Unlocking Industrial Energy Efficiency Through Optimized Energy Management Systems

Use of software-based, optimized energy management system could reduce energy consumption in industrial facilities by 15% or more.

The Regents of the University of California on behalf of the Berkeley campus


Berkeley, CA

Recipient Location


Senate District


Assembly District



Amount Spent



Project Status

Project Result

Final report is in ERDD pubs unit and invoices all received and processed. Nothing new as of 7/16/2020.[br/][br/]The project is complete. The Lightapp energy management system collected and analyzed data from sensors installed in 102 industrial facilities. The energy management system provided real-time data to facility personnel and customized recommendations on how to reduce energy use and optimize equipment performance. Annualized energy cost savings are estimated to be $812,000 and greenhouse gas reductions estimated to be 1,500 tons for the facilities analyzed. The industrial customer demand for the software-based system was high, with 22 percent of all eligible sites ageing to join the project 41 percent of all project participants opting to subscribe to the service at the end of the project. The Lightapp brand was changed to Zira in September 2019.

The Issue

Historically, industrial facilities have paid little attention to electricity consumption. Many industrial customers are unaware of low-cost energy conservation and energy efficiency opportunities. Often the only electricity data available is at the whole facility level and cannot be easily analyzed to find energy-saving opportunities. Process-level sub-metering has been rare due to its historically high costs and it is typically not used to find ways to lower energy costs. Energy management systems that use real-time data and analysis to identify energy savings are not available in the market.

Project Innovation

The University of California at Berkeley, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of Chicago, have partnered with Lightapp Technologies to demonstrate a pre-commercial, software-based, optimized energy management system in industrial facilities. Together, they will demonstrate Lightapp's energy-monitoring system on compressed air systems in 100 California industrial plants served by the state's investor-owned utilities.

Project Benefits

The Lightapp technology takes an innovative approach by relating electricity use and operating measurements to the production outputs of specific facility systems. This project monitored compressed air systems over time, looking at both the supply side (the compressor) and the demand side (production). The software tool then identifies anomalies and makes recommendations to lower the overall energy intensity of production and save energy and money. This project demonstrates the operational effectiveness and financial viability of deploying a more developed version of the technology in California industries and optimizes electricity consumption in compressed air systems, a common system in many industries.

Lower Costs


The project showed that using the Lightapp platform can lower energy use and costs and optimize industrial processes in a variety of manufacturing sectors. Market assessments and technology deployed have estimated savings of 15% to 17% in compressed air system energy use with paybacks of less than 3 years. Preliminary savings analysis shows the participating plants reduced electricity use by 6.3 million kWh/year, saving $812,000. The recipient continued to monitor all the sites and information on the savings from all 102 sites will be available in January 2020.

Key Project Members

Project Member

Andrew Campbell

Executive Director





Lightapp Technologies


CDA Systems


Match Partners


The Regents of the University of California on behalf of the Berkeley campus


Contact the Team