University campus moves to joined-up building management

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A disparate and dispersed range of building-management and other building systems at Oxford Brookes University have been brought together in a single system using technology from North Building Technology.
The application of integrated building-management technology at Oxford Brookes University has had a dramatic and positive impact on the management of the site. Some existing plant controls were provided by Trend and previously operated as stand-alone systems. Using networking products from North Building Technologies, AES Control Systems (an approved partner) has used the university’s internal telephone network and IT infrastructure to connect all outlying buildings to a common user interface — North ObSys software. The work includes interfaces to power meters and fire-detection equipment from various manufacturers. The ObSys work station runs the new DataManager logging and analysis software from North. DataManager can store up to 500 000 values from up to 1000 different points. Each point is logged, archived and analysed using North’s Artificial Intelligence data-analysis tool within data manager. This automatically learns a profile for each point and can generate alarm limits that are far more in tune with with normal operation of the building. DataManager uses this intelligence to predict alarm conditions and indicate its confidence that an alarm will occur. Alarms can be delivered by e-mail, SMS or directly to ObSys. North’s ZiP network has been installed in all 47 residential blocks to provide energy-saving control of DHW and heating circuits. The ZiP controllers are connect to a North Commander that provides connectivity to the energy manager’s desk via the university’s IT infrastructure. AES has used the Zip System to monitor the temperature of DHW tanks to check for element failures. If a failure occurs, the water is pasteurised before use. Carl Stubbs, energy manager at the university, tells us that the university is installing a second phase in other residential blocks. He says, ‘The strong partnership between AES and North has meant that we get access to a strong multi-layered support structure and early access to new products.’
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