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Featured Video - Trend Control Systems - 7th March 2013

Trend Energy Manager Enables Trend BEMS Users To Save More

The NEW Trend Energy Manager Video

Trend Control Systems has developed a web-based energy management package for users of its building energy management systems (BEMS). Called Trend Energy Manager, it is a powerful tool for highlighting and investigating energy waste within a building. Importantly, it is available through Trend’s extensive network of value added resellers (VARs), who will supply it for installation on the customer’s own server. It can also be hosted on an end-user’s behalf by Trend’s Energy Support and Solutions Team.

Trend Energy Manager enables energy and facilities managers to keep a close eye on the gas and electricity consumed by their building services and its effect on their organisation’s carbon footprint. Meter readings and other variables logged by and automatically uploaded from the Trend BEMS provide its main source of data. Based on Trend’s pioneering iMAT M&T software, the new package can provide rapid, automatic reporting of incidences of energy overuse and can even be configured to suggest probable causes.

Because Trend Energy Manager can be scaled to suit the size of application it is a viable proposition for relatively small single buildings as well as large campuses and nationwide estates. As a web-based package it can be accessed by authorised users from virtually any location, via the Internet or an organisation’s intranet.

Trend Energy Manager comes on a CD with its own installation program and requires no knowledge of programming or databases to set up. Once connected it will browse the BEMS and produce a list of system meters/sensors from which the data collection points can be selected. The maximum number of data points will usually depend on which one of four standard versions of the software – 50, 100, 250 or 500pts - has been purchased from the VAR. However, larger applications can easily be accommodated and there is effectively no limit on the number of points when the software is hosted by Trend.

A variety of information will generally need to be entered as part of the set-up process, such as utility tariffs (primary, secondary and day/night values can be input), CO2 ratings and cost and consumption targets. Normalisation criteria would also have to be specified to allow comparisons between different areas within a building or different buildings – or to benchmark consumption against, say, a government target. This would commonly be a measure such as floor square footage, though it could be a variable like building footfall (for a shopping centre) or room occupancy levels (a hotel). Degree day data can be called up and entered – or calculated by the software using outside air temperature measurements - to allow for differences in weather conditions when comparing the current year’s energy consumption with that of a previous year.

Readings from meters that are not connected to the BEMS can be imported into Trend Energy Manager in CSV file format (provided by the utility supplier) or simply entered manually. It is also possible to import historic data recorded on a ‘963’ supervisor – which is the main operator interface on most Trend BEMS.

Daily energy usage profiles can be created to enable comparison of actual and expected consumption. If the former exceeds the latter by a preset amount an e-mail report can be automatically generated and dispatched the next day. This permits rapid diagnosis and rectification of any problems, thereby limiting energy waste.

Trend Energy Manager allows data to be manipulated and combined in a variety of ways and presents it in simple to understand graphical and tabular formats. Navigation between screen pages is very straightforward, as is drilling down into the detail or displaying an overall view.

For example, the user might choose to look at a graph of minimum, average and maximum electricity usage in a particular area over a given period, or view a report showing the total energy consumption, cost and CO2 emissions for every building on an estate. Up to four plots can be overlaid on a single graph, a facility that might be used, say, to contrast energy usage on a specific day of the week over the course of a month. Moreover, consumption plots can be overlaid on other BEMS logged data – like boiler or chiller flow temperatures – to help determine the cause of excessive energy use.

The software also incorporates tools that take degree day and energy consumption data and generate energy performance and CUSUM graphs. These are very useful for revealing trends in performance, as well as showing the effect of changes to a building or its HVAC plant and the impact of energy saving measures. In addition, they furnish the information needed to set energy budgets. Consumption can also be graphed against outside air temperature.

If end-users simply do not have the time to set up the system themselves, part or all of this work can be done by the Trend VAR that supplied it. Where Trend is hosting it for the customer, then set up and operation are entirely carried out by the company’s Energy Support and Solutions Team.

Additional Information Relating to Trend Control Systems

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