Virginia Commonwealth University

Virginia Commonwealth University

Established in 1838, Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) in Richmond, VA, is dedicated to discovery and creativity. With a diverse student enrollment of over 30,000, it fosters strength in the bold and unconventional, is ranked a top 100 research university, and is home to a first-rate graduate arts school.

In July 2019, VCU designated its Engineering and Utilities building for Tune®installation. Being one of the older buildings on campus, it has undergone multiple renovations over the years. Consequently, it has more breaker boxes per square foot than most buildings of its type. The installation required 17 Tune®devices, whereas most building of its size and type would only require seven or eight.

In the Engineering and Utilities building at VCU, the dollars spent on electricity dropped by 10%, and the raw KWh consumption decreased by 9%, or 12%, after weather normalization.



Tune® is perfectly designed to deliver significant energy savings to universities and other multi-building, multi-unit organizations.


Fall and summer are two seasons each year when consumers shift from air conditioning to heat. These seasons are also the lowest consumption times each year.

“Normalizing for weather” takes a 20+ NOAA history of an area and smooths the annual weather variations. A 12-month pre-history of electricity consumption to the pilot period is then used to create a ‘consumption pattern’ for the building. This along with the confidence factor that the consumption can be predicted for future periods before and after the pilot period.

We use trusted algorithms from third-party engineering groups to take the historical and the pilot period data to compare with the predicted consumption, so that the pre-pilot period and the pilot period are both weather normalized for comparison. The confidence factor for the VCU, 700 Grace Road building is over 96% that our model is accurate.

Dominion Power is subject to the VA Public Service Commission rate structure,which has limited increases in KWh while approving increases in the peak demand charges subject to primarily commercial consumers. Since the peak charges are not broken out distinctly on the power bills, they range between $825 to $950 of each monthly bill examined. These charges change annually.