In this episode, we talk about a project which aims to build a basis for academic research on energy efficient household appliances and to contribute to public awareness on energy efficiency and hence where a research center has been built with this project.
Faik Uyanık: This is the New Horizons podcasts prepared by United Nations Development Programme in Turkey. In this episode, we talk about a project which aims to build a basis for academic research on energy efficient household appliances and to contribute to public awareness on energy efficiency and hence where a research center has been built with this project. Our contributor is from Ankara University. He is the Head of Electrical and Electronic Engineering Department in Faculty of Engineering. Prof. Dr. Hakkı Gökhan İlk. Welcome.
Hakkı Gökhan İlk: I am glad to be here.
Faik Uyanık: I should say that this project has been supported by grant programme of Market Transformation of Energy Efficient Appliances which is implemented by the General Directorate for Renewable Energy (GDRE) of the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) with the financial assistance of the Global Environment Facility (GEF). The grant programme was started for universities in 2014 and we also announced it. 5 university projects on energy efficiency of electrical household appliances was supported. And one of them is yours from Ankara University. You have a project named ‘Ankara Research Center of Energy Efficiency in Electrical Household Appliances’. This is the full name of your project. What is the purpose of this? How did the idea come up?
Hakkı Gökhan İlk: First, I would like to wish a good day for everyone. The main theme of our project was to establish an energy efficiency laboratory within Ankara University, in Ankara. This constituted the academic and scientific side of our project. According to the project proposal prepared for UNDP, we were required to prepare and open a course about the topic. This course could be either undergraduate or a graduate course. We preferred to open this course as an elective undergraduate course. The course is not only for students of Electrical and Electronic Engineering Department, but for all the students in Faculty of Engineering. The course code is ELE311 and it is titled Introduction to Energy Efficiency.
Faik Uyanık: So now engineering students can take this elective course.
Hakkı Gökhan İlk: Starting from this semester, from September 2014 Fall Semester on, this course has started. It is 2 hours of theory and 2 hours of practice. The practical part is held in the laboratory that I just mentioned. The aim of the course is to raise awareness on importance of energy efficiency and train new generations on the significance of energy efficiency. Because, as you know, the appliances can be made energy efficient and consumption-sensitive with the right design. Actually, to pass this awareness to next generations and to educate conscious engineers who will make designs on this subject is extremely important.
Faik Uyanık:So it has a long name, I have said it in the beginning. ‘Ankara Research Center of Energy Efficiency in Electrical Household Appliances’. There is a website called evatev.com for this center. If interested, you can visit the website. It was a 9-month project. You started at the beginning of 2014, I guess on February. Until today, what did you do with this project? The project ended in October and you still receive results. Could you talk about this process?
Hakkı Gökhan İlk: Well, actually 9 months was a very short period of time for a project like this. So we realized we made some commitments that are very ambitious. I should say the establishment of the laboratory literally overwhelmed us because we established it and naturally it was in an isolated place. This is very important for replicability of tests and experiments. The laboratory is heat, light and sound-proof. So we have built an structure in which you can repeat the experiments and get the same results if you follow the standards. Then we completed a machine and equipment park to be used in this structure, with the support of the institutions we have just named. And the laboratory was all set before September because, as you know, in September we started the energy efficiency course.
Faik Uyanık: In this episode, we are talking about a project on Market Transformation of Energy Efficient Appliances. You can share your thoughts and make contributions to this episode by using #YeniUfuklar hashtag on Twitter. We are together with Hakkı Gökhan İlk, from Ankara University. It was important to establish the center. Let us talk more about the Center, what is being done and what will be done in there?
Hakkı Gökhan İlk: Of course, we have provided the necessary conditions by establishing its basic structure and supplying the machines and equipment, however there is still a lot of work to do beyond this point. So what are these? As you know, there is so called wet group in electrical household appliances, including equipments like washing machine, dishwasher. Except this wet group, we can measure energy efficiency of all electrical household appliances that comes to your mind. In our laboratory, we have the structure to measure energy efficiency of all electrical household appliances that you can think of, such as refrigerator, lighting group, iron, tea-coffee machines. We measure the energy efficiency of these appliances with the consideration of certain standards and also with the consideration of other parameters which are not among the standard parameters and which we work on in our scientific studies and we think they are important for measuring energy efficiency performance of an appliance.
Faik Uyanık: Now let us talk about the elective course more. We have mentioned that it is in the course list from this semester on. What do we teach to students? What is the situation in academic world on this matter? Is energy efficiency really getting a place in Faculty of Engineering curricula? What is your observation?
