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AESP Summer Study Recap (All Aboard the Steam Trap Express) with Joe Bickham

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Joe Bickham's picture
Program Manager- Consumers C&I Franklin Energy

Joe Bickham is with Franklin Energy and serves as the Specialty Program Manager designing and leading energy efficiency program implementation for Consumers Energy. He is a Certified Energy...

  • Member since 2019
  • 2 items added with 2,193 views
  • Sep 5, 2019

The event AESP Summer Conference in Toronto, Canada, gave valuable insight to learn, connect, and meet other industry professionals. It started out with great networking, allowing time for people to visit booths, meet colleagues from across the country, as well as learn valuable insight about the companies. By utilizing times like this as well as the Whova app this was the best networking group I've seen at these conferences. 

The conference started off with a great opening session, talking about the Canada Energy focus as well as the recent changes in Ontario. Some key takeaways were to always preach the utilization of Energy Efficiency programs as an affordable option for utility grid optimization and implementation. We then got a good boost in our ego from Jeff Trippett author of “Unleashing Your Superpower” who really focused on how to capture, connect, and convince your clients and audiences by believing and becoming the industry expert.

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During the breakout sessions, all of the speakers did an excellent job representing the dynamic options for energy efficiency, grid optimization, demand response, and utility challenges. A few action items I took away were to always look at way to collaborate with other utilities on implementation and savings, new technologies are always on the horizon and there is always something to learn, & your personal brand is important when representing yourself for your company and personal growth.

Our Session 2A Technology was very well attended and received from Collin Coker speaking on Thermal Energy Storage to Rick Bain speaking on a innovative Fitbit tracker for HVAC systems and my presentation "Faster than a locomotive - Steam Trap Express." There was excitement around the new technologies that Rick and Collin presented and interest on how utility programs and implemented focus on technologies or market segmentations such as steam straps.

To close we learned some valuable lessons from Jody Urquhart on a topic This would be Funny…. If it Wasn’t Happening to Me!. Which really grasped the concepts of employee engagement, our engagement as managers, and the power of creating a dynamic workplan with fun, happiness, and laughter to increase the productivity.

I'm looking forward to the next AESP Event the largest of the year AESP 30th Annual Conference & Expo in Anaheim, CA Feb 17-20 2020

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Thank Joe for the Post!
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Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Sep 5, 2019

Thanks for sharing your takeaways Joe-- really helpful for those of us who were sadly unable to attend!

innovative Fitbit tracker for HVAC systems

This one caught my attention-- could you tell us more about what this was about? Sounds like a clever way to tap into gamification to encourage energy savings, the same way fitness trackers make a competition out of  your daily step count? 

AESP HQ's picture
AESP HQ on Sep 5, 2019

Rick Bain of Breezi spoke on this topic at the AESP conference. The coming  together of smart devices, predictive algorithms and HVAC equipment with the goal of maximizing energy efficiency...has opened up a new world of opportunities.  We'll connect you with Rick. It would be great to see an article or interview on this - curious minds want to know more!

Joe Bickham's picture
Joe Bickham on Sep 9, 2019

It was a cool technology to easily identify issues with a unit such as a furnace. Simply plug the probe into the filter and you are able to track and monitor points in equipment. It's able to tell you things like when to change your filter, how well your unit is performing, predict when maintenance is needed, and hopefully prevent heating/cooling outages. I thought this would be a great practice for utilities that offer a warranty program. To be able to remotely track and perform maintenace on the equiment... Good question Matt!

John Hargrove's picture
John Hargrove on Sep 9, 2019

Thanks for the great post Joe.  AESP's goal is to provide great venues for sharing information and networking and our summer conference in Toronto certainly did both.  You and all our other speakers are a big reason why.  Well done!

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