The strange case of the tiny electric heater versus the huge chiller

Published:  01 November, 2013

BMS, BEMS, control, energy management, Demand Logic
Spot the office where a personal electric heater has triggered central chiller plant to bring down its temperature.

Discovering that a personal electric heater was causing centralised chiller plant serving one of the buildings of King’s College London has helped to reduce energy costs by £390 000 a year. This example of heating fighting cooling was discovered by Demand Logic’s software analysing data from the building-management system — data covering over 1500 plant items and over 100 000 sensors and devices.

This discovery of this particular problem was made possible by the Demand Logic system monitoring hundreds of ceiling-mounted air-conditioning units in the building and identifying one that was demanding more from the central plant.

Demand Logic found that the college’s facilities were generally running very efficiently and that their controls were excellent. However, a lack of data-analysis capability meant that many problems had not been found.

On one case, boilers were cycling on and off because they did not have enough load. Conflicting set points for heating and cooling were found in the same open-plan office, causing both services to come on at the same time.

Out of the 47 energy saving opportunities registered in the Demand Logic system, 21 have so far been analysed in detail.

For more information on this story, click here: November 2013, 106

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