IoT

Greg Fasullo: Empowering Multi-Site Owners & Operators Through Technology

Entouch.001.jpeg

By elevating the level of transparency within a portfolio of mixed assets, owners and operators can use actionable insights to improve the performance of their portfolio. WATCH to learn more.


VIEW PRESENTATION:


 
greg.jpeg

Greg Fasullo, CEO, ENTOUCH

WEBSITE | TWITTER | LINKEDIN

 

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:

Good afternoon everybody, my name is Greg Fusillo, I am the CEO of Entouch.  Entouch is a smart building automation platform currently focusing on the large number of multi side distributed facilities, portfolios are not large centralized buildings and what we view that we do is we enable the promise of smart energy technology in facilities that they are mostly left behind by smart building tech and the infrastructure. 

In particular our clients are either operators or tenants in these facilities. They could be the landlord as well. What we enable to do is connect the building take data and enables sustained reductions on energy maintenance and capital expenditure. I'll focus a little bit on energy to Star because energy is a great opportunity. You hear the speeches here. There are significant opportunities to address energy efficiency in buildings with relatively modest capital investments and process investments and very large returns.  So we all know there is about 6 million commercial buildings in the US, about 90 billion square footage. 

Those buildings use a lot of energy. I actually put this slide together 7 quadrillion BTU’s. I don't even know how many zeros you had to put on an excel spreadsheet to calculate what a quadrillion was I had to look it up. About 1.2 trillion kilowatt hours of electricity which again big number. How big is that?  the equivalency in coal fired power plants 360 coal fired power plants are required to power all the commercial buildings in the US today there are only 359 of those plants in existence. 

So essentially at buildings we're 100 percent efficient. We can eliminate all of the coal usage in the United States, a fairly audacious goal.  On top of that, if you look at EIA government estimates, a large portion of energy and buildings is actually just wasted. Wasted due to inefficiencies, its wasted due to lack of people and processes in those buildings. While we hear a lot about smart building technology, the building to connect the assets in a facility, the climate control the lighting to use database on occupancy to drive changes in behavior in the buildings and optimize energy efficiency, the rally is electricity consumption in buildings is actually going up. 

So why is that. If we've got all these great technologies if they have fantastic ROI’s why are we having issues where energy efficiency is not catching up with buildings. And the dirty secret is, most of these smart building technologies are designed for facilities teams they're designed for organizations that have people on the ground, that have people and process to drive change. They're not designed for the majority of buildings that do not have onsite facilities. 


Those organizations are distributed typically geographically they're centralized from a small corporate facilities team but they simply lack the people, the processes and the priority to focus on energy efficiency at the regional. 

Now we think of buildings we think of large buildings like the one we’re in.  Typical class A building here where there's a hotel or it's an office very large square footage, buildings with significant infrastructure, but the reality is that it's just a small portion of commercial buildings. Most commercial buildings are actually small less than 1% of buildings by building count are greater than 200,000 square feet that only represents 20,000 or 20%  of the available square footage and buildings. What are these smaller buildings?

Well their buildings and services that you know well.  They are retail stores they are restaurants they are health and fitness chains there are financial services the small facilities that are distributed geographically that have very unique pain points very unique operational priorities from a large building that has onsite facilities and can be operated in a different way with a smart building technology platform. Many of these organizations do not have the onsite facility, they've got a remote team. If it's a thousand location enterprise a health and fitness chain you do have people in corporate who are thinking about energy efficiency. They're thinking about investments in technology but locally they rely on essentially maintenance people. 

Occasionally you'll have regional tech or a facility person. But the people are thinking about energy and efficiency are not on at the buildings. In addition there is a trend to rely on outsourced services. You may have an onsite maintenance tech you probably rely on somebody that provides IFM to actually do the work in your facilities. So an organization in charge of keeping the lights on and keeping that facility running. But the line item that they touch on maintenance is a very different line item for a strategic item like energy. So they're fundamentally dis aligned with an incentive to reduce energy consumption. 

Then you rely on the manager so the P&L typically rolls up to the regional manager or the local manager the store manager, that individual to some degree, has visibility to energy inefficiency because in their P&L they have much bigger priorities running the organization dealing with staffing and the top line issues at that location. 


To put that in perspective a Navigant study multi site operators in 2016 essentially talking to folks and these people have building automation systems they've got a range of technologies roughly a quarter felt that they had a smart building technology strategy for their organization. So even though they've adopted a building automation system or a BMS or an energy management system the past their disconnected assets and they really didn't feel they had a connected smart building technology strategy. 

Sixty percent were aware of the pain point they're aware of energy they're aware of sustainability challenges they are looking to do better and operate more efficiently.  They're just now starting to evaluate what they want to purchase. And over half of them, when they're surveyed will tell you, they'd actually like to outsource this in the service. So what they're telling you is they also realize we have other priorities as we're outsourcing non core services energy management optimization of our energy footprint probably something we're not the best at and we're looking at providers that can do that for us as a service. 

