Green AV?

I recently attended infocomm 2010. One topic of discussion was “Green AV”. It was pretty prevalent. Some manufacturers had amp meters attached to their gear with digital readouts so you could see in real time the amount of power consumption. I’ve even been noticing LEED accreditations on the email signatures of AV professionals.

Really? Green AV?

For years we’ve been integrating wake-on-lan, and sleep-on-lan procedures in our AV systems to minimize power consumption. I wonder if that qualifies us…

Green AV is a tough concept for me to get because i feel the best thing to do often is “turn the damn thing off”. Though I suppose that would be against my interest as one who makes his living from designing AV systems.

On nearly every project, I work up heat/power loads to determine how much electricity we’ll need as well as how much air conditioning required to cool the system. A few years ago out of curiosity I started to convert the power loads to their equivalent in oil (it was easy to find the conversion, though in the US I suppose most system are ultimately powered by coal).

There are about 5,800,000 BTU’s in a single barrel of oil. A barrel of oil is 42 gallons. Assuming perfect efficiency in the generation process….. You can take a 50” plasma screen and estimates that it consumes about 500 watts and further assume in a typical system runs for 12 hours per day. Total consumption for the day is 6 kilowatt hours. Multiply that by 3.412 to get the BTU equivalent, and we find that running this screen for the day consumes .353 barrels/oil.

Say your digital signage network has 20 screens, and you run them 12 hours per day, 365 days a year. The consumption is about 26 barrels or 1092 gallons of oil, not counting the computers to run it and the air conditioning to cool it.

I wonder how often the message is worth it? What exactly is Green AV?