Hakkı Gökhan İlk: Traditionally, we do not teach energy efficiency in Electrical and Electronical Engineering Departments. However, as you know topics of sustainable energy, clean energy, energy efficiency which can be also defined as conscious consumption of energy have recently become very important. Energy efficiency is very popular and these topics appeared to be very important in the agenda. So within the scope of our project, we opened a course on this. I suppose this course would be opened eventually. However the laboratory would always be a problem in the sense of lack of financial resources and lack of putting into implementation as soon as possible. In this sense, I believe the project was very beneficial in this sense.
Faik Uyanık: To observe the field, the market, and the habits must be quite significant in the implementation process of the project. You were a five people working in the project. And we have Işıl Şirin Selçuk from the project team. Thank you for being here. You are a PhD candidate in the same department. Let’s talk about the consumption side in Turkey. What were your observations during the process?
Işıl Şirin Selçuk: When we look at the demand side of the story in Turkey, we see that small appliances are consumed by households. When we have a close look at the households, we see that the device that causes electrical consumption most is the refrigerator. There are a lot of reasons behind this. To begin with, 98% of all houses, meaning almost in all houses, there is a refrigerator. In addition, refrigerator is a device that constantly works and opening and closing the door increases energy consumption. So we see that the refrigerator is important in this sense. However, when we look at the recent trends, air conditioners also draw our attention. In 2000s there weren’t air conditioners in most of the houses, whereas now we observe a massive increase in the demand. So we believe there are serious opportunities and facts that worth paying attention in cooling and heating.
Faik Uyanık: We can say that especially devices like refrigerators and air conditioners consume more energy. And you developed the project based on these observations. I will again ask Prof. Dr. Hakkı Gökhan İlk. Project has come to an end. What do you think is the impact of this grant programme on your work, given by Market Transformation of Energy Efficient Appliances project?
Hakkı Gökhan İlk: GEF, Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources General Directorate of Renewable Energy and UNDP, as you know, these are very important institutions. I believe it was very important that our project was implemented with the support of these honorable institutions. Maybe, in some way we would be able to establish this laboratory with private or public resources; however the project certainly would not be this effective and this popular. Also as I said, these academic or scientific projects can take years to be completed. We would not have accomplished this in 9 months without the support. Of course another aspect of the project is industrial. It is true that we have established the laboratory for educational reasons. However, since we have established it in proper standards, SMEs or big producers can use our center for energy labeling, measuring and evaluations. So this is the concrete aspect of the project. Therefore, during the design phase before production, if there is a request to benefit from our scientific and academic ideas, our laboratory is open.
Faik Uyanık: There is information available on evatev.com. Your center studies on production as much as consumption. Of course policies have an impact for achieving the market transformation of energy efficient appliances. Presumably, decision makers will receive these messages. Last question, what you have told us is good until now, however sustainability is also important. What are you planning, how will you ensure to sustain your outcomes and to get better results?
Hakkı Gökhan İlk: For me, the most important step was the opening of the introductory course because we do not teach only scientific subjects to our engineers. We teach the social, economical and cultural importance of energy efficiency because if they work on energy efficient products, make the designs accordingly, and promote the energy efficient products, we will contribute to carbon emissions at the leastwise. We have a serious contribution to the environment. So this is not a subject just to be observed by electrical electronical engineering point of view. This is actually a phenomenon affecting the ecosystem, the natural environment we live in. This course will be given every fall semester. I believe next generation engineers will be more sensitive on the subject. Plus, the laboratory will be there as long as the department exists. So if there are any institutions or persons who would like to make measurements or evaluations, they can use the laboratory. Therefore, I do not think that this is a temporary project. I clearly see that this is sustainable.
Faik Uyanık: A very important center for Turkey, a country who does not have abundant energy resources. Thank you very much for joining us today. Congratulations again on your success!
Hakkı Gökhan İlk: Thank you very much. Have a nice day.
Faik Uyanık: This week our guests were Prof Dr.Hakkı Gökhan İlk from Ankara University and Işıl Şirin Selçuk from the project team. We come to the end of New Horizons podcasts prepared by UNDP in Turkey. This program has been recorded at the studio of Radyo İlef of Ankara University Communications Department. You can follow our program on iTunes, Soundcloud, TuneIn, Pure Connect and Audioboo in podcast format, on FM frequency in İstanbul, on Açık Radyo (Open Radio) on internet, on nearly fifty Police radios, on MYCY radio from Cyprus and also on university radios in our broadcasting network and on tr.undp.org. Our user name for social media is undpturkiye. Hope to see you soon, good bye!
Prof. Dr. Hakkı Gökhan İlk, Electrical and Electronic Engineering Department in Faculty of Engineering, Ankara University
Işıl Şirin Selçuk, Ankara University