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Electronic Design

Wireless Management Unit Slashes Energy Bill

A ZigBee-based energy-management system, called Link2Web, has been successfully deployed at an industrial facility in Sweden, reducing the facility’s energy costs by 37% over the course of one year. The announcement was made by MeshNetics, a provider of ZigBee modules and embedded software, and BFM AB, an energy-management company, at the Light and Building exhibition in Frankfurt, Germany.

Link2Web features multiple wireless sensors and control devices that are connected into a self-healing, multi-hop mesh network capable of rerouting a signal if line-of-sight (LOS) is blocked. The ZigBee wireless connectivity is enabled by MeshNetics’ ZigBit rf modules. Every 10 minutes, all data collected by the ZigBit modules are sent to the Web server, which in turn channels the values over the Internet to a SQL database.

Operators connect to the database to read and change values, allowing efficient management of the facility’s energy usage. Each time the Web server connects to the database, changed values are read and sent back to the local ZigBit-based controllers. A wireless module in the facility uses this information—including data referencing both outside temperature and inside temperature—to precisely control the radiator temperature.

The building has a heated area of 3600 m2 “Energy-management wireless sensor networks such as the ZigBit module-based solution we implemented reflect the tremendous value these networks offer in terms of energy conservation and bottom-line benefits for building owners across any and all industries,” said Richard Hänsel, CEO of BFM AB. “Working with MeshNetics allowed us to stay focused on our core competency while reaping all the benefits of ZigBee wireless technology. We look forward to continuing to use MeshNetics’ industry-leading rf modules in our future solutions.”


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