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August 2020
Interview

AutomatedBuildings.com

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Michael Lotfy

EMAIL INTERVIEWKen Sinclair and Michael Lotfy

Michael Lotfy, Vice President Smart Buildings, ABB



Strategies to deliver a low carbon future:

Future trends in the Smart Building industry for a sustainable future   

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Control Solutions, Inc

Sinclair:  With the recent acquisition of Cylon Controls, I understand you now have a full solution in the Smart Building market. I read that ABB Cylon is committed to zero emissions buildings. Can you explain more about what that commitment involves and where it fits in the industry?

Lotfy:  The design of zero-emission buildings and communities are driven by four trends; decarbonization of the electric power grid, automation of building space solutions (HVAC, Lighting, Energy distribution, flexible supply/load management..), efficiency improvements to reduce energy demand, and digitalization to provide flexibility in meeting the needs of building occupants and the energy grid. The ABB Smart Building Solutions team focuses specifically on helping our customers to have seamless integration of all electrification elements, gathering real time data, helping the building to make the right decisions are the right time, improving the experience of its occupants while reducing energy consumption helping to reduce emissions.

Sinclair:  Electrification is a major focus for decarbonization, by replacing gas-powered space and water heating with electric systems, however, intelligent building technologies also have a critical role in the low carbon future.

Lotfy:  Yes. Data analytics offer insight essential to monitor and achieve efficiencies in building operation reductions while delivering an enhanced occupant experience. Energy usage data also provides financial benefits to building owners and facility managers. Under-performing building systems impact energy consumption, environmental quality, and contribute to the high cost of building maintenance. Once smart building technologies are in place, a reduced carbon footprint will follow, needless to say, the overall experience of inhabitants in Automated smart buildings is far better than conventional buildings.

Sinclair:  There is an increased focus on health and wellness, and indoor air quality has become a prominent area for growth in smart buildings. Does ABB have a plan to address this issue?

Lotfy:  Studies have demonstrated that a strong correlation exists between high concentrations of CO2 and diminished cognitive performance in the workplace. We offer solutions that allow facility managers to monitor CO2, along with Smart Outside Air Damper Controls. The health and safety of building occupants have always been a high priority at ABB Cylon. In the meanwhile, I think we will see a predominate need coming up addressing air quality and filtration, reducing the cost barrier of air sanitization

Sinclair:  With the dramatic increase in the world’s energy use, both existing and new buildings should be fitted with renewable energy sources and smart energy systems. As these systems are commonplace, what makes ABB Cylon standout?

Lotfy:  ABB Electrification Business Area, with the Leadership of our President Tarak Mehta has been in the forefront of suitability, if you look at our Distribution Solutions on Medium & low voltage, alongside our EDCS platform (ABB Ability) from our Smart Power division all they way to our new  addition of Cylon Controls, we look now provide ABB Partners, Customers, System Integrators,  & end-users a comprehensive, world-class building solutions portfolio. From the incoming power to the building, its distribution, protection and management to the whole new Cylon range of products such as HVAC controls, that will open further opportunities to serve our global customers into the commercial buildings segment where ABB is already present and successful. With an expanded sales force, more coverage and an extended offering, we are a positioned as a powerhouse in building Solutions, controls and energy management solutions

PlantPROCORE Sinclair:  In getting back to ABB’s Mission to Zero commitment. How does that commitment affect the ABB Cylon solution in Smart Buildings?

Lotfy:  At ABB, we always aspired to provide solutions that would enable the acceleration of energy transition digitally and sustainably. We aimed to develop solutions that are scalable and flexible so it could be applied in all areas - from smart homes, smart buildings to smart E-transportation and the smart industry. We have put our decades of experience in electrification and pioneering digital technologies into practice to create a real-life, zero emission Eco System, which can be used to inspire change across multiple applications around the world. Our commitment smart technology in commercial buildings. The blending of ABB and Cylon creates a system in which all components are digitally networked and controllable. This intelligent ecosystem enhances energy efficiency, sustainability and resource conservation, enabling a genuine zero emission future for commercial buildings and beyond.

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