Nicknamed the gateway to Southern California, the city of Ontario, as well as neighboring city Montclair, is home to the third largest elementary school district in California, the Ontario-Montclair School District (OMSD).

Founded in 1884, the district also incorporates portions of the city of Upland, and unincorporated areas of San Bernardino County, comprising 24,000 students in 26 elementary schools and six middle schools.

Ontario-Montclair School District

Ontario-Montclair School District’s overall mission is simple yet speaks volumes to its dedication to all students, to do whatever it takes to guarantee its commitment in providing the highest quality education for all students. To meet this mission head-on, OMSD contracted with TMAD Taylor Gaines, a professional engineering consulting and services firm.

Ontario Montclair School District was interested in reducing their overall energy costs by 20%"

Ontario Montclair School District was interested in reducing their overall energy costs by 20%, they along with other school districts throughout California were mandated to reduce their overall energy costs,” said John Simmons, RCDD, LEED AP, and Project Manager for TMAD Taylor Gaines.

He adds, “We initially ran some numbers based upon information we found on Bard HVAC’s website, and through consultation with Geary Pacific Supply, Bard’s largest West Coast distributor.

Geary Pacific, distributor of new HVAC units

Based upon the scope of the projects in consideration, the money available to fund them and the overall cost of the units in consideration, as well as overall potential energy savings, TMAD Taylor Gaines recommended that OMSD select Geary Pacific as the distributor of the new HVAC units.

We considered other companies as part of our overall recommendation but in all honesty we were impressed by a couple of things. First, Bard Manufacturing had a wealth of product and technical information about their products on their website, including case studies of other customer successes. That in combination with Geary Pacific’s previous experience working successfully with the School District made our recommendation a simple one,” added John Simmons.

Bard wall-mounted HVAC units deployed

Our District was already familiar with Bard because we had success using some of their other wall mounted units on several of our modular school buildings,” said Craig Misso, Director of Facility Planning & Operation at Ontario Montclair School District, adding “Our goal was to not only upgrade our facilities and make them more energy efficient, but also work to reduce some of the HVAC noise inside the classroom, as well as save on the purchase, operation and maintenance of all of the units at our schools.

TMAD Taylor Gaines and Geary Pacific’s approach was to do the retrofit in several phases. The pilot project encompassed one site, Sultana Elementary School, which included 24 re-locatable buildings, made up of both newer and some older construction.

Bard WG*S Step Capacity Series units with CO2 sensors

TMAD Taylor Gaines and Geary Pacific started doing groups of schools, encompassing 14 different building sites

Sultana was a great school for the pilot because there were a lot of little issues to contend with and work through,” stated Simmons, adding “The Bard WG*S Step Capacity Series units with Energy Recovery Ventilators and CO2 sensors worked great and we were initially very surprised at how quiet they actually operated.

After that, TMAD Taylor Gaines and Geary Pacific started doing groups of schools, encompassing 14 different building sites. Group one included 6 schools and approximately 83 units while Group 2 included 8 schools and 101 units.

It was during the second group of installations that TMAD Taylor Gaines realized that putting in units that required the installation of underground gas piping was not the best solution for all classrooms.

Bard’s Quiet Climate 2 units

That’s when Geary Pacific recommended utilizing Bard’s Quiet Climate 2 units with Energy Recovery Ventilators and CO2 sensors in about 1/3 of the overall installation. “Bard’s Quiet Climate 2 units are some of the most energy-efficient HVAC units on the market today,” said Maury Tiernan of Geary Pacific, adding “Plus the operational sound level is extremely low and is greatly appreciated by the students and teachers.”

John Simmons said, “We were really pleased at how easily these units were able to be retrofitted into the re-locatable classrooms. There are almost no changes and smooth sailing in almost all cases.

Quiet, efficient operation

The dramatic reduction in operating noise levels was an added improvement and benefit for which Craig Misso was particularly proud. “At Sultana, we invited some of the teachers and our principal over to see the new classrooms. Our principal asked, ‘Why aren’t the new HVAC units running’? I had to laugh, because I knew they were on. They were just so quiet nobody could tell that they were working. That moment sold every teacher on the Bard units,” added Craig Misso of Ontario Montclair School District.

From the very beginning, Geary Pacific became our partner in the success of the project,” stated Simmons, adding “Always available to answer questions on-site and knowledgeable about all aspects of the product and installation I can honestly say they can’t do anything wrong by me. Geary Pacific and the engineers at Bard Manufacturing came through in every way possible and more.

