MN Clean Energy Entrepreneur: 75F

Based in Burnsvile, Minnesota, 75F caught our eye by winning a slew of awards in the last few years. We spoke with Jane Kaster, Marketing Director for 75F, to learn more about their high-tech solutions for helping people save energy.

Can you tell us a little about 75F?

Jane Kaster: 75F is a building automation system that makes light commercial buildings more comfortable and energy efficient.

The name was inspired by the fact that the human body is most comfortable at 75° Fahrenheit. In fact, a July, 2008 United Nations campaign called for raising the thermostats in the United Nations Secretariat building from 70° F to 75° F for the world body’s conference rooms.

Using Internet of Things design, 75F harnesses the computing power of the cloud and packs it into smart HVAC devices that make people more comfortable, efficient and informed than ever before.

Benefits of 75F include:

  • Increases Comfort
    • Individual Room Comfort Control
    • Humidity Compensation
    • Weather-Based Tuning
    • Self-Optimizing

  • Saves Energy
    • Multi-Stage Fan Support
    • No Bypass Dampers
    • Occupancy Detection and Auto Away
    • Demand Control Ventilation

You’ve won a lot of awards…which one meant the most to you?

Jane Kaster: Each and every award 75F has received has carried a special meaning and contributed to our startup journey.

Winning Minnesota Cup’s Energy Division Award was special because it was a local award and gave us hometown pride. We have an awesome local community that supports innovation and we are grateful for all the support.

Getting the opportunity to speak at Google Demo Day was extraordinary because, well it’s Google and, it gave us the opportunity to take our Minnesota company to the national stage.

Getting the opportunity to participate and win Rise of the Rest with Steve Case was a huge accomplishment because of the rare occasion and chance to stand with some of the best startups from around the nation.

Cleantech Open Energy Efficiency Award was special because it gave us the sense of accomplishment that we are doing something that can impact the world.

Lowering carbon footprint is very important to our company, so while it’s not an award, the UNEP-SBCI partnership is high on our list of accomplishments. The UNEP-SBCI is a partnership of major public and private sector stakeholders in the building sector, working to promote sustainable building policies and practices worldwide. Globally, buildings are responsible for 40% of annual energy consumption and up to 30% of all energy-related greenhouse gas emissions. In order to solve these challenges, we believe broader community collaboration is critical.

What size of buildings and kinds of customers do you work with?

Jane Kaster: 75F is filling the void in the light commercial building market to provide an effective and energy efficient zone control HVAC system. Light commercial buildings in the US make up over 90% of buildings in the market, and yet there are no solutions that solve their key challenges. Residential solutions do not meet their complex needs, while solutions for Class A buildings are not cost effective. Our system is able to deliver both energy savings and comfort at lower costs.

75F has installed systems in more than 30 buildings. Customers have included: Border Foods (operator of over 100 Taco Bell restaurant locations in the Midwest), YogaFit (Lift Brands partner), Magnet 360, Salo, and more.

Here in Minnesota (and beyond) what do you see as the greatest opportunity for energy efficiency?

Jane Kaster: Deepinder Singh, CEO and founder of 75F, believes the federal government, utilities and global corporate entities would be wise to pay more attention to efficiency in their efforts to reduce carbon emissions, rather than focusing only on clean energy generation such as wind or solar.

A large amount of money has been pushed into renewables but sustainability starts with energy efficiency. You don’t have to support a whole lot of green sources of energy if you cut your energy use. While renewable energy is a good thing, it requires energy for material extraction, production and transportation to manufacture solar panels and wind turbines. Efficiency is the low hanging fruit of climate change since a minimal investment can reduce consumption dramatically.

75F takes into account weather data, building information, occupancy, sun exposure and occupancy to determine an optimal temperature for offices. 75F can save companies as much as 40% on energy, while increasing the comfort of employees. Deployed at a national level, the 75F solution could save up to 560 billion BTUs, the equivalent of the carbon output of 23 coal-fired plants.

At the state and national level, we need to place as much focus on supporting and funding innovation that focuses on a reduction on the amount of energy consumed.

Click here to learn more about 75F >>


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