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Sustainability Team 1 - Proposal Draft

Page history last edited by Antonia Connolly 10 years, 6 months ago
  1. Turning Off the Lights! 

  2.  

  3. Introduction

 

Global Cash Access, a service provider for the gaming industry, has a Las Vegas office composed of two main building sections. Each section has one light switch that controls all the lights (fluorescent tubes) for the whole section. These lights are very rarely turned off, even though there are portions of the building unoccupied from 5 or 6 PM until roughly 7 to 9 AM on weekdays, and unoccupied through the entire weekend. Often one person working late (say, until midnight) will result in the lights for the whole side of the building being lit. There are only two areas with people working in them 24/7, and one of these (the help desk, where Richard works) already has separate light controls. The other area, the call center, is a fairly large area (occupying about 1/2 to 2/3 of that section of the building).

 

Turning off the lights for an entire side of the building is not really an option generally, because most of the time there will be at least one person who needs light. The real problem here seems to be the lack of separate light switches for small sections of the building. Of course, offices have their own light switches, but the number of people in cubicles under general lighting is much greater than the number of offices.

 

If turning off the lights is not a viable option, perhaps setting the lights on a timer is. This solution saves electricity during non-standard hours of operation while keeping the option to use the light switch open. However, it does not take into account the handful of people that work during these operational anomalies that will manually adjust the lighting. Even if the lights are on timers, people are still utilizing the inefficient source of overhead lighting during these times. In addition, the light switches are currently by the exit doors; putting timers in would mean that if a timer were to go off, workers in the affected area would have to interrupt their work, get up and go to the timer, and turn them back on. Workers are likely to view this as a nuisance and may just set the timer for much longer than they actually need.

 

Alternatively, motion sensor lighting provides flexibility that timed lighting does not. Since certain areas remain unoccupied during times of the night the motion senors will not be triggered therefore providing energy and cost savings while meeting the necessary lighting requirements for those left in the building. However, the feasibility of this option would be very limited by the structure of the cubicles (6 foot wall height); there would have to be a motion sensor for each cubicle or at the most for 4 to 6 cubicles, which would be relatively expensive to wire.

 

Infrastructure changes to the building's lighting can be time consuming and possibly cost prohibitive. There is also a potential loss of productivity during the construction phase. The feasibility of efficient and cost effective energy-efficient individual or group lighting solutions may prove a viable option. the benefits are that it is quick and still saves energy. Options such as desk lamps or floor lamps to replace overhead lighting during off hours could quickly and easily change the company's energy consumption. However, this is likely to be an expensive option to implement, as the price for separate additional lights for each cubicle would quickly add up. Also, the relative efficiency often cited for CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lamp) bulbs is in comparison to incandescent bulbs. The fluorescent tubes already in place are among the most efficient lighting sources currently available for commercial use.


Introducing the Team

Sustainability Project: Red Team One

 

            Team Member 

Background 

            Richard Wood 

Richard has the unique advantage of being an employee of Global Cash Access (GCA). Having worked there for nearly 10 years, he is familiar with the general business climate and has access to the personnel who can approve our proposal. 

           Jennifer Smith  

A former sales executive with over 14 years experience in prospecting, research, and presentations. Jennifer has also worked on several group projects and managed budgets up to $1,000,000. 

           Antonia Connolly 

Antonia Connolly is an Information Developer with a Point of Sale Software company in Las Vegas. Working in a similar 24/7 work environment, working collaboratively on a daily basis to create and maintain both internal and external documentation helps provide a certain familiarity with the subject matter. 

           Jeffrey Hajibandeh 

Jeffrey is a licensed Engineering Intern (EIT) and Civil Engineer with experience in green building design. He has worked on several development projects to optimize site plans and maximize the efficiency of design.  Additionally, he has created several proposals and post-construction reports, making him a capable member of a Sustainability Team. 

 

 

 

Existing Site Layout

 

North Office Building 

 

South Office Layout

 

Recommendations

[Text]

 

Alternative Light Sources: Understanding How They Work

 

Timed Automatic Switches

 

If turning off the lights is not a viable option, perhaps setting the lights on a timer is. This solution saves electricity during non-standard hours of operation while keeping the option to use the light switch open.

Automatic Timed Lighting only uses electrical energy during set timed sequences which turn lighting on and off at alternating times during a 24 period. Pricing is set at $18.00-$48.00. 

