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Surprising Science

Auditing a City’s Energy Loss

Getting an energy audit of a home or a commercial building has been streamlined by a team of scientists who have developed an infrared scanning system to cover large swaths of land.

Auditing a building or home to measure how much energy is lost unnecessarily can be a labor-intensive process. One project at M.I.T. aims to streamline the process: “The project uses a vehicle with automated cameras that take thermal infrared images of every building as it moves along, similar to the way Google Street View vehicles obtain visual imagery. Researcher Long Phan and Research Scientist Jonathan Jesneck, working with Professor Sanjay Sarma, developed the system, which they have used over the last few months to scan the entire city of Cambridge and an army installation.”


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