Alibaba to digitize the company’s offices to conserve energy
Alibaba Group is tapping artificial intelligence to automate temperature control for energy conservation at the company’s headquarters as part of a group-wide drive to reach carbon neutrality by 2030.
Energy Expert is an AI-powered energy management tool created by Alibaba’s cloud computing branch, and it has been monitoring air conditioning and heating across the group’s 423,000 square meters campus.
“[The platform] helps companies achieve their carbon neutrality goals through advanced technologies and streamlined solutions,” said Chen Lijuan, General Manager of Product and Solutions at Alibaba Cloud.
The AI models will synthesize predictions based on historical data with real-time data about weather conditions and occupancy to optimize a building’s energy use.
This data guides the platform as it monitors room temperature. Every five minutes, it will send commands room by room to turn up or down heating and cooling units.
The tool has been operating for more than six months at Alibaba’s Xixi campus, cutting energy use by 30% during off-peak hours and lowering annual air-conditioning energy use during the summer by 17%.
In a pilot run covering half of the campus, Energy Expert cut annual carbon emissions by roughly 538 tons and reduced yearly electricity use by 600,000 kilowatt-hours.
Alibaba has vowed to achieve carbon neutrality in its operations by 2030 and slash emissions across its global and domestic supply chains.