The United States Army National Guard (ARNG) manages over 170 million square feet of built environment, spanning all fifty states, three U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia. The utility and operational data generated by such a massive bootprint is enormous. The task of managing and making effective use of these data is equally enormous—a task made more difficult by the fact that data are generated by and stored in disparate systems of varying sophistication. Without a unified system to automatically collect, analyze, and present these data in a meaningful way, ARNG energy managers and facility managers are left with the herculean task of doing this manually and across multiple systems. Through an open, cloud-based analytics platform, ARNG can greatly enhance their ability to make tactical and strategic decisions, as well as identify emergent and critical issues in real time, saving energy and maintenance costs and improving overall operational efficiency.
The objective of this project is to demonstrate the ability of modern, cloud-based software to improve access to and the quality of facility-related data in a cost-effective and scalable fashion, while also offering new services. Switch Automation will work with ARNG to collect and aggregate disparate sources of information into a single platform and offer new services, including: advanced analytics and reporting, Automated Fault Detection and Diagnostics (AFDD), local and remote control of building systems via multiple applications—including mobile, and improved demand management. This will ultimately save on energy and maintenance costs and improve the efficiency of facility managers and maintenance staff.
The technical objectives of this demonstration project are broken out into three categories, detailed below:
Scalability: demonstrate Switch Automation’s ability to integrate different data from multiple systems and configure the data feed to eliminate manual processing and reduce the time to integrate new data points and data sources.
Enhance Existing Processes:
- Advanced Analytics: demonstrate the platform’s ability to build robust analytics on top of the data to provide appropriately normalized, real-time analysis of the data collected.
- Improved Reporting: demonstrate the platform’s ability to build customizable reports, to accommodate the needs of all users in the chain of command.
- AFDD: demonstrate the potential for customizable, rule-based AFDD to deliver savings through real-time system monitoring, optimized site operations, and monitoring-based commissioning (MBCx) to effectively conserve energy.
- Control: demonstrate Switch’s ability to securely control systems remotely; and the ability to use this functionality for sophisticated demand-management services.
Tools like the Switch Platform offer multiple benefits to facility management. Operational optimization results in quantifiable reductions in energy consumption and equipment runtime, saving 10 – 15% in energy costs and 8 – 10% in maintenance costs. There are other benefits to occupant comfort and productivity that are harder to quantify, but which are significant.