That's where Entouch comes in. What do you have to do to solve this problem? Well at heart it's not a technology, it's not a hardware, it's not a systems level problem. It's a holistic software and services problem. The buildings may or may not have a connected system. You need to deploy some way of connecting and access and those are the equipment in those facilities. The buildings when they're connected you've got a commission. So if you connect the system is built you've got to know the various conference rooms you've got to know where occupants are. 

You have to know how that building is supposed to occupy. Think about doing that over a suite of outpatient health care clinics that are all different in size of different assets on the roof have different operating hours in different parts of the country. How do you deploy at very low cost very high quality has to be done with software. Now it connected that building and I've got this firehose of data and all is great information coming in. I can figure email alerts on every time there's a problem. The next thing I know is I my email box is filling up. I turn off the alerts. There's got to be a process that you can take that data coming in. You can analyze it and you can quickly enable support for the ongoing operation of the site.

It has to be integrated. So I've got a services provider I've got an IFM provider. They are the boots on the ground they've got the work order system seeing the mess that I use. Any new solution cannot be a point solution that requires additional work, to extract value it has to be integrated with the existing workflow. That's probably the most important point on this slide. Most legacy systems were independent point solutions. They were not integrated. They were not open and essentially people have deployed these systems and they're a little bit stuck. How do I extract value out of what I've already invested. 

They're very basic users has gotten very easy to use and then ultimately to effect change in these distributed facilities. You don't have a facility team that can optimize HVAC temperatures or do maintenance initiatives to try to improve the efficiency of the rooftop that the systems have to be autonomous to be able to adjust. They've got a watch. They've got a rack based on user behavior and ultimately affect the change to drive real change. 


Entouch does this through a software platform today, we've got about fifty thousand of our systems deployed in the US leading multi site operators.  We start with the ability to deploy and commission. We are a software platform so this third party tech shows up on site, he's got the Entouch app on his mobile device. You can install our platform. He can connect with existing assets and then we can remotely commission that design. Now we've got a high quality installation and we're collecting data. We're streaming it to the cloud. We start doing things with it. So we collect that data we analyze that data. We apply machine learning. We help you optimize the operation of the building autonomously. And now as a facility individual you move from having no intelligence of what's going on and having real time data and the reactive tasks that are associated data. 


We've integrated with your third party services provider and ultimately you can take this organization. You can start pulling the young in you can start feeling figuring out opportunities to optimize and continuously improve. So what we enable in organizations that traditionally were reactive there are maintenance and support they're keeping the lights on of these facilities but they don't fundamentally have the ability to optimize to transform that facility organization into one that can be strategic that could be thinking long term and frankly could be pulling levers to optimize and reduce energy in those facilities. 


So in addition to the operational benefits most of our customers are the facility organization and corporate they love the fact that now they've got an automated enterprise ultimately the business case is driven by energy because that is a large line item this year. Our average customer today saves about 13 percent on their energy bill. Not bad. It's about two hundred million kilowatt hours and over 4000 tons of carbon that we are saving today on an annual basis across our clients. And what they really like because that's equivalent to about 20 million dollars a year of economics. 

So that's Entouch. We enable and frankly we deliver on the promise of smart dollar technology and multi site organizations. Great. Thank you very much for your time. 



David Unger: Full Transparency through IoT

fullsizeoutput_149a.jpeg

From the edge, through the fog and into the clouds - a deep dive into the core components of IoT in commercial real estate today. David Unger, CEO of Sentient Buildings helps navigate current pain points in IoT and cloud infrastructure as well as how technology is bringing forth new solutions.


VIEW PRESENTATION:


 
Dave_Unger_Headshot.jpg

David Unger, CEO, Sentient Buildings

WEBSITE | TWITTER | LINKEDIN

 

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:


Good afternoon everybody, My name is David Unger. I'm the CEO of Sentient Buildings. Sentient Buildings is a wireless IoT device infrastructure company where we integrate wireless devices to traditional BMS systems, platforms and we bring all of that data up to the cloud securely and reliably. 

So my presentation today is going to be on creating full transparency in buildings through IoT technologies in the subtitle - from the edge through the fog and into the clouds. 

How do you get full transparency of your data in/and controlling that data from the cloud back down to the edge.  So you're just looking at how we put these pieces together, what are the core components of an IoT network or design? You have the cloud the cloud's where you know the data is going to ultimately be pushed too, you have your subject here in the middle, the building, the edge is your edge device network. 

So how does that network function?  How are you getting data from the very edges of your building and not just from your central plant systems or from air handlers or from other operational technologies in the building? How do you get into the tenant spaces and collect data on temperature, humidity or how do you control individual terminal units in apartments and other things?

How do you get bi-directional with monitoring and control to the edge? then the fire concept here is all about distributing that computing power, right. So how do you distribute your computing power between the cloud and the edge?

How do you maintain it, manage your security, how do you maintain data across all systems across both the cloud and the edge? So there is talk about how those pieces get put together but let's just talk about some of the traditional kinds of problems that we try to solve for building owners and operators. The first one is wires. Wires are very constraining in buildings, in wired systems and wiring up sensor data and wiring up devices and control points. It becomes expensive to maintain those systems and you don't typically deploy to the edge in a way that makes sense for the building. Wired is a mass infrastructure, it's expensive to install maintain upgrade and extend. 

