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Enclosure solution for ‘Smart Building’

Modern day ‘Smart Buildings’ are capable of automating a host of building services such as heating, lighting, security and communications with the purpose of improving energy efficiency. Unfortunately, when a Building Management System (BMS) is installed poorly, reliability issues can quickly eliminate any savings. 

When it became apparent that the BMS at the innovative Think Tank building in Lincoln needed to be replaced, SG Controls and Integration was approached to provide a support. The SGCI solution was able to make dramatic improvements to the efficiency of the building, thanks in part to Spelsberg’s modular AK distribution enclosures.

The Think Tank building is based within the campus of Lincoln University. A flagship building within the city, its purpose is to offer a hi-tech facility for budding start-ups originating from the university itself or from the surrounding areas. The building has a modern design and was originally built with a completely automated management system to reduce its carbon footprint and offer resident businesses the very best in terms of comfort, network speeds and conferencing opportunities.

While the building itself has been a great commercial success since it first opened its doors, it soon became apparent the original BMS was not suitable for the task required of it. This led to numerous operational issues within the building and unexpectedly high energy usage. Aware of the issues, the building’s managers approached SG Controls, leading specialists in integrated building automation installation, to offer a solution.

The building is high-tech, well designed and the perfect location for any modern start-up business to grow. The incumbent BMS simply didn’t do the building justice, so it was clear that the most efficient solution in the long term would be to remove the hardware and wiring and start again.

The University agreed, but the building had to remain open while they carried out the work, so they had to specify hardware that would allow the building to be rewired one system at a time.

SG Controls specified a range of products from Loytec, that are din-rail mounted, with modular capability, making it possible to build the system up as the incumbent BMS was uninstalled bit-by-bit. To keep the wiring tidy and cost efficient, it was deemed best that distribution panels be used to house the controllers, I/O modules, gateways and routers. A modular solution was favoured to allow the installers to add sub-panels as the project progressed.

As part of the installation project, many of the panels had to be installed in areas that were classified as ‘wet plant rooms’ – mounted near water cylinders and pipes. Where other solutions may have required an additional cabinet housing to meet building standards, the AK range has a standard IP65 rating making them suitable for installation in such areas without any extra expense. Additionally, the high quality finish of the units enhances the overall aesthetic of the range; an important consideration for a building known as much for its style as its functionality.

Spelsberg’s company philosophy is based around the idea of providing flexibility and freedom to its customers. The space provided within each junction box; the large distribution and warehousing space; and the freedom to customise almost any product, irrespective of quantity, all equates to “Space for you”.

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