Not so far, far away, after all

Ordinarily, we’d restrict the t-mac system to Earth-bound buildings, but with May the fourth being this weekend, the Star Wars fans among us are thinking about a galaxy far far away (and for those of you who aren’t with us yet, force yourself to read the date out loud).

Every building could be more energy efficient with the right application of metering, monitoring and controls – whether or not they have a terrestrial base.

We’ve deployed t-mac engineers to some strange places, but none as hostile as the command deck of the Galactic Empire’s DS-1 Orbital Battle Station, aka the Death Star. But in the spirit of preparedness, we want to be ready when The Emperor calls, so I’ve been considering what would happen if Emperor Palpatine actually did pick up the phone. After all, we can’t crush the Rebellion for him, but we can take worries about the energy consumption of the universe’s largest machine off his hands.

First things first – our initial walkthrough would flag up some energy no-nos and a few quick wins. Imperial Stormtroopers have terrible peripheral vision thanks to the design of their helmets, and the semi-solid gloves would make flicking switches difficult, so we’d advise phased lighting controls in sectors of the Battle Station which were active at different times of day.

The Death Star never sleeps (after all, it’s bad for business to be caught napping when the Rebel Alliance strike), so out-of-hours consumption isn’t an issue, although further-flung parts of the space station, like Stormtrooper bunkrooms, could benefit from reduced lux and heat levels when the Empire’s deadly army isn’t napping.

Next, t-mac’s metering and monitoring would, of course, highlight the main challenge facing any thrifty Empire commander – the Death Star’s superlaser. The battle station’s main weapon, while admittedly capable of destroying an entire planet, doesn’t do so very efficiently. In fact, online nerds (and I’m sure some of you reading this might think I’m rapidly fitting into the category myself) have calculated its requirements at 2.4×1032 watts – the UK’s entire energy requirement until, well, forever. So while we’d advise limiting its use only to vital operations, the Empire might benefit from using cheaper overnight electricity tariffs to charge their superweapon.

Other issues facing Empire commanders might include external factors like deep space light levels and fluctuating temperatures – easily factored in by t-mac’s Weather Feed – or a hypermatter core operating at reduced efficiency levels simply because it’s due routine maintenance.

Forward-thinking power-hungry galaxy-destroying warlords, as we know, always crave new technology, so our latest developments would be snapped up. t-mac’s iPhone app in particular, which we launched last month, would let Darth Vader identify consumption peaks and resolve energy surges from the palm of his sinister black glove. And the engineers installing the system would, of course, benefit from t-mac’s second generation G2 hardware when digging about in all that dusty cabling.

On a final note (and I really could go on all day), a quick straw poll in the office confirmed my suspicions: t-mac units, while they may not look like much, have got it where it counts – and are definitely female. With that in mind, any droids looking for a date can Tweet us @tmac_tech and we’ll pass on your serial numbers.