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Sensors to Conserve Energy in DMACC Campus

Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) has been conserving energy in their facilities for more than 30 years and is recently engaged in widening their operations to lower the energy consumption throughout their entire campuses.

DMACC has been offered a State Energy Program award worth $44,000 by the Iowa Office of Energy Independence through the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). The entire scheme will cost $132,000 when coupled with other funds worth $88,000.

DMACC will be incorporating effective power occupancy sensors in their offices, classrooms and other infrastructures through out their eight campuses in Newton, Boone, Ankeny, Ames, Des Moines, Carroll, West Des Moines and Perry, for saving energy worth $74,000 yearly. Based on this scheme they have established three new full-time positions.

Mark Baethke, physical plant director at DMACC, stated that they have been saving energy using the sensors for more than 20 years and due to the inefficiency of the technology at times, the use of sensors for reducing the power consumption was restricted. He added that since the technology has been advanced recently and is economically beneficial, DMACC plans to install sensing technologies in their facilities with the aid of funds allotted for the purpose.

The ultrasonic as well as infrared sensors installed in the campus are capable of monitoring the body temperature and sound. The sensors will also regulate the cooling and heating systems in the classrooms when they are non-functional, in order to conserve energy.

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