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Millennial Net is a sponsor of the MIT Undergraduate Research Opportunities Project (UROP) program that will support students to conduct energy research in a faculty member's lab. Research studies can range from buildings and urban design to industrial processes to global climate change.
Dr. Sokwoo Rhee, Millennial Net's co-founder and chief technology officer, observed, "This is a key role for us in industry in order to bring the best creative minds of academia together with industry professionals to focus on current energy problems. We see the need to move ahead with practical applications of technology we have been creating during the past few years - like Wireless Mesh Networking - for the vital work to be done in energy generation, conservation and developing the smart grid."
Melanie A. Kenderdine, associate director for Strategic Planning of MITEI, observed, "We at MITEI are pleased to welcome Millennial Net as an affiliate member and look forward to a long and mutually beneficial relationship. Our members provide valuable support and insights by teaming up with the creative researchers and MIT Energy Fellows."
According to U.S. Department of Energy statistics(1), buildings consume 40% of all energy and 73% of electricity consumption in the US; 80% of building electricity usage is for core infrastructure such as lighting, HVAC and refrigeration. Reducing this is vitally important. Research leads to innovations and practical solutions. For example, today it is possible to retrofit existing buildings with sensor and control devices that tune a building's operations, using technology such as wireless mesh sensor networks, which emerged from research at MIT and other universities.
The importance of energy research as a major initiative for the US was underscored by Dr. Steven Chu, Secretary of the US Department of Energy and the co-winner of the 1997 Nobel Prize for Physics, when he delivered the prestigious Compton Lecture at MIT on May 12, 2009. His presentation was entitled "The Energy Problem and The Interplay Between Basic and Applied Research"(2). Citing the strategic need for research on several fronts, he described the application of technology to building retrofits as truly low-hanging fruit.
Mark O'Hearne, Millennial Net vice president of business development and marketing, commented, "We are answering Dr. Chu's call for applying technology to improve the efficiency of existing buildings. In the emerging age of going green and smart energy consumption, commercial and industrial businesses are seeking ways to eliminate energy waste and become more responsive to a dynamic energy market. Wireless mesh sensor networks are recognized as an enabling technology for enhancing building energy conservation and initiatives like the smart grid."
Reducing energy waste cuts carbon emissions. Millennial Net provides energy management solutions that monitor and control energy consumption to improve efficiency and reduce waste in buildings. It combines Internet and wireless mesh sensor network technologies for a non-invasive and affordable means to retrofit existing buildings. The key is to help companies align energy consumption and costs with business priorities. Companies need to better understand how energy consumption relates to their business, to drive operational changes and for more effective investments to upgrade buildings and equipment.