What we find is while you could potentially control every tack in a building, every electric baseboard heater in a building while you could do these things they're not economical or feasible in old construction or in retrofit projects. Paybacks for the owners to deploy to the edge are too long for them to even consider.  

What we really look at is how to achieve this full visibility and do it reliably with wireless. Wireless technologies typically in a lot of ways, is unreliable. It might be okay to monitor a temperature sensor but if you're controlling somebody pee tac unit or if you're doing something that needs to be done reliably and consistently you know you can't be subject to wireless interference or other problems that might arise with wireless device networks. 

So the way we look at this is we've divided wireless networks into two typologies. We look at the Star Network as having a central hub right that can coordinate and monitor devices that communicate directly to it. That Star Network provides basically a local area or a personal area wireless network within its face. 

So within a specific space it could be an apartment could be an office space but you have this local area wireless network and you could actually deploy on this network because it's now very short range. When I say short range I mean like 30 to 40 feet. 

If you could deploy low to no power and end nodes at the edge that can be powered by ambient light can be powered by kinetic energy so you don't even have to put batteries in those devices and it could be as simple as peeling and sticking something on a wall like a thermostat and getting readings back to your hub. The mesh comes in where these hubs act as repeaters on a mesh. 

So you have your star network at each node and each hub becomes a repeater in there you form a building wide area network where all the mesh nodes communicate with one another and they report back to a central gateway or central system in the building and that way you achieve full reliable coverage across the entire site. 


Once you have the wireless network in place, what you can do with it? What kind of devices can you deploy and you could deploy these devices very cost effectively, temperature sensors actuators  hours occupancy sensors energy meters and you could deploy them without having to run power or communication wiring to them. So it becomes a very inexpensive deployment and not only that it becomes reliable in terms of wireless range and communication. 

Now you're bringing all of the wireless data back to a central point. That's great. But now what typically happens is the data still remain separate from existing building management systems. Wireless IoT data should be simply extending existing BMS platforms. They should not be their own platform or their own system. The latest IoT device networks are typically proprietary. You have to use some specific kind of sensor, they might have their own portal platform or their own local client to access the system. So you want to basically build a platform that allows for extension of this IoT device system so that it can be used by other systems in the building.

The other thing that happens across multiple systems is your data definitions are not in sync. They're not homogenized. They're not normalized. The way that you define your data is different across multiple systems so you need a simple way to bring all that data definitions together so that they're defined correctly across all your platforms so that you can identify systems and platforms consistently to perform analytics, to run alarming and create issues across the system. 

It's very important to get that straightened out. Where  these edge to fog gateways that bridge the divide fit in is, you create this fully secure VPN network to your cloud. So now you've secured your network of all this data. You have integration of your IoT receivers into that network and then you also create onsite data storage and edge computing power through a central fog gateway.  

Now both the wireless network and the IoT device network can communicate to the other building systems and the same goes for the building systems that were traditionally not connected to these device networks. 

Then pushing that data right up to the cloud so you have your IoT systems and you have traditional BMS platforms all coming together in a central system. 


There are many cloud platforms that are out there, you know performing analytics against the data or providing other services against the data,  it becomes a problem because you still don't get a comprehensive view of operations. Many users have to log into multiple systems in order to evaluate and analyze their data. So really what's needed is a central system to aggregate the data at scale with a suite of API eyes to these external systems in the cloud. 

There needs to be the single pane of glass where the data exists in the cloud and is moderated and controlled in the cloud. Then you have integration so all the other systems that you might need to retrieve data from provide a standard compliant data integration platform with a single pane glass view into that system and then you integrate the value chain of all of these other providers in the cloud. 

Eventually what you'll get is a method of setting the stage for full integration and collaboration across all cloud platforms so that you can easily share data across systems,  distribute data to your engineering and energy consulting firm so that they can evaluate that data and help the building owner make decisions on capital projects, for example the tenants and residents can gain access to their thermostats easily. 

The owner operator could grant access to the thermostat without them having to put their own nest device in or some other type of Wi-Fi device hvac service companies could gain access to enact this. This access control system where data is shared so that they can evaluate problems with your air handler or your boiler plant or your chiller plant.  You get full transparency all the way down to the device level and now you're providing full transparency to all the collaborators who actually need access. 

If they had access they can provide better services to the building, so what is this roadmap to transparency look like?  wireless start a mesh remote control nodes that connect seamlessly to existing building systems. So really designing your wireless IoT device network so that it’s standardized and compliant with existing systems. You want to support standard compliant edge devices while maintaining this from robust backhaul. You want to eliminate the need going forward for power communication wiring. 

We recently did a project in a 2 million square foot building where you can put a device now anywhere in that building, a sensor, thermostat, any control point, you can just place the device in the building and it will come up on the network and be visible in the cloud. So that really allows complete flexibility. The types of sensors that you use and you could use at much lower costs than was traditionally available and then really getting this open protocol cloud platform that's able to not only receive the data from the building systems but also fully integrate with all other cloud based platforms for a fully robust platform in the cloud that has multiple data sources and can really give you a single glass pane into the view of operations.