the energy saving expert Ivan Lucas, the construction of Buckingham Palace does not lend itself to easily turning it into an eco-home.

However, there a few quick fixes that can be carried out in order to help Buckingham Palace save energy. These include replacing the single pane windows by brand new double glazing windows, because despite the thick curtains, a lot of

heat is still escaping the building.
Other repairs that can be carried to improve Buckingham Palaces energy efficiency include installing insulation panels to the outside as well as the inside of the property in order to minimize heat loss.

Carrying out these types of repairs will contribute to relieving the building industry that was very hardly hit by the recession. It would enable many companies to save jobs and train their staff in using energy saving materials.

According to energy saving experts, Buckingham Palace was not the only offender. Many other official or public buildings such as the MPs office building of Portcullis House in London and MI6 header quarters in Vauxhall were also part of the main offenders. Whats more, this happened despite the government recently launching a multimillion scheme that would lead to British households slashing their energy emissions by 50 percent by 2050.

In the light of the results of the surveys that were carried on many public buildings throughout, it transpires that the government is not setting a good example when it comes to reducing carbon emissions, and this despite multi-million schemes that aim at saving more energy.

Voltas Split Ac

In scorching summer heat, there is nothing more precious than a good and efficient air conditioner. Split air conditioners are more in demand than window ACs. Split ACs does not need any opening like windows to get installed. They can be installed anywhere on the walls. Their cooling unit is outer side of the building. Among the various leading brands, Voltas Split ACs is very much popular appliances. Voltas is an old and established company with proven records in the field of cooling devices. Voltas ACs is known for their power efficiency, flexibility and affordability.

You can choose from the wide range of ACs offered by Voltas according to your cooling needs. Area of the space or room is the most important factor while choosing an air conditioner.

Voltas 1.0 Vertis Gold 5 Star is the split air conditioners which are available at affordable prices. This machine is equipped with Silver ion filter which has the Nano Silver attached on the filter. It gives you the luxury to breathe in fresh air as it kills the bacteria present in the air. This AC is equipped with energy efficient Rotary compressor which reduces the consumption of the energy, increase cooling and helps quiet operation.

Voltas 1.5 Vertis Elite 3 Star is a sure winner among others in this category. This wall mounted AC is perfect for the cooling of a large room. You can shift it easily to any other location also. It is equipped with features like rotary compressor and auto swing. It also features digital temperature control. Its other features include air swing, auto restart and timer. It circulates air with 850 M3/Hr.

Voltas 1.5 Vertis plus 3 Star offers many benefits to its users. It comes with a LCD remote with intelligent functions. It is equipped with features like 5 step swing, sleep mode, fan speed change, on/off timer setting and automatic rotation of louvers. This AC features active carbon filter which absorbs the hydrocarbon gases, odors and vapors. Bureau of Energy Efficiency has given it 2-star level EER rating.

Voltas 1.0 Vertis Elite 3 Star offers the maximum pleasure you desire during the scorching heat. It has a 3 star rating and reduces the power consumption. The functionality of this air conditioner is increased by single rotary compressor with R-22 Refrigerant gas.

Voltas Split AC are the perfect companions for the home. You can relax even in blistering summer heat with these ACs on.

Luxaire Air Conditioners

Luxaire is a division of the Unitary Products Groups – A Johnson Controls Company. The company is a major supplier of heating, ventilating, air-conditioning and refrigeration units in the United States and a leading supplier on the international market. The quest of the company to find the top technology is evident in their line of energy efficient residential and light commercial heating and cooling systems. In addition, Luxaire offers you superior service and support. Efficient and reliable heating and cooling systems that are backed by award winning service is why many homeowners, dealers and distributors choose Luxaire systems.

A vital piece of the Luxaire cooling system is the air conditioning coil. The Luxaire system comes with two parts – an indoor and an outdoor unit. The indoor unit is the air handler or furnace, which is responsible for circulating air throughout the building. Inside the air handler or furnace there is a fan and an evaporator coil. Because of these two components being properly matched, you get a money saving efficient machine that gives you improved comfort and years of maintenance free service.

The air condition coil in Luxaire products are specifically engineered for outstanding durability and exceptional heat transfer. With Luxaire high quality coils you will get the comfort you need in either your home or business atmosphere. You get an indoor and outdoor unit that is perfectly matched for high efficiency. A positive-sloped drain pan reduces the issue of standing water that can lead to germs. A special patented MicroBlue coating on the air conditioning coil keeps germs and moisture from collecting on the coil and being released into the air. In a few air conditioning coils, you can get environmentally friendly and proven refrigerants. For optimum performance, there is an optional thermostatic expansion valve.

The 13 SEER: Climasure MicroChannel air conditioner will make a big difference in your energy bill. Sometimes it can reduce your energy bill by up to 50% compared to other central air conditioning units that are over 10 years old. When combined with a variable speed air handler or gas furnace, you will get efficiencies over 14 SEER, which can further reduce the operating cost of your air conditioning unit.

