Sensing network

For assessing the performance of a building, there are a suite of sensors and meters that should be applied.
In generic terms, along with the environmental sensors, the energy sources that supply the building. The energy monitoring should include not only the electric power systems but also any other significant energy sources for the building, such as, gas or heat supply. Also, if there are any renewable power sources, they should be considered in the monitoring planning.
For the electrical energy monitoring, a set of energy meters should be used to monitor the building power sources (grid and renewable energy sources) and main energy consumers such as the HVAC and the lighting systems. Partial consumptions of specific parts of the building should also be monitored, especially the most significant loads. As mentioned above, other energy sources should also be monitored, like gas consumption and heat energy.

Indoor environmental conditions can be monitored by a set of sensors for the purpose to evaluate the comfort conditions of the building and control (optimize) the energy usage. For this, variables such as temperature and humidity, CO2 and VOC concentration levels should be monitored.
Outdoor conditions are also important to evaluate the performance of insulation technologies and of the HVAC systems. For this purpose, a simple local weather station should be used.
Along with the measurement devices to be applied in the building, it is also necessary to consider some additional infrastructural elements, such as data concentrators and protocol conversion bridges. In general terms standard communication protocols should be used and a combination of wired and wireless devices will offer the most flexible and inexpensive solutions in terms of installation (especially in the case of retrofitting) and maintenance.
More detail is available in our online courses