Multiple building services at a London free school are being managed from a single control system, following the use of modular I/O from WAGO.
John Keats Primary School is a new free school occupying the first two floors of a new residential development in South Bermondsey, London. The school opens to reception pupils in September 2018, and will eventually accommodate up to 450 students up to year six.
Neo System Automation Ltd, a WAGO Solution Partner, designed and installed all building controls, cabling and trunking. Four WAGO-I/O-SYSTEM 750 controllers are used, two of which are in mechanical plant rooms handling water heating and air handling. DALI and KNX controllers and I/O modules control all internal and external lighting from control cabinets accessed from the school corridors. The system is modular, allowing additional I/O slices to be easily added to the control node should the system need to be expanded.
Traditionally controlling DALI lighting, underfloor heating and HVAC would use several disparate control systems, from different manufacturers. This approach can take time to install and configure, requiring highly skilled personnel with expertise in multiple platforms, and often from different installing companies .
“The primary reason for using WAGO is its functionality,” says Carlton Reed of Neo System Automation Ltd. “No other manufacturer provides such a wide range of I/O, which allows us to use one system rather than three or four. This means reduced on-site configuration, and installation can be carried out in much less time.”
Pupils at the school will benefit from an enhanced learning environment, with the control systems monitoring conditions to provide optimum lighting, temperature, humidity and CO2 levels, all of which have been shown to improve concentration and alertness. Room sensors and passive-infrared sensors detect occupancy in rooms and corridors and adapt the conditions accordingly. Certain controls can be manually overridden by school staff, for example to turn off lights to show a film or presentation. With automated building controls and features like daylight harvesting, the system can reduce lighting and heating levels in areas where they are not needed, reducing energy costs by up to 30 percent compared to manually controlled systems.
WAGO supplied all cabling and trunking, which was prewired, tested and assembled in modular sections off-site at its facility in Rugby. Once delivered to site the trunking could be raised into position and plugged together with no additional wiring required. The ease of installation allowed Neo System Automation Ltd to de-skill on-site and reduce labour costs. The pluggable connectors used in the cabling are maintenance-free for the life of the installation, which will reduce future maintenance costs for the school.
“The WAGO controllers, I/O modules and wiring are all incredibly reliable. In all the years we’ve been using WAGO we’ve never had a single failure,” continues Reed. “We can also monitor and optimise the control system from off-site, which will practically eliminate the need for maintenance visits once the school opens.”