Pecan Street Research Consortium

The Pecan Street Research Consortium is a global collaboration of university faculty and graduate students conducting research to improve understanding and develop impactful solutions in the areas of utility system operations, climate change, integration of distributed energy and storage and customer needs and preferences.

Consortium members have access to the deepest U.S. source of original research data on disaggregated electricity, gas and water use. Data sets available to members include billions of time-stamped electricity, gas and water use records from the Pecan Street Research Institute’s original field research. Available data includes disaggregated customer electricity use (1-minute and 15-minute intervals), rooftop solar panel generation (south, southwest and west facing), electric vehicle charging, residential transformer loading from transformers with and without solar panels and EVs and original data from pricing trials and demand response and default setting behavioral trials.

This unprecedented source of original research data is made possible through the voluntary participation of hundreds of committed individuals who have opened their homes and businesses to advance knowledge and progress on energy, the environment, innovation and customer needs and preferences. All data is anonymized to ensure the privacy of the volunteer participants.

For more information about how your company can participate, please email Suzanne Russo at Pecan Street Inc.

Visit our application page to sign up.

Learn more about how to access the Pecan Street Research Institute’s curated datasets.

Learn more about Pecan Street’s research trials.

 

Membership terms and eligibility

Membership in the Pecan Street Research Consortium is free for students, faculty and researchers working on university-sponsored research, classroom instruction or curriculum development. The consortium’s research is led by Matthew Crosby, Pecan Street research division manager and former California PUC energy advisor.

 

Membership benefits

Upon sign-up, new members receive a free sample data set of customer disaggregated home electricity use. The free data set includes seven days of disaggregated, time-stamped, one-minute interval electricity use data for 10 homes participating in Pecan Street’s research in Austin.  The data set includes electricity use, voltage and apparent power readings for the whole home, and disaggregated electricity and apparent power readings for 12 circuits within the home.  Data for three homes with solar panels and two homes with a Level 2 electric car charger is also included.  The data set is also provided in 15-minute intervals.

This free data set appears to be the largest data set of disaggregated home electricity use ever made available to university researchers.

In addition to receiving the free data sample, new members receive lists of suggested research topics developed by utilities, technology companies and current research consortium members.

Members are eligible to propose research that, if selected by the consortium’s industry advisory council, provides free data for that research and receive exposure through presentations at technical conferences. Members are also eligible to compete for research stipends.

Alternatively, members can receive heavily-discounted academic rates for data in areas such as residential transformer loads and temperatures for transformer with and without solar PV and electric vehicles, disaggregated electricity use for homes with home energy audits, electric vehicle charging patterns and minute-to-minute voltage levels in homes with rooftop solar panels.

All data is time-stamped.

Members are also eligible to commission and participate in surveys and field interventions of existing Pecan Street research participants.

 

Governance and management

The consortium’s day-to-day activities are carried out by the Pecan Street Research Institute. The Institute manages dissemination of research data and access to research trial participants.

The consortium has two advisory committees. The Industry Advisory Council provides guidance and review on research topics. The Research Advisory Panel is made up of selected members and provides guidance on topic selection, and oversight and review of supported research.

 

About the Pecan Street Research Institute

Pecan Street formed its customer research network in 2011 and quickly developed the nation’s deepest customer energy use database.  More than 900 homes in Austin, Dallas-Ft. Worth and Corpus Christi are currently online, and the consumer energy measurement systems in their homes are reporting more than 89 million unique electricity use records per day.  Equipment in each home transmits energy use measurements for the whole-home and up to 23 circuits every minute to Pecan Street’s secure database (a subset of these homes have systems that report use in one second intervals).

In Austin’s Mueller community, where the research began, more than 200 participating homes have installed south and/or west facing rooftop solar. Additionally, 50 of the 69 participants in the Institute’s electric vehicle research trial live in that one-half square mile neighborhood, making it the highest concentration of electric vehicles in the U.S.

In late 2012, the Institute expanded its research into local small businesses, churches and synagogues and public schools. Its transformer measurement research went live in March 2013.

This summer, Pecan Street will expand its customer research network into other states.