How combining technologies can take a huge bite out of your cooling costs

Thu, 2016-08-25 12:30 -- SCC Staff

In the U.S., the buildings sector accounts for about 40% of electricity consumed. The percentage is much higher in the Persian Gulf states during the hottest months. While your city may not experience that level of intense long-term heat, many regions in the country and elsewhere in the world are breaking high temperature records. The technology solution from Council Associate Partner Siemens described in the press release below — or rather the combination of technology solutions — may give you some ideas to help reduce your cooling-related energy costs. — Doug Peeples

Siemens: Smart building tech can cut GCC's cooling bill by 40%

As the Middle East region faces soaring temperatures during summer months, Siemens has proved that by implementing two key technologies for building management and district cooling, the amount of energy required for cooling can be reduced by up to 40 percent.

As Solar Impulse 2 gets ready to leave Cairo on the final leg of its journey to Abu Dhabi, Siemens - a digital technology provider to the record-breaking project - congratulates the pilots and team on what will be the first circumnavigation of the world in a solar-powered aircraft.

“Cooling is considered to be responsible for approximately 70 percent of the GCC’s electricity demand during peak summer months, so it’s extremely important that we evaluate the entire cooling chain to identify where technology can generate savings,” said Koen Bogers, Senior Executive Vice President, Building Technologies Division, Siemens Middle East. “Digital technologies have huge potential to make our cities more sustainable, and we have proved it is possible to almost halve the energy used for cooling by applying two technologies to the supply and demand sides.”

Siemens Demand Flow technology uses specialized algorithms to optimize the entire chilled water system of a cooling plant, delivering energy savings of between 15 and 30 percent. By simplifying operations, increasing the cooling capacity and improving efficiency, the system is able to reduce flow in periods of lesser demand, lowering operation and maintenance costs and significantly lowering energy use. The system is already in place at the iconic WAFI Mall in Dubai.

The second technology, Desigo CC, is a building management platform which reduces energy usage by controlling and optimizing a building’s systems, including ventilation, air conditioning, lighting, shading, fire safety and security services. The impact on a typical building is a saving of between 10 and 25 percent of the energy required for cooling. Earlier versions of the Desigo building management platform have been implemented in numerous buildings across the Middle East, including Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi, Qatar’s Tornado Tower, the Atlantis Hotel in Dubai and Siemens’ own regional headquarters in Abu Dhabi’s Masdar City.

“Cooling amounts to some 70 percent of an average building’s electricity bill in the GCC, and aside from the clear environmental benefits there is also a very strong business case for these types of technology,” says Bogers. “For example, at Dubai’s WAFI Mall our Demand Flow solution achieved a 30 percent saving on utility costs in its first year, representing an annual cost saving of some $439,000 with a guaranteed payback period of two-and-a-half years.”

Siemens Building Technologies Division is the world market leader for safe, energy efficient and environmentally friendly buildings and infrastructure. It offers products, solutions and services that optimize the energy costs, reliability, comfort and performance of buildings while meeting ecological and sustainability requirements. As a technology partner, consultant, service provider, system integrator and product supplier, Siemens offers fire safety, security, building automation, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) as well as energy management products and services.

For more on energy...
Since energy plays such a large role in almost every aspect of a city, it's likely already part of your smart city strategy. Take a look at the Smart Cities Readiness Guide's Energy chapter to learn about ICT's role in smart energy, planning and deploying smart energy systems and deployment.

Doug Peeples is a Portland, Oregon-based writer specializing in technology and energy. Follow @smartccouncil on Twitter.