An Edinburgh based technology company has partnered with CSEM -a private, non-profit research company based in Switzerland – to develop an analytical platform to save energy, and increase equipment reliability in commercial buildings.
The £900,000 research project has been launched in Scotland by Net Things to develop breakthrough technology in the energy efficiency market.
The two-year project aims to save significant sums of money for governments, councils, schools and commercial properties. It seeks to do this through connected hardware and software that will both monitor and control energy usage and flagging up when specific plant and machinery requires servicing – thereby optimising efficiency of operation and reducing down time.
Net Things and CSEM have been awarded 50% funding towards the project from Eurostars, a joint programme between EUREKA and the European Commission. Eurostars awards funding to the development of rapidly marketable innovative products, processes and services that help improve the daily lives of people around the world.
Set up in 2007, Net Things is the creator of a widely used, independent energy-display device that monitors electricity, water and gas useage in homes and businesses in real-time.
Due to Net Things’ experience in the market over the past 10 years with current energy management systems, the developers claim the break-through technology can be commercialised at a price and footprint not previously attainable, and generate significant savings and fast returns on investment for companies globally.
In the UK alone there are a record 5.4 million private sector businesses. However, many of these properties have limited options for energy management with traditional Building Management Systems often only installed at construction stage due to cabling and instrumentation which is complex, time-consuming and disruptive to business.
One of the intended deliverables from the project is a system that will offer a low cost solution, easily retro-fitted, to the millions of buildings that are currently being neglected.
Serial TMT-sector manager George McGhee, Chief Executive, Net Things, said: “Technology is advancing globally to support sustainable and smarter cities, and our project will address some of the barriers that prevent viable solutions being retrofitted into established commercial properties.
“The EU has ambitious targets to meet by 2020, with energy efficiency initiatives expected to deliver 20% energy savings which is approximately the equivalent to turning off 400 power stations. Eliminating wasteful use of energy in commercial buildings that have lacked suitable systems is essential to driving sustainability on this sort of scale.
“By leveraging our technology expertise – coupled with CSEM’s 32 years of applied research experience – this project will result in more cost effect ways of addressing this challenge.”
Mario El-Khoury, CSEM Chief Executive, added: “SMEs are a central focus for our company, so this project is particularly close to my heart. Thanks to our expertise and our patents, we can offer solutions that will enable them to reduce their energy costs and contribute to improving their competitivity.”