 

Motion Detectors

 

Alternatively, motion sensor lighting provides flexibility that timed lighting does not. Since certain areas remain unoccupied during times of the night the motion sensors will not be triggered therefore providing energy and cost savings while meeting the necessary lighting requirements for those left in the building.

Motion Detectors only use electrical energy when triggered by movement inside a space. In addition, motion detectors permit users to manually adjust lighting. The sensor also permits users to determine the length of duration that the lights remain on. These durations are usually set at 10, 20, or 30 minutes. The motion sensors cover an area of 180 degrees, which is 2,100 square foot coverage. Pricing is set at $118.99 per unit. 

 

Energy Efficient Bulbs

 

Infrastructure changes to the building's lighting is often time consuming and possibly cost prohibitive. There is also a potential loss of productivity during the construction phase. The feasibility of efficient and cost effective energy efficient individual or group lighting solutions may prove a viable option. The benefits are that it is quick and still saves energy. Options such as desk lamps or floor lamps to replace overhead lighting during off hours could quickly and easily change the company's energy consumption.

An ENERGY STAR qualified compact fluorescent light bulb (CFL) will save about $30 over its lifetime and pay for itself in about 6 months. It uses 75 percent less energy and lasts about 10 times longer than an incandescent bulb (EnergyStar.gov, 2010, para. 2). This needs to be replaced with data about CFL vs. T8 fluorescent tubes, data about CFL vs. incandescent is irrelevant to this project as there are no incandescent bulbs currently in use. There is some good info about T8 bulbs at http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/NLPIP/publicationdetails.asp?id=128&type=2 (which is linked from the sidebar on http://www.energysavers.gov/your_home/lighting_daylighting/index.cfm/mytopic=12070).

 

This section is irrelevant as T8 is what is suggesteb by energysavers.gov as an energy efficient bulb - it is the CFL they suggest. http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=sb_guidebook.sb_guidebook_lighting 

 

Indentifying Project Obstacles

 

The team proposal is based on the business environment of team member Richard Wood. As such, Richard is responsible for conducting the majority of the preliminary research leaving the secondary research, analyzing, and processing of the information to the remaining team members.

 

Reporting the Findings

Based on the findings...

 

Timed Automatic Switches

 

Using timed automatic switches does not take into account the handful of people that work during operational downtimes which means manually adjusting the lighting. In addition, the light switches are located by exit doors. If the times that the timers go off employees in the affected area would have to manually turn the lights back on. GCA employees are likely to view this as a nuisance and set the timer for much longer than they actually need. Also, this option can only be implemented after the lights are separated into separate circuits, since adding a timer to the current setup would still only turn all the lights on or all the lights off.

 

Motion Detectors

 

The feasibility of this option would be very limited by the structure of the cubicles (6 foot wall height). The pricing for the installation of motion sensors for each cubicle or small groups of cubicles in addition to the price of wiring makes this option relatively expensive. This would also requires separation of light circuits, though it might be feasible to rewire only locally (i.e. from specific lights to specific motion sensors).

 

Task Lighting

 

The main advantage to this would be that less lumens are required for task lighting; i.e. one person working in a cube would only need a small amount of light overall, as opposed to having an entire zone lit up. However, the energy efficiency of individual bulbs, even CFL bulbs, is less than that of the T8 fluorescent overhead bulbs currently in use. Calculating the exact efficiencies of this method would be difficult due to the combination of factors. The option itself is also likely to be expensive to implement, as the price for separate additional lights for each cubicle would quickly add up. 

 

Schedule

 

Since the building has restricted access, we have to rely on Richard to do most of the research and collecting pertinent data. This will be completed during or by the end of Spring Break. The rest of the team will then work collaboratively to process and interpret the data and then to present it. Please see our chart link below.

 

Preliminary Gannt Chart

 

Shedding Light on a Solution

 

Though there are several logistical obstacles to overcome, we believe the solutions suggested in this proposal generally outweigh these problems. Local rewiring combined with motion sensors provide a viable alternative to constant power usage. These solutions are based on the collaborative innovation of our team, and we submit this proposal for consideration and an offer to answer any questions the reader may have. We appreciate the opportunity to devise sustainable solutions for GCA. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact any member of Team 1. 

