Greener Information and Communication Technologies

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There are two ways of increasing energy efficiency using Information and Communication Technologies (ICT): 

  1. Increasing energy efficiency of ICT itself - 10% is possible by 2020 
  2. Using ICT as a key enabler for increasing energy efficiency in other industrial sectors. Examples are:
    • Controlled lighting
    • Improved logistics in Transport
    • Saving on travel - virtual meetings
    • ICT in buildings - temperature control
    • Smart metering - two way information flow (meter -> energy provider and meter -> consumer) and demand-side management
    • ICT controlled all electric cars
    • Manage data (including databases of knowledge), measure and report progress

 

About one fifth of the world’s electricity consumption is for lighting, presenting a major potential for savings. The adoption of high efficiency light-emitting diode (LED) technology, already available on the market, could save 30% of today’s consumption by 2015 and up to 50% by 2025. By adding sensing and actuation capabilities to energy-efficient bulbs, so that they automatically adjust to the environment (e.g. to natural light, people’s presence) — intelligent lighting – further improvements are possible.

Organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) constitute a promising technology under development. OLEDs have the advantage of possessing a uniformly diffuse emitting surface, while remaining very energy-efficient and environmentally safe. Furthermore, OLEDs are form-free and could be made on flexible materials, opening up a wide range of new possibilities.

 

Useful links

ICT increases energy efficiency in Manufacturing - Recommendations for R&D needs - the EC Consultation Group “Smart Manufacturing” (PDF, 1.6 MB)


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