Wall-mounted heating and cooling equipment expert

Bard’s HVAC products offer a combination of quiet operation, and energy efficiency

Over thirty years ago, Bard Manufacturing began solving the comfort needs of schools across the country by providing wall-mounted heating and cooling equipment. Bard’s HVAC products offer a combination of quiet operation, and energy efficiency, with unsurpassed quality and dependability that make them the #1 choice for schools.

With three, state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities and a global distribution network, Bard’s commitment to quality and product innovation begins with its commitment to research and development. With features like self-diagnostics and self-programming energy monitors, Bard delivers products that provide tangible solutions for any school.

Energy and cost savings

The Bard units reduced ambient classroom noise levels by over 75% and further gave us a 50% savings in energy,” said Misso, adding “This savings allowed us to also install software on our computers that automatically turns off the lights and the AC, when the classrooms are unoccupied, which further increased our savings. Our hope is to have the funds necessary to install all 280 Bard units as specified by TMAD Taylor Gaines.

Misso concluded, “Geary Pacific has been extremely professional and service oriented throughout the project. Because of our School Board’s commitment to energy conservation, our District will receive a dual reward, recognized energy savings and efficiency with an enhanced classroom environment for our students and teachers. We couldn’t ask for anything more.

Share with LinkedIn Share with Twitter Share with Facebook Share with Facebook
Download PDF version Download PDF version

In case you missed it

Building Information Management 3D Modeling Simplifies Completion Of Building Projects, Including HVAC
Building Information Management 3D Modeling Simplifies Completion Of Building Projects, Including HVAC

Building Information Management (BIM) software creates an intelligent 3D model of a design or building project and provides documentation, coordination and simulation through each step of the project’s lifecycle, from planning to design, building to operation and even maintenance. Use of a 3D model enables stakeholders across various disciplines to visualize and understand every detail of a project before it is built, makes it easier to document a project, and facilitates communication among various parties. Construction logistics and details are shared among contractors, including HVAC, and teams can work more efficiently. Any updates to a project can be made easily and communicated universally; there are fewer mistakes because of miscommunication. Reworks are minimized. BIM modeling software, for example, can help designers lay out ductwork and pipes in a new structure, and automatically detect any collisions or clashes among objects before they become a problem in the “real world.” Facilitating communication of specifications Contractors can create an accurate virtual model of proposed new systems and/or of existing systems. BIM modeling also provides a central repository for all construction design documents, characteristics and operational details. BIM software therefore becomes a resource where designers and planners can access information and solve any future problems during the planning stage. Facilitating communication of specifications saves money during construction. If there is a change to a diffuser or other component on a floorplan, that change is automatically updated wherever the diffuser is located, thus making engineering design changes easier and more efficient. Any equipment or component can be easily swapped out to improve performance, and all drawings are updated automatically with the changes. Higher productivity equates to less project time and costs. enhance construction productivity Learning how to leverage BIM can provide a key differentiator from more traditional HVAC competitors Having a single, accurate point of reference enhances construction productivity and cuts down on cross-referencing and approval times. Understanding BIM and being familiar with operating in a BIM environment provides an advantage for HVAC companies seeking to be considered for projects. Learning how to leverage BIM can provide a key differentiator from more traditional HVAC competitors. And it makes the job easier: BIM facilitates coordination in the field among HVAC installers, energy contractors, and building owners. In the building industry, BIM enables extra HVAC planning during preconstruction and construction phases. Ductwork can be routed for the most efficient air flow and while avoiding clashes with structural elements or other equipment. An engineer can download data from BIM drafting files and carry out load and performance calculations using software to ensure a better design. building heating system Increasing use of BIM for HVAC projects enables engineers to design systems that are energy-efficient, which is an important factor given that the HVAC system will account for 30 to 40% of a building’s energy costs. New advantages of BIM for HVAC are emerging, too. For example, Austrian technology researchers have examined the use of BIM data to automatically generate control strategies for energy systems, thus simplifying and accelerating the commissioning phase. The methodology creates control strategies of a building heating system with several variations of renewable energy systems and includes both heat provisioning and a distribution system.