 

 





Comments (34)

Jennifer Smith said

at 10:53 am on Mar 20, 2010

Richard - need your input on the schedule and please post your qualifications as well. I will work on the conclusion later tonight. Got called in to work early yesterday and need to head back right now. Won't be off until 8pm. thanks guys! and everyone - feel free to edit what I have put down. I have no ego on this kind of stuff...just make sure it rocks! =)

wikiuser0010 said

at 1:10 pm on Mar 20, 2010

Hey all, i added some edits last night. Please feel free to revise what i added (especially the section where we describe each member of the team - i feel like i sounded cheesey). Like Jennfier said, no ego here either!

Richard Wood said

at 4:26 pm on Mar 20, 2010

I'll post my info later tonight. Meanwhile, I mentioned some of this over on webcampus, but:
1) GCA does in fact own the building.
2) There is a company (upper management, really) aesthetic that will not allow table/floor lamps.
3) Changing the lighting type from fluorescent would be pretty expensive and would probably take way too long to pay off.
4) A series of motion detectors that control different zones would also be more expensive, and would involve considerably more research. Also, someone working in one area without moving much doesn't set off motion detectors unless there's a motion detector for every cube, which would definitely be prohibitively expensive.
5) Timers or automatic programming are a bit more realistic, but since people's schedules can vary fairly widely from day to day or week to week, I'm pretty sure the company would rather have regular switches. Also, the switches are currently by the exits, so everyone goes by them to get out of the building, but getting up to turn the light back on after a timer expired can be a bit of a walk.

Richard Wood said

at 8:07 pm on Mar 20, 2010

The fonts and stuff were completely wikified, so I edited the source directly and cleaned all that up. In addition, I removed the part about ownership of the building (since it is a non-issue) and mentioned some of the disadvantages of the timer/motion detector models. I also put a link to the preliminary gantt chart I posted earlier, feel free to edit (since I kinda made up the dates). Just make sure not to give me all the primary research within a 1-week period or anything crazy like that, LOL.

Jennifer Smith said

at 7:42 pm on Mar 21, 2010

Okay, I'm working on it now...I will finalize and save as a .doc as well. I will also submit via WebCampus tonight. FYI - I'm on campus all day Tuesdays and Thursdays. I work Friday-Monday. I'm online T-Th frequently, the rest of the time, infrequently.

Jennifer Smith said

at 8:13 pm on Mar 21, 2010

Disregard the .doc comment. I thought we had to submit tonight for a peer review, but it's for an optional instructor review. So, we can all continue to work on it. I will send Dr. S an email now letting her know that we would like to submit for her review and send her a link. I will also copy all team members.

Richard Wood said

at 8:26 pm on Mar 21, 2010

Sounds good!

wikiuser0010 said

at 8:37 pm on Mar 21, 2010

excellent. you all are have done so much and i feel like i've done so little!!! i am revising the current material and adding what i can (based on the info we have and what is prudent).

jeff h

wikiuser0003 said

at 8:51 pm on Mar 21, 2010

Sounds great. I can take a look at the Gant Chart if we're still interested.

Richard Wood said

at 9:05 pm on Mar 21, 2010

Seriously you two, get a name!

Like I said, I pretty much did that Gantt chart with made-up data because Jenn was having troubles with formatting it. Certainly, feel free to improve it. Also, once it's more-or-less final, we can do a screenshot, upload the file, and make it an inline image in the web page instead of a separate download.

Jeffrey said

at 12:31 pm on Mar 22, 2010

test.

Jeffrey said

at 12:32 pm on Mar 22, 2010

FInally!!! i got my account to cooperate.

Antonia Connolly said

at 2:02 pm on Mar 22, 2010

Relax... my request was approved by the administrator this morning :)P

julie.staggers@unlv.edu said

at 4:31 pm on Mar 24, 2010

You are generally in good shape here. I think you might be conflating "primary and secondary research" and "primary and secondary research questions." One thing that's missing here is an explicit discussion of your research questions. You could use a subheading somewhere in your methodology section for "Research Questions." Your primary research question is the main question that you're trying to answer, which is something like "What's the most effective way for Global Access to reduce energy costs and reduce electricity consumption associated with lighitng in the office areas." Your secondary research questions are then all of the questions you need to answer in order to answer that main question: How much does lighting cost now? What are the alternatives? How have other companies resolved this problem? What's the cost/benefit of each alternative? etc.

