Green Building Technologies

In a recent TechCrunch article, Green Building Technology You’ll Never See But Can Experience Now, the following alarming statistics were provided to call attention to the urgent need for technology innovation that addresses energy consumption:

  • The U.S. generates more CO2 emissions than any country in the world except China
  • Commercial and residential properties generate approximately 40% of the emissions in the U.S.
  • Almost 30% of the $202 billion spent annually on U.S. commercial and industrial energy wasted

lighting integrationThe article discusses some of the amazing waste conversion technology, renewable energy technology, and intelligent building technology that are available now such as:

  • Biogas digesters. They turn methane from food waste into electricity.
  • The world’s first air-cleaning paint.  It breaks down nitrous oxide and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into harmless substances by interacting with light.
  • Smart lighting. Entire lighting systems can adjust lighting levels in response to a factor such as the amount of natural light available at a given time.

At Control Consultants, Inc. (CCI), our single overriding purpose is to help our customers conserve energy in their buildings. We are always encouraged to see it in practice, and to learn about innovations in smart building technology, as well as other exciting sustainability innovations such as waste conversion and renewable energy technologies.

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Open Source Software and Building Integration

What is open source?
This video explains the concept of open source.

Why is open source so important in our industry?
Technology is developed at such a rapid rate these days, software (and available software support) for controls may become obsolete while the parts and controls may still be perfectly functional. Open source creates more opportunities for using controls longer, and opens the door for all kinds of systems and controls to work together.

An example: the Sedona Framework
Easy IO and Contemporary Controls are examples of manufacturers we carry who create controls that  leverage the Sedona Framework. Developed by Tridium, the Sedona Framwork is an open source development environment for the building integration industry. It provides a complete software platform for developing, deploying, integrating, and managing pervasive device applications at the lowest level. The Sedona Framework is an easy way for manufacturers to build their own device to internet applications rather than needing to build their own applications or use complex and difficult embedded programming tools.

Schneider Struxureware Lite: Revolutionizing energy retrofit projects

Structureware Lite from Schneider Electric

Structureware Lite from Schneider Electric (part # MPM-GW)

Schneider Struxureware Lite (SSL) is an innovative product from our friends at Schneider Electric. It is the missing link in building retrofit and energy projects.

Unparalleled Flexibility
Energy service companies (ESCO’s) and System Integrators who retrofit buildings are all over the SSL technology for its unparalleled flexibility. Benefits of the Schneider Struxureware Lite (PDF) include the following:

  • Completely tool-less set up with only a web browser (no licenses required!)
  • Totally wireless networking and integration of ZigBee-Pro t-stats from Viconics and Schneider, as well as EnOcean battery-less devices from many manufacturers
  • Everything you do or connect into a SSL device is exposed automagically via BACnet IP for integration to the enterprise EMS
  • IP, wireless ZigBee mesh or RS485 twisted pair CAN-bus networking between SSL devices, or a mixture of all of the above
  • HTML 5 graphics and dashboards served up from the SSL devices (a complete micro EMS in a box)
  • Onboard IO on some models for total control of typical unitary equipment while networking wirelessly
  • GPL graphically programmed logic or line coded via LUA line code (it’s your choice)

Three SSL Models
The SSL comes in three models.

  1. GW – The wireless gateway model, which looks and mounts like a WiFi access point – MPM-GW Data Sheet (PDF)
  2. UN – The universal model with wireless capabilities and built in I/O – MPM-UN Data Sheet (PDF)
  3. VA – The VAV model with built in I/O and with or without actuator – MPM-VA Data Sheet (PDF)
Struxureware Lite MPM-UN

Struxureware Lite (part # MPM-UN)

Any model can have both ZigBee and/or EnOcean wireless built in.

Models with IO can be used to control unitary equipment such as RTU, HP, AHU, UV and VAV!

That’s right, a completely wireless VAV or UV or RTU solution with no tools or licenses needed.

Wireless unitary control of equipment can be done using the UN or VA controllers that form a ZigBee wireless mesh network, or via IP or twisted pair, unitary equipment room or zone sensors for the unitary equipment can be EnOcean battery-less sensors, a 100% wireless battery-less solution.

Endless Potential for Applications
Great possibilities for this technology are everywhere, such as pneumatic VAV and UV retrofits or RTU retrofits using a roof top ZigBee mesh network, great for existing single or multi-story buildings and malls.

EnOcean devices play a key role in extending the capabilities of the SSL controllers, the EnOcean ecosystem devices such as sensors, relays, motion detectors, plug load controllers and battery operated hot water valve actuators can be used to retrofit buildings with advanced energy saving technologies with out pulling wires or having to deal with constant battery replacement.

Revolutionize your energy retrofit projects. Contact us at 781-335-8353 or here for Schneider Struxureware Lite pricing and availability.

‘Tis the Season

Signs the December holidays are fast approaching are popping up all over Control Consultants, Inc. We’ve decked the counter, filled the candy jars, and provided the dogs with holiday-themed dog toys. A word of advice, if you are planning to stop in at CCI’s counter this month, make sure to bring your sweet tooth.

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We have it on good authority that Santa digs Honeywell ball valves for his North Pole properties.

CCI's Ball Valve Christmas Tree

Our box of ornaments went missing, so we improvised with our tree decorations.

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These mints are the office favorite.

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Of course, this time of year wouldn’t be complete without candy canes.

If you’re local, stop in and celebrate with us. If you place your orders through ControlConsultantsOnline.com, be looking for surprises and treats in your orders.

CCI will be open every weekday this month, except Thursday, December 25th. We’re looking forward to celebrating the whole month with our customers!

Spyder BACnet Training

Today is Day #2 for our last Spyder BACnet Training of the year. Spyder BACnet TrainingThe class is hard at work on hands-on exercises that will help them master everything they need to know about about topics such as controller specifications, BACnet architecture, device addressing, function blocks, simulation, debugging, macros, BACnet objects, proxy points, Spyder library, priority array, VAV balancing, Spyder migration, Spyder alarms, and sharing LON and BACnet applications between devices.

We’ve begun to announce CCI’s 2015 Training Schedule. Call us at 781-335-8353 or visit our website to learn more. Registration begins on January 5, 2015.

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Cutest. Paperweight. Ever.

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Integrating Lighting And HVAC Controls

lighting integrationIn many buildings, HVAC and lighting are separate systems, but it doesn’t need to be that way. In fact, lighting and HVAC systems integration is an excellent way for facility managers to improve their building’s performance and comfort. The integration can decrease a facility’s energy consumption and environmental footprint.

Today’s Facility Manager recently published an article about integrating lighting and HVAC controls and suggest starting the process with an energy audit. The article mentions that audits can help reveal places to decrease energy consumption through lighting technology upgrades (i.e., replacing older technology lighting fixtures, ballasts, and lamps with LED technologies). We recently upgraded inside and outside lighting here at CCI, and will blogging about it soon!

Read TFM’s article Benefits Of Integrating Lighting And HVAC Controls.

If you are interested in learning more about integrating lighting controls into your BAS, contact CCI. You can also check out our blog post from a few weeks ago about Blue Ridge Technologies and their lighting controls solutions