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‘Green’ university opts for energy sub-metering system

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Escot, a clip-on sub-metering system by Marshall-Tufflex Energy Management, is monitoring the energy consumption of Manchester Metropolitan University’s (MMU) Crewe campus in a drive to better inform the facility and its students about energy usage and enable it to further reduce its carbon footprint.


MMU is championing environmental measures through a raft of initiatives involving heating, lighting, energy and waste. It aims to cut its 2005 level of carbon usage by 35% by 2016. Already on track, it reduced its carbon output by 4.9% between 2009/2010, earning it the government-backed Carbon Trust Standard and gaining it a Top 20 ranking in the greenest UK University league by student environmental campaign group, the People & Planet Green League.

As part of this initiative the university has installed 40 Escot clip-on sub-metering units within three halls of residence at its Crewe campus. Escot provides an in-depth view of overall consumption as well as localised usage and provides an alternative to installing many meters with different circuits for heating, lighting and power. The university hopes to make the energy usage information available to students to engage them in saving energy.

Compared to traditional sub-metering systems, Escot not only reduces installation work but also provides more information. The automatic energy data capture units utilise clip-on transducers that transmit a low voltage signal of equal proportion to energy consumption and eliminate the need for a three phase voltage connection. The signal is recorded by an integral data logger, allowing users to produce graphical analysis and CSV files using Deltrax software, which enables captured data to be quickly and easily downloaded.

To date MMU has used conventional sub-metering units at its Manchester campus. The need to install sub-meters at Crewe provided the opportunity to use Escot.

MMU estates manager Mike Neary said: ”Ease of installation was one of the main reasons for trying Escot and it has proved itself by going in very smoothly, connecting straight to the distribution board. It is so much easier to install than conventional sub-metering systems and we are very pleased with it. However choosing Escot was also about how the units operate as our energy management team plan to set-up league tables involving students in the evaluation of the captured data, which is measured in kW, to assess their usage and to create greater awareness of modifying energy consumption.”

As Escot is a multi-channel sub-metering system which measures who is using what and when, it is ideal for a university environment with both individual rooms and communal facilities, which have heavy and variable consumption during term and holiday periods.

The Escot sub-metering system can be also be fitted to a sub-station to determine spare capacity on its mains feed to avoid overloading an electrical distribution system or individual circuit.

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