You already have a whole slew of secondary questions peppered throughout, so you already have most of what you need. In the area where you have primary and secondary research bulleted out right now, you'll want to attach those research questions to a specific type of research. You have a lot of things that fall into the category of Site Visit/Observation, you might also have Surveys, or Interviews. Primary research is any research where you generate the original data, so Site Visits, Interviews, Surveys, etc, are all primary research. Secondary research is library or internet research you do to ferret out existing information (how have other companies handled similar problems? what's the price per kilowatt? etc.)

julie.staggers@unlv.edu said

at 4:31 pm on Mar 24, 2010

You have a good Gantt chart started and that provides a tracking system for your overall project, to parcel out research assignments, you might find it helpful to convert that info to a table that identifies
Question to be answered Type of Research P/S Means of answering (Site visit, library, etc) Source of Information (Dave in accounting, Lighting News TodayUNLV database) Person assigned (I'll try to add a tabular example up above...)


You're in generally good shape. Remember that in your obstacles section you can address both some of the logistical issues you'll have with research but also any logistical/time management/work load issues the team might have (i.e. Jennifer can only work while standing on her head in a Superman cape; Jeffrey is available from 1 a.m. to 1:15 on Wednesdays and Sundays; etc.)

Jeffrey said

at 3:11 pm on Mar 25, 2010

So how should we proceed from here all?

Jeffrey said

at 3:51 pm on Mar 25, 2010

Ok, so i made changes to the "Research" section of the proposal draft. I formatted the questions in the same manner that Dr. S presented that example.

I started filling in some of the tasks that i thought i would be capable of doing, but it seems that a disproportionate amount of the research is going to have to be done by Richard unless we can devise some other way to execute this. Any thoughts?

Please make changes as you see fit!! :)

(Btw, for some reason when i log in under "Jeffrey" it doesn't allow me to edit, so i have to switch to my "wikiuser0010" account to actually make changes ---> super lame).

Richard Wood said

at 1:17 am on Mar 26, 2010

Hmm Jeffrey, how do you plan on finding out via the internet what the wattage of the bulbs here is? I was kinda planning on taking a look at one to find that out.

Jeffrey said

at 1:46 pm on Mar 26, 2010

Richard, I was just under the assumption that the fluorescent bulbs in your office would be standard loads (40 watts). I certainly could be wrong though... :)

wikiuser0008 said

at 10:16 am on Mar 27, 2010

Great Proposal. I do not see any problem s with it.

Richard Wood said

at 4:46 pm on Mar 27, 2010

Jeffrey, when we know the load all we need to do to find out how much electricity they use is math. But I think it's a good idea to check to make sure they are 40 watts (or whatever), because if it turns out they're different that would be a huge basic error that would ruin all our calculations.

Jeffrey said

at 10:41 pm on Mar 27, 2010

Okay all, how do we pursue Red Team Review for another group? Shall we just go ahead and review team 2? How will we partition it up?

Richard Wood said

at 8:53 pm on Mar 28, 2010

I dunno, I'm a little lost right now on what's due when (between scheduling changes via email and whatever). Any recommendations?

Antonia Connolly said

at 2:06 pm on Mar 29, 2010

Since we’re all working on different timeframes why don't we all review the document separately, and I can compile the information into one document? It would probably only require a few sentences in each section. Any thoughts?

Richard Wood said

at 6:56 pm on Mar 29, 2010

I posted my thoughts on our discussion board on webcampus (appended to Jeffrey's post).

Jeffrey said

at 8:26 pm on Apr 16, 2010

wow, you guys did so much in 3 days!

Jennifer Smith said

at 1:02 pm on Apr 18, 2010

Question: what are all of our recommendations? Would it be to install motion detectors, additional light switches, restructuring the work areas, aslternative work weeks? Remember, it's not about what we think will be well received, it's about what the research has presented us. Thanks guys!

Jeffrey said

at 1:18 pm on Apr 18, 2010

My understanding is that a combination of (1) rewiring to divide the lighting sections into more areas (additional zones) (2) additional switches, and (3) motion detectors would serve our proposal well.

Richard Wood said

at 2:32 pm on Apr 18, 2010

I posted a couple of changes. If we're going to talk about the energy efficiency of CFLs, we need to talk about them as compared to T8 fluorescent bulbs (the type in use) not vs. incandescent. I've posted some links there if someone wants to do the research (if not, I can do it; I just know some group members were concerned about having enough of their own work on this project since I had to be the only one to do the primary onsite research).

