Rising energy prices and green initiatives have increased awareness about the energy performance of buildings. The European “Energy Performance of Building Directive” also highlights the importance of building automation and smart building technologies and advises member states to promote and support the installation of so-called Building Automation Control Systems (“BACS”).
Finnish building automation specialist Fidelix is a market leading smart building automation specialist in Scandinavia for over 20 years. Around 30,000 buildings in Norther Europe have been equipped with Fidelix technology. The company emphasizes that the biggest challenge in improving the energy performance of buildings is not related to newly built office buildings, schools, hospitals and other estates. Today’s major challenge is related to improving the energy performance of existing buildings. Azeem Mohammed, export manager at Fidelix explains: “There are thousands and thousands of buildings that were designed and built more than two decades ago, in times when energy efficiency initiatives and smart building technology were not as much common practice as today. Fidelix strives to assist the owners and operators of these facilities in extending the lifetime of these buildings and improve the energy performance while safeguarding a productive and pleasant environment for the people working and living inside these buildings”.
Four step cycle
To help owners and operators of existing office buildings, schools, universities, hospitals, residential estates and other buildings to improve their energy performance while ensuring a healthy and comfortable working and living environment, Fidelix advises a comprehensive approach consisting of a four-step cycle:
- Implement sensors to understand the conditions
- Analyse the data and define building objectives
- Implement building automation system
- Monitor performance of the building and the building automation sensors
“It is especially important for owners of existing buildings to understand that technology is available that can be installed easily and as part of a step-by-step common senses approach. Starting to measure variables like temperature, humidity, CO2 and VOC levels throughout the building really does not require a considerable investment. And once data are available, it is much easier to decide whether it makes sense to take additional measures and install a Building Automation and Control System. A system which can be installed in a modular and flexible fashion”, says Azeem Mohammed.
Battery-operated wireless sensors
Most existing buildings have been equipped with HVAC and IT technology which was common at the time the building arose. Implementing additional power or networking cabling to support operation of sensing devices in each relevant room can be time consuming and costly. In many buildings it is almost impossible to carry out that type of work because of the operational use or the monumental state of the building.
The Fidelix portfolio contains a perfect solution to deal with aforementioned situations: battery-operated wireless sensors that can collect data related to temperature, humidity, CO2, VOC and presence of people. The sensors collect data every minute and send their data to a base station using the Wireless Mbus protocol. The bases station is connected to a powerful Fidelix controller that is able to publish the data in the Fidelix Webvision SCADA software.
“Installing wireless sensors is a smart solution to start taking control of the energy performance of any existing building. And by making sure the data is available in the BACS of Fidelix, you are also immediately prepared to implement actuators in a later stage”, explains Azeem Mohammed.
Example: Business Center In East of the Netherlands
A recent installation of the Fidelix sensors and controllers can be found in Losser, a village in the East of the Netherlands. In collaboration with the owners of the estate, a business center that provides office space to multiple tenants, mostly small enterprises, Fidelix has installed multiple sensors in each unit.
By installing the sensors, each tenant can be provided with current and historical data related to temperature, humidity, CO2 and VOC levels. Also passive infrared sensors are installed to monitor the occupancy of the units. Data can be correlated with the energy consumption in each unit. The data assists the owners of the facility with calculating the ROI of investments in HVAC installations in the building. Both the owners and the tenants now know exactly what the actual status is of working conditions, the consumption of energy and the related costs. It is putting owners and operators of buildings back in control of the efficiency of their buildings.
To learn more, please contact Fidelix:
Myllykivenkuja 1, 01620 Vantaa, FINLAND
Tel: +358 9 250 1288 / firstname.lastname@example.org