Panasonic Research Verifies Hydroxyl Radicals Can Inhibit Novel Coronavirus
Panasonic Research Verifies Hydroxyl Radicals Can Inhibit Novel Coronavirus

Panasonic has conducted research that verifies that hydroxyl radicals contained in water can inhibit the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2). The nano-sized electrostatic atomized water particles are generated by applying high voltage to moisture in the air. The patented technology - brand-named 'nanoe X' - is already used for air and surface purification in Panasonic’s air conditioning systems. The research suggests that the technology might be useful in fighting the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 in addition to its use to inhibit odors, pollutants, allergens, and other viruses. The research was conducted in collaboration with Mayo Yasugi, Associate Professor, Department of Veterinary Science, Graduate School of Life and Environmental Sciences, Osaka Prefecture University. Here is a clarification from Panasonic: "While Panasonic makes a wide range of products that generate these type of free radicals, none of these products has been tested for efficacy in the inhibition of the SARS-CoV-2 virus on surfaces or in the air. We continue to monitor the latest research and study the matter, and in the event that scientifically sound research shows our product/s to be effective in helping to inhibit this virus, we will work with the appropriate regulatory bodies to ensure all information is validated." inhibit pathogenic microorganisms Hydroxyl radicals contained in water are characterized by being strongly oxidative and highly reactive. Panasonic has conducted research on the technology since 1997 and has verified its effectiveness to inhibit pathogenic microorganisms (bacteria, fungi, viruses) and allergens, breaking down PM2.5 components that have adverse effects on the human body. In 2012, Panasonic conducted a virus clearance test with a third-party organization and confirmed the effectiveness of each of four categories in terms of biological characteristic. Based on the result, Panasonic announced that “hydroxyl radicals contained in water” technology could be expected to have an inhibitory effect on new viruses. evaluate product performance The virus infectious titer was measured and used to calculate the inhibition rate SARS-CoV-2 is an example of a new type of virus, and now testing (in July 2020) has confirmed that the hydroxyl radicals contained in water do in fact have an inhibitory effect, according to Panasonic. The testing was carried out in a closed laboratory environment and was not designed to assess efficacy in uncontrolled living spaces. The comparative verification was conducted in a 45L test space that contained the novel coronavirus with and without exposure to hydroxyl radicals contained in water. Over 99% of novel coronavirus activity was inhibited within three hours. Panasonic emphasizes the verification was designed to generate basic research data and not designed to evaluate product performance. A piece of gauze inoculated with the virus solution was placed in a petri dish and exposed to hydroxyl radicals contained in water for a pre-determined time. The virus infectious titer was measured and used to calculate the inhibition rate. creating healthy environments The same test was performed three times to confirm reproducibility. The reactive components generated by “the electrostatic atomized water technology” are “wrapped and contained” in the water particle, so the substances have a longer life and are delivered to wider areas than usual ions. Panasonic says it will continue to pursue the potential of “hydroxyl radicals contained in water” technology to address possible risks associated with air pollution such as new pathogenic microorganisms, with the aim of creating healthy environments for people around the world.

How Do IoT Sensors Improve Building Performance?
How Do IoT Sensors Improve Building Performance?

