School of Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering


3 Mar 2022

New report finds smarter way to make homes more energy efficient

Person sat at a table holding a pink mug in one hand and a smart meter electronic screen in the other hand


Loughborough University has just completed a key part of a £4m project funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) called the Smart Meter Enabled Thermal Efficiency Ratings (SMETER) Innovation Programme.

The £1.1m scheme, carried out in partnership with Halton Housing, Leeds Beckett University and UCL, tested and developed eight different meters that measure thermal performance in 30 homes – two-storey houses and single-storey bungalows built between around 1927 and 1990.

Researchers found that the concept of using smart meter data to measure thermal performance is effective. SMETERs could play a role, not only in the energy rating of homes, but also in quantifying the improvement to energy efficiency following refurbishment and identifying under-performance of new homes.

Dr David Allinson of the Building Energy Research Group (BERG) in Loughborough's School of Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering, said: “The SMETER Programme has demonstrated that we can measure the performance of our homes in a relatively inexpensive and non-intrusive way using smart meter data.

“National implementation of in-use performance metrics for buildings would be a world-first and could help ensure that we all live in better-performing homes that really do save energy, are less expensive to heat, and do reduce our harmful carbon emissions.

“It is exciting to be working with fantastic collaborators at the forefront of research and innovation in this important area.”

Following the success of this work, BEIS has commissioned AECOM and Loughborough University to support a new SMETER Business Process Design project, phase 1 of which is now underway.

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School of Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering
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