Q15: How much energy do I consume per day and how can I calculate it?
Team: Daily Energy, Larissa and Meret Maeva
We chose this question because we found it really interesting to see how much energy a normal person actually consumes in one day. Another point was to see if and where we could save energy for our environment.
We were discussing a while about how we could answer this difficult question without a wide knowledge that a researcher usually has. We decided then to do a self-experiment on our own, so we would also have a personal experience from it. In the following text we explain how we did the experiment and what we have learned about it.
Report of the Experiment
The purpose of the experiment was to figure out how much energy we consume in a normal day. For the self-experiment we wrote down everything we did and used in a day. First of all, we had to brainstorm about what’s necessary and what’s not in order to write it down.
Food and Drinks
Electricity at Home:
- Doing the dishes
Then we made a chart sheet with a rough estimation of our daily routine. We printed it out and doing the experiment we had this sheet with us all the time to write everything down on it. Another help we used was an app which is called ”Lifesum“. Usually it is an app for loosing weight, but we just used it for recording the food and drinks. You can scan the barcode of the product you’re eating and the app will show you all the food details, such as the calories. Another app which was useful was the pedometer. Almost everyone with a smartphone should have this app already included. This was a great help, because it would have been nearly impossible to count our steps by ourselves.
Afterwards we wrote every located data on an excel sheet and started to calculate it. We took an overall unit kWh. We used a calculator which Miss Suter has given us. You can find the link for the calculator in the sources.
Unfortunately, we couldn’t include some very interesting things in our calculations, because they are very difficult to figure out:
– Grey energy (from the food and electrical devices)
– Heating energy in our houses (anyway, at this point, we didn’t heat at home)
We will try to include them at a later point if we find the reliable and right sources to calculate them. Also, other groups from our class are searching for it (see Team Q67 – How much energy is embedded in agricultural products?).
We could learn a lot from this project and it was a very interesting experience. In the beginning, we thought it would be easy to calculate all those things, but after a little while we realised that it was quite difficult to do. There are so many different units of energy and we had to do a lot of research on the internet, also they had to be trustworthy sites.
To sum up: we are happy that we chose this topic and we will try to be more aware of our energy consumption in our future. Also we hope that we could give some eye-opening facts of our environment and hope that people become more conscious about their energy consumption, because, in fact, it isn’t that hard to change our behaviour. You can achieve a lot by just changing little things in your daily life.
Tables and Graphs
Umrechnung Benzin in Energie: wikipedia.org
Reviewed by Evelin Zeyrek-Gabriel and Eva Waiblinger
Projects related to this one:
Q67: How much energy is embedded in agricultural products?
Q59: Living without electricity
Q23: Top 5 Countries