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  • SPS Team

Energy efficiency: How smart tech is the driving force behind reducing costs and carbon emissions

There’s no doubt that energy efficiency efforts play a major role in the struggle to address climate change, yet it’s often cost-saving initiatives that drive us to address our corporate energy consumption. Building efficiency is leading the way, so if you’re running a commercial enterprise and you want to improve your energy efficiency and benefit from substantial savings, then read on.

How much energy is your business using?

Gauging how energy efficient your company is doesn’t need to be complicated. For example; if you're heating your office from 6-9 am, then rapidly cooling it once staff enter the building, you're not energy efficient and you're wasting money. But how can you constantly monitor all equipment and consider environmental factors at play?

Building efficiency is monitored largely through inlet voltage and energy consumption, as well as changes in temperature, air quality, gas and carbon monoxide levels, light, sound, and motion. Smart Plant Systems is a next-generation environmental visibility, safety, security, and monitoring tool. By overlaying sensors into a range of plant systems, such as chillers, boilers, fans, pumps, and AHU’s, we can monitor the environment, analyse data, and make recommendations for energy efficiency in real-time.

These include:

Equipment Sensors – we monitor and analyse pump rpm, boiler flow and return temperatures, fan usage, and chiller flow and return.

Environmental Sensors – we monitor and analyse air quality, airspeed and air temperatures changes, hot water flow, humidity, lighting, tap temperatures, sound and many more.

PIR Monitoring – this system is used to detect people and occupancy, most commonly seen in office buildings when the lights go out if the room is not occupied. Our sensors can also detect peak time usage of space, such as canteens and meeting room occupancy, allowing you to restrict areas to save energy or apply reactive cleaning.

By supplying robust energy consumption baselines and flagging any potential energy efficiency issues, SPS can increase building energy efficiency exponentially.

Safety first and the impact of COVID-19

We designed SPS with the mindset that ‘safety is no accident’. Not to sound dramatic, but plant rooms are potential ticking time bombs. The average commercial building can house up to 70,000kW of natural gas contained in combustible gas-fuelled burners/boilers which exhaust CO (an odourless, poisonous and tasteless noxious chemical), as well as high-temperature systems, high-pressure systems, high voltage electrical components, mechanical devices, and much more.

In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic brought with it restrictions which resulted in energy efficiency issues, non-compliance, and potential safety hazards. When buildings such as care homes and hospitals restricted engineer call-outs, with no visible eyes on plant rooms, hazardous and costly problems arose.

Smart tech solutions

At Smart Plant Systems we are dedicated to increasing building operation efficiencies through sophisticated data analysis, deliverable via a clear and easy to read client dashboard. We are essentially a tech company; with a full-time team of developers, we contextualise data on everything from air quality to changes in temperature, humidity, pressure, gas and CO, light, sound, motion and air quality. We then interpret these in terms of energy efficiency.

The key to energy efficiency is the ability to acquire data and then make solid recommendations on energy efficiency based on those findings. Smart Plant Systems does all of this for you, providing key recommendations and changes to save you time, money and reduce your carbon footprint and emissions.

No larger than a pack of cards, our wireless sensors are encrypted, require no internet connection, and have a reach of over 950m. They can be installed in less than two hours and have a 10-year battery life. Because SPS is an “off-grid” device, requiring no external connection (WiFi, ethernet or cell), it’s always switched on and monitoring your environment, even during power cuts.

Take any supermarket chain as an example; by installing SPS, they can monitor all store plants for energy efficiency through the ‘World View’ dashboard. You don’t have to be an energy expert either; the dashboard’s ‘Building Status Report’ is easy to read and allows you to take immediate action to repair any efficiency issues.

Reducing your commercial carbon footprint

A building's carbon footprint is defined by the amount of CO2 it emits during its operations. The built environment currently contributes around 40% of the UK's total carbon footprint (Source: ). Although newly constructed buildings are generally more energy-efficient, it's up to individual companies to consider their emission impact on the environment.

There’s no doubt that energy conservation and waste reduction will cut your carbon footprint, have an impact on climate change, and save your business money. Integrating a carbon reduction framework is made easy by using Smart Plant Systems. Through encrypted data retention SPS builds a highly accurate picture of consumption, which in turn can reduce both energy use and expenditure.

How much can you save?

Energy loss can result in significant financial loss and in today’s world that’s not something anyone can afford. Daikin, one of the world's leading air conditioning manufacturers stated that a single misconfigured chiller could cost up to £30,000 per annum in excessive energy loss.

We calculated that we save our clients approximately 8x the installation investment per annum. The high potential impact of SPS SmartAnalytics and relatively low cost of energy efficiency measures can save on average, £800 per data point (sensor) per year, seeing a fast ROI and making the solution effectively free, plus savings.

In summary, SPS will save your business time and money by making your building more efficient whilst reducing your carbon footprint and reducing emissions created by wasted energy. It’s like having the entire building in the palm of your hand!

Contact us to find out how SPS can support you in making huge financial and operational savings whilst driving productivity and safety.

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