A Measure of sustainable progress: Convia Puts Industry on Track to Fast, Accurate Energy Management with Tool Displayed at Greenbuild
November 05, 2009
While the number of LEED certified buildings is on the rise, 25 percent of certified new buildings do not save as much energy as their designs predicted, and the majority do not track energy consumption once in use. Understanding that ongoing commissioning of energy management strategies must be employed in order for buildings to achieve long-term savings and optimal performance, Convia/A Herman Miller Company (Booth #1746) will be highlighting its Energy Track Reporting Tool and latest innovations in energy efficiency at the United States Green Building Council's (USGBC's) annual Greenbuild International Conference and Expo being held November 11-13 in Phoenix.
Convia's Energy Track Reporting Tool, which is installed in the USGBC's Washington, D.C. headquarters, displays a space's actual energy usage on a simple and intuitive dashboard interface. Energy monitoring chips built into Convia-enabled control components provides accurate reporting via the Energy Track tool at a zone (e.g. a private office, individual workstation, or workstation cluster) or circuit level. This granular and highly accurate data allows facility managers to optimize their building's performance now and into the future.
"Budgets are tight and sustainability is an increasingly important driver of savings," said Randy Storch, president of Convia. "Sustainable technology, such as building controls, can help users achieve long-term savings and significantly reduce their annual energy costs—but only if performance is tracked and energy strategies are modified on an ongoing basis."
"Traditional energy management control products can only manage energy based on estimates of consumed energy use," adds Storch. "With Convia's Energy Track, facility managers can now accurately determine the efficiency of their space with actual energy use reporting, from a single zone to an entire building. As a result, they can make informed, confident decisions about their energy strategies for immediate and ongoing improvement."
Ongoing Commissioning For Ongoing Value
Convia Controls along with the Energy Track Reporting Tool provide facility managers with an integrated system to both control and accurately report energy usage. The tool eliminates the need to purchase two separate systems (a control system and an independent metering device). Rather facility managers have functionality, control and data in one place, which allows them to identify the problem areas (i.e. areas with high consumption levels) for accurate and continual optimization.
Used in conjunction with Convia Controls, Energy Track permits managers to make adjustments to the system based on its reports, with no disruption to a space. By applying continuous commissioning, users can add 15 to 45 percent savings over a normally commissioned building and maintain long-term savings. Realization of these savings can also help facility managers qualify for funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and contribute toward LEED certification.
Energy Track enables users to quickly create reports that illustrate their energy consumption and actual voltage usage of total power, plug loads, lighting and occupancy as it is occurring. Users are equipped with a blueprint of their space. To measure performance, they simply set a zone/region from the blueprint on their computer, whether the entire building, a whole floor, a combination of rooms, or simply one office space. The application then creates easy-to-read graphs and/or tables that illustrate a measurement defined by the user such as how much energy (in kW hours) is being used in that space. Such tables and graphs can be called to view current status, a historical snapshot in time, or trending periods from minutes to years. These measurements can be used to compare energy usage to baselines such as ASHRAE, Title 24 or an energy benchmark modeled specifically for that building.
Occupancy Intelligence Enhances Real Estate Value
Energy Track also records the occupancy of any space equipped with an occupancy sensor. Facility managers can now see how often an area is being used, and for what duration. As usage patterns emerge, facility managers gain insight into what are the most and least productive places in a building.
Storch notes, "With this data in hand, building owners and operators can make strategic decisions about how to improve the real estate value of a working environment. Economic and environmental efficiency are both key components of that value."
Highlighting Savings in a Real-World Setting
Visitors to the Herman Miller booth at Greenbuild can experience the monitoring and tracking capabilities of Energy Track as reflected at a real-world installation: the USGBC's headquarters. The new headquarters, expected to achieve LEED Platinum status, was completed this past spring and features the Convia technology. From conference rooms and open areas to private offices and the kitchen, Convia seamlessly connects all areas of the 75,000-square-foot-space, addressing USGBC's need for functionality and energy management support, while providing flexibility to continuously commission the space and implement new and necessary changes.
About Convia, Inc.
Convia, Inc./A Herman Miller Company, seeks to advance energy management strategies and change the way people design, build, personalize and manage space. Founded in 2006 and headquartered in Buffalo Grove, Illinois, Convia offers an end-to-end level of control that enables a building to adapt to the evolving needs of the people and organizations who occupy it while helping facility managers broaden their energy goals. Through its partnership with Wiremold/Legrand, the leading provider of modular electrical distribution components, Convia Controls are imbedded into Wiremold's flexible electrical wiring systems to provide a control platform that fuels the adoption of flexible, sustainable spaces. Such platforms can ultimately reduce real estate and building operating costs while improving employee productivity. For more information about Convia, visit www.convia.com.