We all know the Internet has vastly changed the worlds of commerce, communications and marketing. It is also transforming some of the most basic things we do, as well. As chips get smaller and yet more powerful at the same time, they can be embedded into more and more objects. This trend is called the Internet of Things. You’re probably asking, “What does that have to do with Air Conditioning?”
The Internet of Things tells our refrigerators what we need to buy the next time we go to the store. It lets the new Apple Watch take your pulse. It links your home security system to your smartphone. Now, it is transforming the way people interact with and use their air condition and heating systems, and is transforming the world of HVAC.
Several manufacturers have introduced smart thermostats, which control the temperature and conditions in a home or office. D and D Air is proud to offer several models that allow remote HVAC management, such as the Honeywell Vision Pro TH8321R, which make your home or office perfectly comfortable while also saving money by turning the AC unit down or off when no one is in the building.
A new application allows office workers to control the temperature, which reverses a trend which extends back generations. Office building owners usually reserve that power for themselves and their superintendents alone, and won’t let the employees so much as touch the thermostat. The IDO app changes that. Short for “Intelligent Dashboard for Occupants,” the app “provides a way for office employees to … actively oversee things like lighting and temperature from their smartphones,” according to Wired.com.
Companies like Siemens have been automating office HVAC for decades. But the app’s developers, Carnegie Mellon University’s Robert L. Preger Intelligent Workplace project, feel they’ve gone too far, and the systems are so complex they are actually starting to waste energy. The Intelligent Workplace team aims to fix this by providing tools that let occupants tweak and override the automation rules laid down by these systems. “With their smartphones, workers could turn the temperature down or up in an office or conference room, or switch off the lights in a conference room they’re not using,” according to Wired.
So far, so good. The pilot test of the system at PNC Bank found that PNC employees who used IDO to manage their energy used 38 percent less electricity overall than employees who could not control their energy usage.
Meanwhile, if you want to modernize your HVAC to save money and energy by getting more control, call D and D Air for a consultation at (239) 694-4849.