Lastly, Luxaire air conditioners are specifically engineered for reliability and outstanding performance. Luxaire air conditioners provide a high efficiency condensing units, which provides you with the comfort you need. For the highest efficiency, your furnace and coil are perfectly matched. You get an assured longer life with an advanced MicroChannel all aluminum construction. Luxaire air conditioning units are specifically designed to reach maximum performance in the minimum amount of space. All of the moving parts in a Luxaire air conditioning unit are specially selected and mounted in order to meet the lowest sound ratings. The fan motor on a Luxaire air conditioning unit is permanently lubricated so no maintenance is required.

With all these benefits, it is easy to see why many people are making Luxaire air conditioners the choice for all air conditioning needs. It is also clear why Luxaire has become an industry leader in the air conditioning industry.

Power Factor Optimization How To Save Up To 25% On Electric Bills

With soaring energy costs, and the very real possibility of even higher electric bills just around the corner, consumers everywhere are eager to find ways to save on their monthly electric bills. While many people are becoming more diligent about turning off lights, using less hot water, and keeping the thermonstat at a certain level, technology has come up with an innovative way to optimize the power factor in your home or business. This process, which is called power factor optimization, allows you to increase the effective use of your electricity. This process reduces your power consumption, which in turn lowers your electric bill.

The term power factor means the way in which energy efficiency is measured. More precisely, it refers to the percentage of electricity that is delivered to your home and used efficiently, versus what is being wasted through your inductive load. For example, a home with a power factor of 100% means that all of the electricity being delivered is being used in an efficient manner.

Studies show that most homes in America have an average power factor of 78%, and in some cases, the power factor is even lower. This means that if you have a power factor of 78%, the motors in your home from various appliances (ie, your inductive load) are wasting 22% of your electricity. How does one reduce the amount of power lost through the inductive load and achieve in ideally higher power factor? A power factor optimizer, such as the PS 1200, can be installed. This device will increase the effective use of your electricity and lower your usage of electricity. Also known as a power conditioner, the PS 1200 works by reducing the amount of the power drawn from the utility and capturing the lost electricity in the capacitators. This captured electricity is then sent back into the circuit.

Other benefits of installing a PS 1200 power factor optimizer include whole house surge protection, extended appliance life, reduced energy costs, reduced harmonic feedback, and electrical noise reduction. In addtiion, this device enables you to reduce your carbon footprint and it is environmentally safe.

The actual savings that the consumer experiences by installing a power saver unit is determined by many variable factors. The size of your home, the amount of your inductive load, and the amount that you are currently paying per kilowatt hour are all important factors. Most people see a savings of 10-25% on their actual monthly electric bills after installing the PS 1200. In reality, this unit can pay for itself within 12 months. With an average lifetime of 20 years, and a factory warranty of 5 years, your monetary return on investing in this piece of equipment is excellent. Business owners can also purchase commercial 3-phase power save industrial models (PS 3200 and PS 3400) and often times can write off the cost of the equipment and installation as a legitimate business expense.

The residential power saver unit works on any modern type of circuit panel (it does NOT work with old-fashioned screw-in fuses) and will work on any such single phase residential electric application. The two commercial and industrial models are 3-phase and they size motors up to 75 hp and up to 300 hp. All units, whether commercial or residential, are UL approved and should be installed by a licensed electrician.

Avoiding a Texas Electricity Crisis Doing Your Share

The recent Texas electricity emergencies are significant warnings to all residents that everyone should do their part in conserving electricity. Unless a really abundant source of cheap electricity is made available to everyone, people must not be complacent in their efforts in conserving power and using electricity wisely. Everyone should not be wasteful with their use of power and should do their part in practicing energy conservation and having an energy efficient home.

While the recent electricity emergency called forth by the Texas grid operator Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) was mostly attributed to the significantly high temperatures of high summer, rolling blackouts were avoided with the cooperation of both residential and commercial Texas electricity users.

At some points during the recent emergencies, ERCOT had no option but to initiate Energy Emergency Alert Level 2, calling on large commercial and industrialTexaselectricity users bounded by contract to voluntarily reduce their load.

At least, Energy Emergency Alert Level 3 or Power Emergency was averted, which forces power utilities to immediately conduct temporary outages on their areas of distribution in an attempt to reduce to the overall demand on the Texas electricity grid. With 20 power plants shutting down and more than 3,000 megawatts of capacity lost, it looked as ifTexas residents would have to deal with 15 to 45 minutes rolling power outages.

Despite Texasresidents having the power to select energy options, everyone has the responsibility of doing their share in preventing a Texas electricity crisis. It is not the sole responsibility of the power grid operator and the utility companies to handle everything there is to be done during these emergencies. Texas residents can do their share by practicing energy conservation measures right in their own homes.

The Texas Public Utility Commission released their “Powerful Advice” initiatives which describe practical energy conservation tips that every resident should follow. ERCOT advised reduction of energy usage between 3 m to 7pm, peak hours where Texas electricity usage is at its highest, and they can do so by simply turning off unnecessary lights and other electricity-consuming appliances.

However, the practice of energy conservation and having an energy efficient home should not be done only during calls for electricity emergencies, but should be an integrated part of modern life. Tips are available from your Retail Electric Providers or from your utility companies. Aside from that, there are lots of energy conservation tips shared through various websites including the blogs and articles from Shop Texas Electricity.

