Energy Savings

Dashboard promotes good energy habits

Bo Carlsen is on a mission to eliminate unnecessary energy consumption both at work, where he helps run DTU’s Campus Service, and at home, where he monitors his own and his family’s energy consumption.

Bo Carlsen from DTU's Campus Service allies with the energy dashboard in the fight against unnecessary waste of energy.
Head of section at DTU Campus Service Bo Carlsen reduced energy consumption by 43 per cent in one of DTU's office buildings in an attempt to eliminate energy guzzlers. Photo: Bax Lindhardt
The experiment in Building 409 shows that changes in behaviour can have a great impact, and that the Dashboard can help promote energy-saving behaviour.
The experiment in Building 409 shows that changes in behaviour can have a great impact, and that the Energy Dashboard can help promote energy-saving behaviour. Photo: Bax Lindhardt

Representative of modern office buildings

Building 409 was built in 2016 and covers 2,000 m2, on two levels. The facade is made of glass and inside there are raw concrete walls, a grey cement floor, and visible installations on a ceiling lined with pipes.

Building 409 represents a very small part of the total electricity consumption at DTU Lyngby Campus, but the 43 per cent energy savings that Bo Carlsen achieves by turning off all equipment over a weekend shows shows what can be saved in all the buildings that primarily house office facilities.

Bo Carlsen often hears people say that changes in one’s own behaviour are a drop in the ocean; that what the individual does isn’t very important. But for him, the experiment in Building 409 and the use of the Energy Dashboard prove otherwise. They show that changes in behaviour can have a great impact, and that the Dashboard can help promote energy-saving behaviour.

Monitors household consumption

While he’s at work, Bo Carslen keeps an eye on the energy consumption in his own home using a program that’s similar to DTU’s Energy Dashboard. He is shown a floor plan of his newly built house.

Bo Carlsen can see on the screen that his son, Emil, is home from school, as the program shows 580 watts being consumed inside his room. It costs Bo Carlsen two kroner per hour when Emil plays on his computer. There’s also activity in another room in the house. Bo Carlsen attributes this to his other son Magnus, who’s probably using his iPad and may have the light on in his room.

Bo Carlsen started keeping an eye on his family’s energy consumption when energy prices skyrocketed in spring. He found that his household’s base consumption was around 1,000 watts a day. He was surprised by how high it was, and started to look into it in more detail.

On his desk at home, Bo Carlsen had two computer monitors and a Sonos speaker. And both boys had the same setup in their rooms. Bo bought some power strips so the equipment could be turned off when it wasn’t being used. As a result, the consumption fell slightly.

He kept looking. The Carlsen family had a Sonos speaker in every room of the house. They used just as much electricity when they weren’t playing music as when they were, Bo Carlsen learned. He made sure to turn off the speakers at night, when they weren’t being used, and before they went out.

This made the family’s base consumption drop to 400 watts a day. That’s a reduction of 60 per cent, simply by eliminating standby consumption.

Bo Carlsen is happy with this, and it gives him more motivation to minimize unnecessary energy waste at DTU.


A pilot project on DTU Lyngby Campus shows - together with experience from the Danish Energy Agency - that electricity consumption can be reduced by approx. 10 per cent just by introducing good energy habits in everyday life. This means turning off the lights, turning off the heat and unplugging the equipment that uses energy, when it's appropriate. 


Employees and students at DTU can follow the university's energy consumption on DTU Inside:


Bo Carlsen

Bo Carlsen Head of Section Campus Service Mobile: +45 93511494