Sensors have been used in buildings since the invention of air conditioning to understand how buildings are performing, from in-room temperature sensors, to sensors on plant equipment, motors, ductwork and pipes. The Internet of Things (IoT) has enabled more sensors of different types to be deployed in more locations throughout the building easier than ever before. The point of installing and using IoT sensors is to gain deeper insight into how buildings are performing, and ensure buildings are healthier, more productive for people to work in, more effective to run and more energy efficient. This article looks at in-room sensors, such as temperature, air quality and occupancy, and how IoT sensors can help improve building performance. The benefits of IoT sensors is that they are easy to install, both physically and from a commissioning perspectiveThe benefits of IoT sensors is that they are easy to install, both physically and from a commissioning perspective. Cabling is usually minimal or not required at all: IoT sensors are battery powered, or require simple USB power (from a plug socket) or utilise Power over Ethernet (PoE). IoT sensors use low power wireless protocols (such as Bluetooth, Mesh etc) to send data, and thus can be placed anywhere within a building and do not require multiple physical IOs for integration. Unprecedented amounts of data IoT sensors are usually cost-effective such that thousands of sensors can be deployed throughout the building without much effort. This gives an unprecedented amount of data to building managers, which comes with its own challenges – How to make use of this data? There are two ways to utilise this data to improve building health, performance and efficiency: Use an effective monitoring platform or data analysis tools to turn raw data into actionable insights. This can provide the building and facilities team with insights to be more pro-active, and spot temperature, air quality, overcrowding, etc issues even before the users or tenants begin to notice e.g. it’s too cold, too drafty, too stuffy, etc. Integrate the live data from the IoT sensors straight into the Building Management System (BMS) and create new control strategies to automate the building further. This requires a bit more integration and commissioning work upfront, but the performance and efficiency benefits through automation will give a fast Return on Investment. The key here isn’t the sensor integration itself, but the building control strategy that will be the logic to which the building automation fucntions. Some use cases of IoT sensors are: Temperature and HVAC A common problem I’ve heard from many buildings is that existing temperature sensors that connect to the BMS have been placed in the ceiling, and not at head height. Using battery powered IoT temperature (and humidity) sensors, and sticking them to the wall at head height, is a quick and easy way to measure temperature where it actually matters.Data can be used to plot temperature heatmaps, find hot or cold spots, or analyse the solar heat gain Data can be used to plot temperature heatmaps, find hot or cold spots (e.g. if two nearby FCUs are working against each other, one heating one cooling); or analyse the solar heat gain, and adjust internal loads. The IoT temperature sensors can be connect to the BMS to provide more accurate temperature data to FCUs instead of the sensors in the ceiling. In general, IoT senors can easily be reconfigured and moved, e.g. during a fit out. But care needs to be taken to keep a close eye on the sensors and which room/space they relate to. Battery will need to be changed every 5 years. The IoT temperature sensors are cheap enough that they can simply be replaced with new ones e.g. the sensors element need recalibrating. Indoor air quality sensors and HVAC Accurate CO2 level sensors (which use duel channel NDIR technology) with IoT connectivity are getting cheaper and can also be used to do ‘heatmapping’, of the building, and provide accurate insights on indoor air quality. Similarly, heatmaps can be done with particulate matter sensors (PM10, PM2.5, PM1), VOC sensors and others embedded in an IoT connected sensor. CO2 level sensors in Accurate CO2 level sensors  with IoT connectivity are getting cheaper and can also be used to do ‘heatmapping’particular are important as the level of CO2 indoors affects our cognitive ability. High indoor CO2 levels hinder our productivity. Indoor CO2 levels of 900ppm to 1400ppm and higher, which are seen in buildings with poor ventilation, reduce our ability to make decisions and use complex information by 15% to 50% and higher, respectively. Indoor CO2 levels are also a good indication of the risk of infection, as people breathing are usually the main source of CO2 in buildings. So being able to monitor CO2 levels in every space inside the building will provide building owners, tenants and users with reassurance with regard to COVID-19 related challenges. ‘eCO2’, a derivative from VOC sensors, should NEVER be used as a measure of CO2 levels. All CO2 sensors elements need to be recalibrated every 3-5 years. Occupancy level and HVAC Knowing the occupancy on every floor of the building can be used to control HVAC systems. Through BMS integration, controlling the flow of ventilation dynamically, based on real-time floor-by-floor occupancy, allows the building to ‘breathe’ with actual demand.Employing an occupancy-based, dynamic control strategy on the BMS reduces the energy consumption for buildings that rarely see full occupancy This balances the building from a technical perspective, and improves air delivery by opening up more ventilation capacity. Employing an occupancy-based, dynamic control strategy on the BMS, not only improves the indoor air quality, but also reduces the energy consumption for buildings that rarely see full occupancy, or have dynamic use (which will only be more common as we begin to work-from-home more often) Measuring the number of people is difficult, which usually means expensive. One way to count people is using PIR sensors places under each desk. This can get expensive for 1,000 desks even if one IoT PIR sensor is relatively cheap. Another way is to use a less accurate, but cheaper method, e.g. using long-range sensors that count the number wireless devices in a vicinity / floor, and using that as a proxy for percentage occupancy levels. Summary 1,000s of IoT sensors can be easily installed anywhere throughout any building. To get the best out of an IoT system a clear use case (or set of use cases) is necessary. By understanding the use cases and benefits, the right design, UI or integration can be used to maximise the cost-benefit ratio for the specific use cases, for example: BMS integration for IoT temperatures sensors; Relevant platform UI and analysis to extract actionable insights for the Facilities Management team from the raw IoT sensor data; or Correct HVAC control and automation strategy based on occupancy level data.

vfd