Energy efficiency should be a way of life and not just an emergency action when the situation calls for it. Energy efficiency and energy conservation will help ensure that residents will have ample supply of energy now and in the future. The government and its agencies, private corporations, the academic and technological communities are doing the best they can to come up with alternative solutions for energy production to ensure abundant supply not only for all people now, but for future generations to come.

About Shop Texas Electricity- Shop Texas Electricity helps consumers and businesses compare and shop for their electricity plans in Texas. Learn more about Shop Texas Electricity by visiting us at www.ShopTexasElectricity.com

Energy-efficiency Electronics Hardware A bridge Fuel To The Future

Demand for energy continues to be a major topic around the world. Renewable energy sources such as wind, solar or hydro power are increasingly being utilized to provide for that demand. Many States have even recently passed laws raising the minimum renewable usage cap that utility companies must implement into their overall supply. But … we still require escalating amounts of energy for agriculture, industry, and to heat our homes and offices. Emerging as a “bridge fuel” to clean energy and renewable resources, the power electronics industry is poised to span that gap with hardware solutions needed to build intelligent power systems.

The Obama administration plans to spend billions of dollars on power conservation and sustainable energy projects as part of a $787 billion stimulus package which is has focused on energy efficiency. Andrew Fanara, of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program has famously said. “Energy efficiency is the bridge fuel we must build on and must invest in” he stresses “Energy efficiency is the cheapest, cleanest, fastest way to act.”

In part, the administration’s strategy is to use improved energy efficiency as a method of buying time to invest in and explore emerging and clean energy options. With initiatives like the smart power grid gaining traction, the power electronics hardware that makes it all work and its new designs aimed at increasing energy efficiency will be at the core of the plan.

Already, there is huge demand for power efficiency by consumers found an industry survey. And, consumers are willingly paying a premium for electronic hardware that delivers energy efficiency. This trend anticipates a growing number of electronic hardware devices will be utilized, which lowers costs and drives improved energy efficiency. Measured in dollars per watt this high volume of hardware deployment forecasts the efficiency for power electronics may drop to as low as 12 cents per watt by 2013.

The focal point of “smart power” systems and a national smart energy grid has clearly been on the hardware side of the equation. To be successful, in the not to distant future, engineers will also make use of the intelligence provided by software so that the hardware components communicate most effectively to accomplish maximum reduction of power consumption. The know-how exists now for this integrated software, but it is still far from widespread.

Power Profiling is a valuable energy-efficiency tool that granularly identifies the power consumed specifically by HVAC, appliances, networks, lighting etc. and communicates this information to users. A user profile is developed by use of proprietary algorithms that calculate information regarding a structure’s overall usage, and several data points such as the time of day and its energy consumption history.

The purpose of power profiling is to enable users to know exactly what activities or systems are consuming the most power, including how much, and how that consumption is affected by actions they take. Most HVAC and appliances are not yet enabled so numerous hardware metering devices are used throughout the structure, at least an adequate number to demonstrate to the user what the largest power users are and how to limit consumption.

Home Area Networks (HAN) are increasingly communicating with utilities in addition to the traditional media centers and computers. Both utilities and consumer electronics companies are offering and assortment of hardware solutions with methods of pre-programming and remotely controlling home systems such as water usage, heating & cooling, and appliances. With the arrival of “smart” appliances and new wireless network protocols designed specifically for energy-efficiency, many of these hardware solutions communicate to users and utilities over one or more wireless systems.

ZWave for media and home automation

ZigBee chosen by utility companies because of it’s secure protocol, and

EnOcean a European self-powered energy harvesting technology that powers devices without the use of batteries.

Hardware using these wireless protocols can all be controlled from a single point building management system, or a homeowner’s computer. Even though these technologies are still on the leading edge, trends indicates they are very near to wide-scale adoption, enabling buildings to connect to smart grid applications that exponentially increase energy-efficiency.

Advances in alternative energy sources have provided greener ways of producing electricity and the burgeoning energy-efficiency industry is providing a plethora of energy saving hardware devices to help users re-tool . We can reduce energy consumption with these advances and make strides toward energy independence. Consider what T. Boone Pickens says “In additional to putting our security in the hands of potentially unfriendly and unstable foreign nations, we spent $475 billion on foreign oil in 2008 alone. That’s money taken out of our economy and sent to foreign nations, and it will continue to drain the life from our economy for as long as we fail to stop the bleeding.

Projected over the next 10 years the cost will be $10 trillion – it will be the greatest transfer of wealth in the history of mankind.”

“By investing in renewable energy and conservation, we can create millions of new jobs. Developing new alternative energies while utilizing natural gas for transportation and energy generation; securing our economy by reducing our dependence on foreign oil, and keeping more money at home to pay for the whole thing.”

Moving forward with renewables is a must, but it is also a documented fact that this increased capacity will not be enough to meet upcoming demands and provide energy independence. The tremendous strides being made in energy efficiency technologies are to help stem the tide, bridging the gap.