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UNLV Demonstration Project (RDSI) - Dramatic Residential Demand Reduc tion in the Desert Southwest
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Lead Organization:
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
HQ Location:
Las Vegas, Nevada
Project Contact Information:
 Thomas George, Robert Boehm
 Tom.George@netl.doe.gov, boehm@me.unlv.edu

Thomas George
Project Manager
National Energy Technology Laboratory
3610 Collins Ferry Road
Morgantown, WV 26507-0880

Robert Boehm
UNLV Center for Energy Research
4505 S. Maryland Parkway
Las Vegas, NV 89154-4027

Project Summary:

The UNLV project started in 2008 and was unique among RDSI projects because of its highly aggressive goal for reduction in peak electricity demand. The 65% reduction goal at the feeder/substation level was more than four times higher than the minimum goal set by DOE for these projects [1]. This project was expected to demonstrate dramatic peak demand reduction in residential new construction through distributed generation, distributed energy storage, energy efficiency, direct load control and price-responsive load control. In cooperation with a nationally recognized home builder, a green field development of 185 homes had been built in which each home was designed for optimal energy efficiency and electrically metered with the most advanced technology available. Efficiency improvement over conventionally designed homes has exceeded 45% and the goal of 65% efficiency is expected when storage batteries are adopted by home owners. The multi-faceted approach to effective and efficient electricity use included solar photovoltaic systems, direct and price-responsive load control and peak load reduction strategies. Most importantly, UNLV had been directing this development along with the local utility with cutting edge metering and communication technologies to assess the cooperative behavior of residences in the goal of electricity conservation. An “Intelligent Agent” software system had been developed to integrate Internet and communications with home owners that weaves customer preferences into the energy savings strategy in a way to that is intended to excite and engage residential customers in the demand management process.

Project partners [2]:
- Pulte Homes Las Vegas Division
- NV Energy Nevada Power Division

Energy Efficient Construction [3]:
- Roof-integrated solar power system that blends seamlessly with roofing materials
- Energy Efficient lighting and appliances; LEED Residential Certification pending
- Certified by Environments For Living – a turnkey program that helps builders construct durable and efficient homes with improved ventilation, thermal systems, HVAC equipment, air pressure balancing, and water conservation measures

- 65% decrease in peak demand on electric feeder into low energy housing development compared to code-built houses
- Optimized grid management of distributed assets
- Development of intelligent agents within consumer gateway connected to advanced meter infrastructure

Key Milestones:
- All homes constructed/monitored (Fall 2013)
- Intelligent Agent System Operational (Summer 2013)
- Storage Battery Installations (pending utility performance acceptance and home-owner acceptance)

Additional Information:

1. R. Boehm, 2012 Smart Grid Peer Review Program. URL: http://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/27_Dramatic_Residential_Demand_Reduct...


[1] EPRI, "UNLV RDSI Demonstration Project - Dramatic Residential Demand Reduction in the Desert Southwest". URL: http://www.smartgrid.epri.com/doc/UNLV%20RDSI%20Final.pdf
[2] Steve Bossart, "Renewable and Distributed Systems Integration Demonstration Projects", EPRI Smart Grid Demonstration Advisory Meeting, October 12-14, 2009. URL: http://www.smartgrid.epri.com/doc/15%20DOE%20RDSI%20Project%20Update.pdf
[3] Energy Efficient Nevada Community Sets New Standard for Sustainable Development, UNLV Newscenter. URL: http://news.unlv.edu/release/energy-efficient-nevada-community-sets-new-...

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