enVision Buildings – 360° Building Intelligence by nutz

In the second part of our interview series, Meik Spiegel gives us new insights into the M8 Work and Create project. He explains in more detail, the added value for all parties involved in the project.

Mr Spiegel, you are currently in charge of M8 Work & Create in Munich East and will soon be in charge of other projects as Head of Building Automation at Nutz GmbH. You started your career with an apprenticeship as an electrician and have worked for many years in the industry as a maintenance technician. How did you get into building automation?

Today I look back on 25 years of experience and fascination with building automation. Even during my time at Imperial, a premium manufacturer of built-in kitchen appliances and today a wholly-owned subsidiary of its parent company Miele, I see that the spark was ignited. We built a showroom for our customers where we wanted to display our products in the best way possible with spotlights and special lighting. Normally, you would have to pull a cable from each individual switch to the light, and finally label everything in order to have a clear picture. I figured, there has to be an easier way to do this. And so I began to explore so-called bus technologies. At that time I started with the EIB (European Installation Bus), now better known as KNX, and I was thrilled. We were able to create lighting scenarios and even control the temperature using centrally placed sensors and touch panels. As a result, we progressively implemented this technology company-wide.

The advantages were remarkable, we had less installation work and saved the cost of wasted energy.

Afterwards, driven by my passion for room and system automation, I took the initiative to become a KNX instructor. Over time, I gradually became involved with other bus technologies in factory and building automation and so my enthusiasm for this control technology brought me to nutz four years ago.

 

The M8 in Munich’s Werksviertel district will be one of the most intelligent buildings in Germany. What do you find particularly appealing about this project?

The exciting and challenging thing about the M8 is to integrate the brand new O3 series from DeltaControls` portfolio. The flagship of this series is the so-called O3 sensor hub, an all-in-one sensor. This sensor is part of an ultra-modern system that learns from the behaviour of the user. By using many sensors of different technologies in one housing, it records all the parameters of a room in order to provide the user with an optimum feel-good atmosphere. And we are one of the first specialist installers worldwide to install and commission these new sensors.

It is also the first project of its kind for nutz and all its in-house departments, electrical engineering, security technology and building automation, to have to work closely together. Imagine that electrical engineering gives a building its nerve tracts, security technology equips it with the necessary protective mechanisms and we, the building automation department, breathe life into the building to make it think and act independently.

The M8 construction project, has the enormous advantage that all the components of the heating, plumbing, air conditioning, ventilation and electrical engineering trades are networked with one another, thus integrating the technical building services into a homogeneous unit. The whole system speaks one language and for those who are interested: In the M8 the native language is BACnet/IP!

Building Automation revolutionises not only building engineering but also working life without making it unnecessarily complicated. Because in the end the operation is simple.

With the BACnet field bus protocol and the sophisticated components of our partner DeltaControls, we have brought all the disciplines together under one roof and met the very individual needs of tenants, users, operators and investors.

 

Tenants, users, operators and investors, it seems to me that it is no easy task to meet such a variety of needs with just one system. How exactly do you do that?

For investors today it is of course important that their property is attractive and perhaps more importantly that it remains so. There are therefore various criteria of a building that give it value and attractiveness, while tenants and users have also become more critical about the environment and sustainability, which we very much welcome. Of course, the amortization plays an important role for investors and the possibility to have an overview of data from several buildings at the same time. Building automation enables sustainable property management with regard to economy, ecology and social issues. Energy costs are minimized, natural resources are conserved and people work in a healthier and more pleasant environment. Certification standards are met and amortization is increased through low ancillary costs.

The operators, including facility management companies, also benefit from so-called ‘multi-site management’. The focus of their needs however, is usually on managing sub-service providers, maintenance and repair orders. We prepare the data in simple graphics and these are available around the clock in real time. For example, a facility management company can tell which rooms have not been used or hardly been used during the week, thus enabling them to determine exactly which rooms he must be assigned for cleaning by their service provider and which not.

Building automation offers tenants the ‘open desk principle’ which is very easy to introduce and implement. You always have an overview of energy costs, energy consumption and parameter deviations in real time. It enables rapid intervention and uncovers true energy guzzlers. This not only makes the tenants happy and satisfied, but also the users. A harmonious room climate; perfectly adapted lighting conditions and an optimum supply of fresh air create conditions that enable efficient and concentrated work. Those of us in the field of building automation speak of “optimum comfort” when it comes to this individual adjustment of the above-mentioned parameters.

 

As you can see, building automation is the future of real estate management, which is based on the effortless satisfaction of individual needs whilst protecting our environment.