Jennifer Smith said

at 9:33 pm on Apr 18, 2010

Unless I'm completely lost, T8 bulbs are what are recommended by energysavers.gov as an energy efficient CFL. Incandescent is not suggested at all, T12 and T8's are according to that website. As a result, if the company is utilizing the most efficient CFL suggested, I don't see the point of addressing that - except maybe to advise them of such and/or show them that they are taking steps and encourage them to take it a step further.

Jennifer Smith said

at 1:07 am on Apr 19, 2010

I will be tackling this tomorrow as well as making comments to the review the other team submitted via webcampus. Also, I will submit this page to them right now via webcampus for their review. I will also copy into a .doc for them for their input.

Richard Wood said

at 11:42 am on Apr 19, 2010

T8 are regular fluorescent, not compact fluorescent. CFLs are the type you can screw into a regular socket; the ones starting with "T" and then a number are Tubes (and the number indicates how many eighths of an inch in diameter they are, so T8 is a one-inch wide tube). The reason I think we should talk about it vs. CFL is because any analysis of task lighting has to include the efficiency of the bulbs used; CFLs are inherently less efficient than regular fluorescents, but the question is "by how much?" We have to consider that because task lighting involves using fewer bulbs (i.e. if one person is there in a department, there need be only one task light lit, vs. a whole zone of overheads). Task lighting does answer the question of getting EACH PERSON their own switch; but it brings up other issues (additional cost of replacement bulbs, the initial cost of a large number of independent lamps, plus the difficulty in figuring out the fewer bulbs in use vs. less efficient bulbs in use debate).

julie.staggers@unlv.edu said

at 5:48 pm on Apr 20, 2010

This looks like your research proposal that I didn't have a score for. I'll get your grades for that posted ASAP; you should be in A-range there. The real challenge here is going to be in your background section where you identify the problem. As-is you're assuming that what makes "lighting an entire airplane hangar so four people can work graveyard in various locations inside the airplane hangar" a problem is self-evident. And while it may be self-evident, you must still in this sort of a report clearly define the problem: What is the problem? Why is it a problem? WHo is it a problem for? My best guess would be that it's a problem for the company, because they are wasting x-dollars a day lighting space for hundreds when they only need light for a few people. So, that's one possible version of the problem. Another version and probably less compelling unless your company is as earth-friendly as Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream used to be is that wasting electricity is bad for everyone, especially bad for Las Vegans because we live in a desert and have scarce resources and high temps and super-freakin' high airconditioning bills and wasting electricity hurts our pocket books and impedes our long-term ability to live in the desert, etc. So, you have possibly an economic problem, possibly a sustainability problem, possibly both. For the recommendation report, you can follow quite specifically the assignment sheet, but don't forget that chapter 19 in the textbook is also pretty much a step-by-step guide to pulling together a recomendation report. As long as you follow one model (assignment sheet) or the other (textbook) you should be in good shape. Remember that you should tie your solutions back to your stated problem. If the problem is financial, then you need lots of details about costs. If the problem is environmental sustainability, then you'll want lots of details about costs/benefits of various options in terms of reducing needless use of a resource.

julie.staggers@unlv.edu said

at 6:01 pm on Apr 20, 2010

Remember that for the recommendation report, those parts of the Research Proposal or Progress Report that address work that is to be done or timelines/schedules for doing work or responsbilities for doing the work all go away. Your client only needs to know: what's the problem?(background/statement of problem)/ what are your recommendations for fixing the problem? (recommendations)/ how did you arrive at that conclusion?(methodology)/ what are the details that support your recommendation (findings). You should integrate your research sources into your recommendations where relevant. Discuss your research findings in more detail in the findings section, but again, only include research directly relevant to your recommendations. Recommendations should address the strengths and weaknesses of various options considered and clearly identify the criteria you used for selecting solutions to the problem. (i.e. To be considered an effective solution to this problem, the solution could not cost more than $12, must incorporate the labor of magical sprites, and could not in any way involve the color red.) If you have exhibits or miscellaneous information that you think some of your readers would like to see (for example architectural plans) that don't fit easily into your standard page size, include them as Appendix items. Anything included the appendix should be referenced and discussed in the body of the report.

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