July 2014

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An Innovative Open Standard Layered Approach to Building Management 

Web service is a required element for the ever-increasing group management service systems, in which multiple buildings are managed in a group.

Jung In Choi
CEO Byucksan Power US,
Los Angeles CA

Email: jic@bspower.co.kr

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Energle Overview 

‘EnergleTM is a brand name of the Byucksan Power’ product for the building energy management system (BEMS).  The Energle
product line from Byucksan Power provides an integrated suite of products to provide comprehensive energy management for commercial buildings. The product line moves beyond HVAC and lighting to provide monitoring and control of plug load as well. Energle uses the open standard XML, OBIX 1.0 for communications between its architectural layers. Energle is moving rapidly to incorporate standard smart grid interfaces for demand response with OpenADR 2.0 certificate. Like most products based upon OBIX 1.0, interoperation with other products that implement OBIX is negligible. With the anticipated release of OBIX 1.1, Energle has the opportunity to shore up this area and to promulgate its versions of OBIX contracts to other areas. The maturation of the OpenADR standards for demand response will require further changes in the top-tier applications. Because of the lead Energle has in using energy-specific OBIX contracts internally, Byucksan Power can demonstrate leadership in this area by setting the standards.

Recently, Energle is moving from BEMS to the ‘IoT (Internet of Things)’ platform by providing internet connection to things such as sensors and actuators in the building. It can be a potential must-have device for realization the of ‘IoB’ (Internet of Buildings).

Graphic 1

Energle Architecture and Core Offerings

Architecture of Energle 

Energle is built upon open standards to an extent that is unique in the world of enterprise energy management systems. Energle relies on enterprise standards for systems control, for metrology, and for three smart grid interactions. Energle uses a multi-tier architecture that uses open standards for communications between tiers, which potentially allows it to easily incorporate products from third parties.

Energle platform is designed around four layers of things connected, middleware, web service interface and cloud server.

  1. Things connected layer contains the actual equipment and physical elements that need to be connected to the Internet. The layer composes of sensor and/or actuator and communication network.
  2. Middleware layer collects all of the thing’s data, mines, and converts into a single standard format (OBIX) for database and contains the applications that provide monitoring, control and analytics through a local dashboard.
  3. Web service interface layer provides open standards (WSDL) in the form of SOAP/REST protocol with security (SSL).
  4. Cloud server layer contains the integration of local Energle platforms across the enterprise for maintenance and operational activities.

Graphic 2

Core Offerings 

The platform offers four major capabilities of Monitoring, Control, Analytics and Service.

  1. Monitoring provides the real-time status data of the things considered through various meters and sensors. Data can be used in visualization and in notification for operation and maintenance.
  2. Control provides the actions properly taken based on monitoring at local and/or remote site, in manual and/or automatic mode, immediate upon receipt of event and/or by scheduling. One killer applications is AutoDR.
  3. Analytics provides the trending, optimization, statistics and reporting functions for efficient and predictive operation and maintenance.
  4. Service creates the integrated value combined with external data, infrastructure, market, policy and regulation in cloud server layer.

Product Description 

Energle is a commercial IoT middleware platform based on open-standard OBIX, providing Web Service and Web Security with UL and OpenADR2.0 certified.  Built-in physical communication are RJ45 ethernet port for TCP/IP, serial  port for RS232/RS485 and wireless antenna for Zigbee /Bluetooth/WiFi.

Plugged-in things are Digital Switchgear (OPC/Modbus), Smart Meter (ANSI/DLMS/Modbus), Smart Load/Sensor (Zigbee/SE), HVAC/Thermostat (BACnet/OBIX), LED/Lighting (ZigBee/SE/DALI), Heat Pump/Motor (Modbus/OPC), and DER/Solar/ESS/EV (IEC61850/Modbus).  Other things can be plugged in their standard or proprietary protocol. 

Graphic 4 

Software Architecture 

Energle provides two modules of Platform Module and Cloud Service Module. The Platform Module is installed in the Energle IOT server box located inside the building, while the Cloud Module is installed in the service server in or outside the building. The Platform Module composes of two sub-modules of  ‘Protoss’ and ‘Sgobix’.  Protoss provides device protocol conversion and Sgobix provides web service in SOAP and RESTful with web security such as SSL/TLS.  The Cloud Module manages multiple platform modules and provides various useful applications for monitoring, control, analytics and reports.

The Energle server in IOT box or in cloud supports grid-centric communications using the leading standards for Demand Response.  Demand Response refers to the ability of a building to change its energy use (Demand) in response to signals received from the grid. In particular, Energle supports the pre-standard OpenADR (Automated Demand Response) as well as the standards-based OpenADR 2.0 Profile A. The Korean National Virtual Power Plant (NVPP) project is currently based on OpenADR 1.0.  OpenADR 2.0 is a new specification based on profiling OASIS Energy Interoperation. The Energle product line supports both in-building monitoring and control and external grid communications, acting as a VEN(Virtual End Node). The Cloud Module can be a VTN (Virtual Top Node) sending OpenADR signals to the Platform Modules.

