Energy Monitoring and Management Systems

Energy savings can only occur when you receive quality information about your consumption AND you are provided with practical, everyday applications and gear to do something about your usage. The first step is to implement an Energy Monitoring System. (FIG. 1-5) Energy happens to be one of the only things we buy that we don’t know the cost of until after we use it — and have no idea what we used it for. There are several monitoring systems on the market these days. Since you can’t manage what you don’t measure, we lean towards the systems that gather data at the circuit level rather than overall consumption. These systems let you know the cost to operate detailed areas inside your home over time.

Dimming Makes a Difference

For few of us, the information provided by these systems is enough to help curb consumption—knowing you just spent $85 over the last 30 days on your basement lighting makes you think twice when you reach the top of the steps, and you remember to shut off the lights. (FIG. 6) But for most of us, we need a little more help. So in addition to the Monitoring System, we provide networked devices and applications to help you control your various systems or just flat-out automate them for you.

The second step is having a simple and convenient way to control lighting, shades and climate settings. We do this using Smartphones, Website Applications, TV screens & Tablets. The ability to control from outside the home is also crucial. Automating these systems with sensors will maximize your use of daylight or turn your lights off when a room is not in use or even regulate indoor air quality to feel more comfortable while reducing the demands on your HVAC system. Lighting accounts for 20% of all electricity consumed in the U.S., and 50% of that is wasted with inefficient light sources or in unoccupied rooms. Additional savings can be realized by controlling the amount of wattage used by light bulbs. Furthermore, installing  dimming devices conserves electricity and also extends  the life of your light bulbs.
The Monitoring System will also point out ‘vampire’ power wasters — the devices that suck down power even when they are perceived to be turned off. Using cloud-based power controllers we can schedule conservation periods at the device level that will cut the power entirely and eliminate waste altogether.

In addition to lowering your electric bills, implementing an Energy Management System can also extend the life of your appliances. Continuous diagnostics helps avoid thousands of dollars in wasted energy and costly repairs by providing notice of hidden problems. Energy Management can help keep your family safe. Automated email and text alerts can notify you when appliances are left on, if circuits are nearing capacity, or if critical home equipment goes off.

Lastly, an integrated energy monitoring and management system that gives you clear feedback and automated control over various loads in the home qualifies for 2 LEED points.


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Commercial Division Awarded Potomac Yards Marriott Contract


Bethesda Systems Commercial Division awarded new contract for the Potomac Yards Marriott Renaissance and Residence Inn Hotels in Crystal City.

First Newly Built LEED® Certified “Green” Hotels in Arlington, Virginia.  The hotels are owned by the JBG Companies and managed by Marriott International.

Bethesda, MD – July 20, 2010
– Bethesda Systems, a leading technology integration firm, today announced the recent contract award for the Audio Visual System Design & Installation within the public spaces of The Renaissance Crystal City Potomac Yards Hotel and The Residence Inn Crystal City Potomac Yards in Arlington, VA.

Anticipated to open this Winter, the 13-story building features an expansive lobby, restaurant, and an amenity floor with a 10,000 square foot grand ballroom and over 10,000 square feet of meeting rooms. 17 of the conference rooms will integrate lighting, shading systems, HVAC, A/V equipment and other electronics through a simple yet powerful interface in order to create an impressive experience for every meeting.

“The project will feature a Control4 system…the first one of its kind to run a large commercial public space venue such as this one.” says Jonathan Stovall, Partner at Bethesda Systems. “Historically, the legacy control systems required to run this level of A/V distribution & integration would cost owners 2-3 times as much as a new Control4 system today. In addition, the ongoing maintenance costs are substantially reduced because of the simplistic programming nature inherent of a Control4 system. When a source component is added or replaced down the road, the technician literally spends only minutes swapping the code…compared to hours with the legacy control systems.”

The system will be designed and programmed to maximize productivity. Included will be automated events that will save guests and staff time, while also helping to manage energy costs. This will be accomplished by coordinating lighting, temperature and electronics to engage based on time of day, events or manual control. Automated events might include Meeting Welcome/Break, Meeting In Progress, Cleaning, All On or All Off settings. Ultimately, this level of control will create the perfect ambiance for Marriott’s customers with little employee intervention and unobtrusive energy savings.

LEED® is the standard for environmentally responsible buildings set by the U.S. Green Building Council. The property will also feature an energy saving “green roof’ with plants and trees, providing a relaxing space for guests overlooking the U.S. Capitol and Potomac River.

About Bethesda Systems – Located in Bethesda, Maryland, Bethesda Systems is regarded as one of the leading AV & Control Systems integration firms in the National Capital Region.  With the recent launch of our Commercial Division, and close partnerships with many leading product manufacturers and software developers for AV, Control & Energy Management Systems, we provide a broad range of design/build services for various Commercial and Hospitality business solutions.  For more information please visit

About Control4 – Headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, Control4 is a leading provider of IP control systems, delivered intelligently through an easy-to-use and intuitive software interface. Founded in 2003, the company delivers affordable automation and control of lighting, music, video, HVAC, security, and energy management systems to the broad market through more than 1,600 custom integrators, retail outlets, and distributors in over 50 countries. Control4 is the platform of choice for major consumer electronics companies, hotels, businesses and utilities that require an intelligent, open and affordable control solution. For more information visit

About The JBG Companies – Headquartered in Chevy Chase, Maryland, The JBG Companies is an active investment fund sponsor, developer, owner and operator of office, residential, hotel and retail properties with more than $10 billion in assets under ownership, management and development. Founded in 1960, JBG has established a reputation as one of the leading real estate companies in the Washington metropolitan area.  By combining its broad transactional skill sets, organizational and financial capacity, a long and successful track record and strong reputation, JBG is able to take advantage of complex opportunities to maximize value to its investors and the community in which it operates.   More information can be found by visiting the company’s website:

About Marriott International, Inc. – MARRIOTT INTERNATIONAL, Inc. (NYSE:MAR) is a leading lodging company with more than 3,100 lodging properties in the United States and 66 other countries and territories. Marriott International operates and franchises hotels under the Marriott, JW Marriott, The Ritz-Carlton, Renaissance, Residence Inn, Courtyard, TownePlace Suites, Fairfield Inn, SpringHill Suites and Bulgari brand names; develops and operates vacation ownership resorts under the Marriott Vacation Club, Horizons by Marriott Vacation Club, The Ritz-Carlton Club and Grand Residences by Marriott brands; operates Marriott Executive Apartments; provides furnished corporate housing through its Marriott ExecuStay division; and operates conference centers. The company is headquartered in Bethesda, Md.  It is ranked as the lodging industry’s most admired company and one of the best companies to work for by FORTUNE ®. For more information please visit the Marriott web site at


Jonathan Stovall
Bethesda Systems