Controlling energy consumption in a primary school in the Czech Republic: A total IoT solution using the Enectiva application and Enless Wireless sensors

This project in a primary school in the Czech Republic, managed by Enerfis and using Enless sensors, is a perfect example how to successfully monitor the energy consumption of a building. The two companies combined their expertise to create a comprehensive solution for the detailed monitoring and control of energy use. The Enless sensors installed by Enerfis collected data covering a range of measurements. First of all, the ambient air within the building was analysed with the aim of optimising the HVAC heating systems. In addition, electricity consumption was also monitored with the remote reading of electricity meters (central air handling apparatus for a swimming pool and gymnasium). The data collected by the Enless wireless sensors was sent directly to the Enectiva application developed by Enerfis. Significant energy and cost savings were immediately identified.

Contexte

In this primary school in the Czech town of Carlsbad, the task was to control the ambient temperature within its voluminous indoors spaces, as well as the existing mechanical ventilation system. The object of the project was thus to control the temperature within the school’s swimming pool area and the two sports halls in order to prevent excessive energy consumption.

The equipment

Three temperature transmitters were installed inside the rooms (1 per room). These were used to measure and record temperatures at 15-minute intervals in order to prevent overheating and guarantee effective ventilation.

Two ambient temperature transmitters and a temperature transmitter with integrated sensor and IP 65 housing were installed. These products use the M-Bus 169 MHz Wireless radio protocol. The data from these sensors was then automatically forwarded to a M-Bus 169MHz Wireless gateway for processing and display by the Enectiva application developed by Enerfis.

The aim of the project

In terms of the school’s swimming pool zone, the ambient temperature needs to be between 2 and 4 °C higher than that of the water. The purpose of the air conditioning system is to process the ambient air to maintain it at the correct temperature. If the swimming pool is not in use and not being heated (i.e., during school holidays or because of the covid-19 pandemic), the water and the air are cooler. The installation of a temperature sensor makes it possible to check that the parameters of the air conditioning system have been reinitialised.

The two sports halls were fitted with ambient temperature sensors in order to prevent excessive energy consumption. As part of an earlier overhaul air conditioning equipment was installed in the sports halls to automate the intake of fresh air. It was only after the installation of the air conditioning system that it was discovered that even if the heating was not on, the system automatically heated the space to 22°C. However, in application of Law 410/2005 Sb, the optimum temperature in Czech school sports halls must be a maximum of 20°C ± 2°C. The Enless sensors have now made it possible to regulate the heating during the night or when the facilities are closed. The air conditioning systems are now set to operate at the defined values.

 

Example Enectiva application notification

Results

The average interior temperature, before the installation of the remote monitoring solutions, was around 21.5°C in the sports halls. Following a change in the data to 20.4°C, Enectiva successfully reduced the annual heating degrees-days ratio.

For its calculations for the heating season in the Czech town of Carlsbad, Enerfis took into account a long-term average of 254 days and an average exterior temperature of 3.8°C.

Interior temperature prior to the installation of the remote monitoring systems

On the Enectiva application graph below, the blue curve represents the large sports hall and the green curve the smaller hall. The temperature in the sports hall reached 22°C between December 2019 and January 2020, resulting in excessive energy consumption.

Interior temperature after the installation of the remote monitoring system

Following the installation of the Enless sensors, the situation changed significantly. The spaces were no longer over-heated, and the temperature could be adjusted/reduced as needed. The graph also shows a falling away of the curves at the end of the graph which reflected the impact of the Covid-19 crisis. The swimming pool and the sports halls had to be closed in the spring, which resulted in a reduction in the use of the heating.

Josef Šrámek, Head of the Czech primary school, explains his satisfaction with the solution and says: “We are delighted with the installation of this new system and with the company that now manages the school’s energy consumption. We are now able to achieve a stable level of energy use within the optimal limits for a given building, and we can invest the money we save elsewhere.” He added: “As non-experts, we don’t have to worry about it. We are however notified if the situation somewhere deteriorates, and corrective measures are immediately suggested.”

“We carried out the installation for Enerfis in a Carlsbad primary school and everything was got ready by the manufacturer Enless Wireless. The wireless sensors delivered are very effective. Whenever we encountered issues in terms of the radio distance between the equipment, we were able to resolve the problem by adding another data receiver. As part of this project, we also installed 169MHz M-Bus Wireless pulse sensors”, explains Petr Pavlas from Erega.

The Enectiva application:

Enectiva is a fully automated online IoT and energy use management application. The solution enables companies and public sector bodies to reduce energy use and thus reduce their costs. The data is collected by the application through sensors in the buildings, the data is then displayed and processed to identify enduring solutions and to optimise energy use. The application is independent of the equipment and can operate with IoT devices on a range of technologies (M-Bus Wireless, Sigfox, LoRa). Enectiva is managed by the Czech company Enerfis.

Enerfis, a company based in Prague, has been working in new technologies and energy efficiency for 10 years. “We analyse the requests from our clients and propose specific innovative solutions for each company or public sector body. Our clients are located around the world, including Europe and South America. Our software, certification for buildings, energy use management, BMS and smart meters are the functionalities in greatest demand from our clients.”

The Enless Wireless / Enectiva partnership

The partnership between Enless Wireless and Enerctiva enables us to aggregate the hardware (Enless) and software (Enectiva) layers in order to deliver comprehensive and effective energy management solutions. Enectiva has been successfully using Enless sensors for more than 3 years. The latest LoRa (WAN) products from Enless have also been tested.

“As we demonstrated with this project, Enless equipment perfectly supplements the Enectiva software. We are very happy to have a commercial partner like Enless”, says Eva Svobodová, an Enectiva team member.

“We have been working with Enerfis and the Enectiva platform on 169 MHz Wireless M-Bus solutions since 2016 and we are delighted to have them as our partners in the Czech Republic as well as for other projects in Eastern Europe. Enerfis has proven knowledge of Enless products, and we hope this international partnership will continue as part of our export development strategy. Prospective deployments of our interior air quality transmitters are under consideration for projects in partnership with Enerfis.” Laurent Lasserre, Enless Wireless Sales Engineer.

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