Buddy Platform announced Monday a simple, complete and low cost solution for monitoring the consumption of electricity, gas, water, steam and solar power generation, called Buddy Ohm. The new product helps accurately measure the consumption of these resources in buildings, government facilities, and public infrastructure, helping managers, occupants and citizens get a clearer view of the financial and environmental cost of these facilities.
Currently available, Buddy Ohm is an end-to-end system from Buddy Platform designed to help current and future smart city projects get started faster, with the flexibility to integrate a client’s existing and future systems as they come online.
Buddy Ohm is a full monitoring solution comprised of Internet of Things (IoT) class hardware, secure and scalable data infrastructure, an operations portal, engaging occupant facing dashboards, and on-the-go mobile experiences. Leveraging the power of the IoT, Buddy Ohm makes it easy and affordable to extract data from city and building systems in real-time, which is then processed by the company’s data infrastructure service, The Buddy Platform.
Buddy Ohm was designed to be flexible, measuring electricity from the grid, gas, steam, solar and water across many applications. But Buddy also sees great potential in using the system to make buildings more efficient. Buildings represent the vast majority of resource consumption in cities, so optimizing the way they are used can have a big impact on the carbon footprint.
While there are a variety of expensive and complex systems available today for managing everything from elevators to HVAC, they are typically siloed and built specifically for the building engineer or operator. Often these expensive systems force operators to optimize their resource consumption using only historical data, which mean critical events that can negatively impact resource consumption are missed.
Also, for buildings that lack a traditional building management system (BMS) due to age or budgets, simple and straightforward monitoring using Buddy Ohm can help realize efficiencies and savings they might not otherwise have access to.
While these large systems are important, what they lack is an inexpensive, easy to install and intuitive solution for exposing real-time resource data for building occupants. Complex building infrastructure can be optimized to a certain point, but without the participation of the people living and working in these buildings, the next level of savings and conservation may never be reached.
Buddy Ohm also provides a complimentary front-end experience for the traditional BMS by providing engaging, modern and modular dashboards that over time help people develop a deeper understanding of the link between their actions and resource conservation.
By utilizing open hardware and software protocols, customers don’t have to worry about vendor lock-in with Ohm, they will always have full access and control of their resource data. The Ohm base unit is installed in proximity to meters or sub meters, and utilizes industry standard connectors to monitor electricity, solar, water, steam, gas and other natural and built environment elements.
Ohm can wirelessly connect to other sensors, allowing for a network of sensors across city and building landscapes. Ohm connects directly to The Buddy Platform via the cellular network, eliminating troublesome WiFi environments and reducing lapses in connectivity. This capability also means Ohm can be deployed in places where connectivity is a challenge.
Infinitely flexible, the Buddy Platform connects a constellation of devices to translate raw data into valuable insight. This scalable and secure platform is the heart of Buddy Ohm – enabling the processing, streaming and storing of key resource data, with powerful real time capabilities like a rules engine and alerts.
Building managers and owners have a simple, easy to understand overview of how their facilities are consuming resources (or in the case of solar, generation). This web portal is always accessible, visually clean and immediately understandable without specific knowledge of the system.
Data rich, glance-and-go experiences have become part of the modern digital lifestyle, and this should be the case for resource utilization data as well. Much like an activity tracker, when people have real-time access to data in an easy to understand format, they are more likely to make choices that benefit them and their environment. Buddy Ohm’s modular dashboards are designed to do just that.
Companion mobile experiences are crucial for monitoring and managing key systems for operators. Real-time push notifications when anomalies are detected, or predetermined thresholds are met means operators can act now, rather than looking backwards at historical events. Mobile can also be impactful for the people using the systems as part of their day-to-day activities. It can incentivize conservation by rewarding and gamifying behavior that will have a positive impact on the bottom line while reducing negative impact on the environment.
Hardware, service, maintenance and support are all included in a standard installation for a flat US$1500 a month. This is an enormous cost savings compared to traditional capital-intensive resource monitoring solutions that often run in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Customer data is already confirming that Ohm pays for itself within the first year as a result of energy savings realized.
“Given the real monetary and environmental benefits of resource monitoring for cities and buildings, these systems should not be reserved for just those with giant budgets,” said Habib Heydarian, Vice President of Product and Engineering, Buddy Platform. “With Buddy Ohm we are truly democratizing resource data by utilizing IoT class hardware, and leveraging the power of The Buddy Platform. Once operators and occupants have access to this data and the insights it can provide, they can be an active part of the effort to be more efficient.”