GreenTech Podcast: This Data on How Consumers Use Energy May Surprise You

GreenTech Media August 7, 2014 ,,

In this week’s podcast, we’ll talk with Brewster McCracken, the CEO of Pecan Street Inc., about the organization’s analysis of consumer energy use, utility efficiency programs and electric vehicle charging. Read More »

Smart Grid Project Saves Money and Energy in Texas July 3, 2014

Using smart grid technologies, the project provides 1,000 residences, 25 small commercial properties and three public schools energy data in real-time. Customers can now set and track utility bill budgets, use software to manage the electricity use of individual appliances, and even sell energy back to the grid when they are using less than they produce. By integrating smart meters, solar panels, electric vehicles and energy storage capabilities, the project is already seeing the benefits of smart grid integration and providing customers with control over their electric usage. Read More »

Time Magazine: Is this America’s smartest city?

Time Magazine • June 26, 2014

The Pecan Street devices are even smarter than smart meters, recording data from different appliances essentially in real time. At any given moment, the Pecan Street engineers–who work in partnership with the University of Texas and local utility Austin Energy–know exactly how much electricity their subjects are using and how that use changes in response to the time of day, weather patterns, even fluctuations in power price. “It’s by far the most aggressive [data-collection] project that I know of,” said Ernest Moniz, U.S. Energy Secretary, during a visit to Pecan Street in February. Read More »

Crumbling U.S. Grid Gets Jolt

Bloomberg News June 25, 2014

Some consumers are raving about the benefits of the smart grid, too. For Austin, Texas, resident Luke Downs, a participant in the Pecan Street project, access to the smart grid has changed his energy life. “Suddenly, I could see what I was doing,” he said. Downs, 44, lives in a 3-bedroom row house in what’s known as the Mueller neighborhood, a planned urban redevelopment on the grounds of Austin’s former municipal airport. Read More »

Researchers win fellowship awards at WikiEnergy Data Conference

June 9, 2014

Three researchers received energy research fellowship awards from Pecan Street Inc. at last week’s International WikiEnergy Data Conference at the University of Texas. All entries were reviewed by a panel of Pecan Street’s research advisory board, and researchers used Pecan Street’s unique energy dataset to address critical industry questions. The winners were: First place ($10,000): […] Read More »

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AC accounts for 2/3 of home summer electric use; over 80% of discretionary electric use in Texas research trial

May 7, 2014 ,,,,

Homeowners and utilities in areas with hot summers already knew air conditioning was the dominant electric use between June and August. The latest quarterly research report from the research site WikiEnergy puts a number on just how much of that home electric use comes from air conditioning. Read More » Provides University and NGO Researchers Access to the World’s Largest Energy and Water Use Database

March 6, 2014 ,,

A consortium of university and NGO researchers announced today the launch of WikiEnergy, a suite of online research tools that includes the world’s largest research database of customer energy and water use. WikiEnergy ( is available for free to university and NGO researchers conducting scientific and public interest research and curriculum development. Read More »

Report: Residential Solar Systems Reduce Summer Peak Demand by Over 50% in Texas research trial

November 18, 2013 ,,

In most markets, rooftop solar panels are promoted as a way for electric utility customers to reduce their reliance on fossil fuel power and — eventually — save money on their electric bill. According to a new PSR Analytics report from Texas-based energy research firm Pecan Street Research Institute, residential solar systems, and particularly west-facing rooftop systems, may also act as a fairly impactful peak demand reduction device for utilities struggling to meet afternoon demand in hot summer months. Read More »

Report: Impact of Electric Vehicle Charging on Electric Grid Operations Could Be More Benign than Feared

October 24, 2013 ,,,,,,

Electric vehicle (EV) owners are charging their cars much less during hot summer afternoons than most behavioral models predict. That is one of the findings from a new PSR Analytics report that measured Summer 2013 vehicle charging in the nation’s highest residential concentration of electric cars. The analysis found that charging behavior is much more diverse than has been predicted, represents a much more manageable energy load and may be highly elastic to time-of-use pricing and similar tools. Read More »

SDG&E Research Study To Dig Down To Circuit-Level Usage

PR Newswire August 21, 2013 ,,,

Pecan Street will provide volunteer participants with a free website and mobile application that provides real-time information on the customer's electricity use down to the appliance and circuit level as well as information on appliance, rooftop solar panel and home energy performance. The service is powered by an "energy data router" installed at the customer's circuit panel. The router is manufactured in California. Read More »

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