Products to Projects to Process: Convia's Energy Saving Strategies Come Full Circle at NeoCon 2009
June 07, 2009
Strengthened by its recent collaboration with Wiremold/Legrand, Convia, Inc./A Herman Miller Company is expanding its portfolio of forward-thinking building technologies and energy management solutions for the commercial building industry. The company will showcase its latest product developments, installations and research studies that are evolving energy conservation and efficiency at this year's NeoCon World's Trade Fair, June 15-17, in Chicago.
"With key influencers both in and beyond the architecture and design industry taking great strides to improve the efficiency of commercial buildings, and increasing amounts of federal money pouring into energy projects, there is rich market opportunity for solutions that manage and reduce energy consumption," said Randy Storch, president of Convia. "By joining forces with the Legrand sales team, we have an even greater ability to drive and capture these opportunities, while more wholly focusing on advancing energy management strategies for our commercial customers."
Last month, Convia's parent company Herman Miller announced a strategic alliance with Legrand, designed to broaden the reach of energy management strategies and fuel the adoption of more flexible, sustainable spaces. As part of the agreement, the Convia technology—which encompasses a facility's power delivery and other infrastructure and applications, including lighting, HVAC and occupancy and daylight harvesting sensors, into an energy efficient, easy-to-manage platform—is integrated into Wiremold wire and cable management systems (e.g. modular wiring systems, floor boxes, poke-thru devices and architectural columns) for a true end-to-end power application. In an industry first, the new enhanced "Convia-enabled Wiremold" systems add control and monitoring of office plug loads (the amount of energy drawn by devices from an electrical outlet) and lighting loads.
"For more than 100 years, customers in North America have relied on Wiremold advanced electrical distribution solutions," said Brian DiBella, vice president and general manager of Wiremold/Legrand. "By integrating the Convia technology into our systems, our customers will benefit from even greater flexibility and an enhanced system that allows for significant energy savings."
Tracking Progress toward Energy Management Goals
Leveraging the advanced plug load monitoring and control capabilities made possible through the alliance, Convia developed its new Energy Dashboard application, which will launch at NeoCon. Gone are the days of facility managers managing energy based on estimates of consumed energy use. With the new Energy Dashboard application, users are provided with real-time figures on energy consumption within a space, allowing them to measure, monitor and track savings instantaneously.
Powered through Convia's Global Gateway, the Energy Dashboard allows users to quickly create reports to 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 choose a zone/area from the blueprint on their computer. The application then creates easy-to-read graphs that illustrate how much energy (in kW hours) is being used in that space and allows users to compare that energy usage to baselines such as ASHRAE, Title 24 or an energy benchmark modeled specifically for that building. The application also can report carbon emissions, as well as measure occupancy levels (e.g. the time spent at the workstation vs. the time spent away). Such reports can be used as a basis for right-sizing real estate to reduce costs, and can help companies verify their progress on their road to sustainability.
USGBC: An "Office of the Future" in the Works
Visitors to the Herman Miller Showroom (3-321) at NeoCon can experience the real-time savings of Convia as it is happening—and reflected on the Energy Dashboard—at a real-world installation: the United States Green Building Council's (USGBC's) headquarters. The new headquarters, expected to achieve LEED Platinum status, was completed this spring and features 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.
Southern California Edison Helps Set the Standard
From the real world to the lab, new research studies focusing on energy savings strategies continue to demonstrate the benefit of energy management technologies in providing significant cost-savings and enhancing customers' social responsibility. In a recent study conducted by Southern California Edison (SCE), one of the largest electric utility companies in the United States, researchers found Convia saved 40 percent annualized energy when used in conjunction with overhead lighting fixtures, and more than 80 percent when used with task lights (e.g. LED lights) and motion sensors.
"The savings these technologies are already achieving in the commercial market—whether in completed installations or research studies—are showing the impact that technologies can have in meeting the needs of the people and organizations that occupy commercial buildings," adds Storch. "Our hope is that through these products and our alliance with Legrand, we can deliver the most flexible solution for energy efficiency in buildings."
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 Convia Controls, the company provides a control platform that fuels the adaption of flexible, sustainable spaces that can ultimately reduce real estate and building operating costs while improving employee productivity. For more information about Convia, visit www.convia.com.
The Legrand Group is the global specialist in products and systems for electrical installations and information networks where people live and work. Its comprehensive offering of solutions for use in commercial, industrial and residential markets makes it a benchmark for suppliers worldwide. Innovation for a steady flow of new products with high added value is a prime vector for growth. Backed by sound business and financial structures, Legrand is actively expanding its presence in fast-growing geographical zones and market segments that include lighting controls, energy savings and home automation, through a sustained stream of targeted, self-financed acquisitions and other initiatives. The Legrand Group employed 34,800 people around the globe and reported sales of 4.2 billion (Euros) in 2008. The company is listed on Euronext Paris and is a component stock of indexes including the SBF120, FTSE4Good and MSCI World (ISIN code FR0010307819). In 2000, Legrand acquired The Wiremold Company, headquartered in West Harford, Conn. Today, Wiremold/Legrand is the leader in wire and cable management systems, including modular wiring systems, metal and nonmetallic raceways, floor boxes, poke-thru devices and architectural columns.