Graphic 5

Muti-Tier User Interfaces  

Energle provides muti-tier user interfaces in local dash board, site portal and cloud portal as follows;

Graphic 6 

Local Dash Board   
- UI for a single IOT server
- Configure & manage local devices connection to the IOT server
- Access mainly through smart phone/pad app by the personnel user
- Remote monitoring & control available
- Limited in number of device connected and in data storage capacity
- Any other PC server not necessary

Site Portal  
- UI for a single site with multiple IOT servers
- Configure & manage IOT servers and connected services
- Access mainly through Desk App or site web URL by the site manager

Cloud Portal
- UI for the cloud service
- Configure and manage IOT servers all over the locations
- Access mainly through service web URL by the service manager
- Access mainly through smart phone app after authentication by the user



-    Monitoring   

•      Meter-Tree & Device Locator
•      By Device and Region
•      Real-time Energy Usage & Cost

-    Control 

•      Remote Device Control
•      Scheduling
•      Automatic Demand Response

-    Analysis & Report

•      History Data Mining & Analysis
•      Hourly, Daily, Monthly Usage
•      Cost Saving Calculation
•      Carbon Reduction Calculation

-    Client UI

•      Platform Independent
•      Window, Linux, Android, iOS
•      RIA based Dashboard & Web
•      PCWidget, Smart Phone/Pad, Web

Graphic 7

Who is Byucksan Power?  

Byucksan Power Co. Ltd. was incorporated as a subsidiary of the parent company, Byucksan Engineering Group who provides total engineering service since 1976 mainly in South Korea.  Byucksan Power has started its business in US since 2011 with a purpose to be well-positioned to market its energy efficiency related product EnergleTM.  We have installed Energle servers in 126 sites and gateways in 3,700 subsites, in Korea.  We are managing 44.8 MW of AutoDR capacity in 2013.  Byucksan Power US located in Los Angeles is providing engineering and consulting services in line with selling the product, Energle.

What is EnergleTM?  

contemporary EnergleTM is Byucksan Power’s brand name of BEMS, which is used to manage building energy effectively. Energle is a gateway -like IoT server box with a web-standard OBIX-based open platform solution. The Energle gateway interworks with various energy-related devices through the communication network, providing monitoring, control and analytics in real time, and managing energy use in an efficient manner. By doing so, we will be able to improve their energy efficiency and demand response capability, thus customer value will be generated with the reduction of energy bill and carbon emission.

The competitive advantage of Energle is that it is a web-based open software platform, that it provides superior interoperability and scalability, and that it provides convenience with plug and play features. Energle is one of the products that lead commercialization in the world. Particularly, Energle is a web-based OBIX platform, and provides a powerful web service by nature. Web service is a required element for the ever-increasing group management service systems, in which multiple buildings are managed in a group. This feature makes Energle to hold a dominant position in the market. The solution optimized for the new smart grid environment provides interworking with external power grid services and integrated management of in-building distributed power and storage system through the web service. Energle has granted UL certificate and OpenADR 2.0 VEN certificate for automatic demand response service in US.

What is a core competitiveness of Energle in global BEMS market?  

Innovative technology based on reverse-thinking

The typical BEMS technology which is based on the BAS technology is not sufficient for Byucksan to compete with the technology/market-leading global giant companies in BEMS/BAS. Therefore, in order to compete with these products at the same level, the company needs to develop innovative solutions that can minimize or incapacitate the premium of the existing technologies. Energle is the open standards BEMS platform developed based on OBIX web standard technology, providing the maximum interoperability, scalability and convenience. Energle is an innovative product optimized for web service. Giant companies’ web-based BEMS products are all designed to support web service based on the existing BAS technologies, having the inertia of the existing technology, and there is a limit in growth in comparison with OBIX-based Energle which is designed for web service by nature. This innovative technology element will act as an absolute competitive edge in the market.

There is an analogy to the change of mobile phone industry. BAS is like an analog-based mobile phone; giant player’s legacy BEMS solution is like a semi-open feature phone such as Nokia-phone; and Energle is like a full-open smart phone, I-phone. The feature phone is designed as a phone, and it is expanded to provide the computer function, while, the smart phone is, designed, by nature, as a computers which also provide the phone function. This difference in its origin such as a simple reverse thinking, collapsed the existing mobile phone market completely, and brought the change to the smart phone era.

In a similar way, Energle is like a computer providing the BEMS function, and other solutions are like BEMS providing the computer function. Energle has be born in web service, suitable in the internet environment . In this respect, Energle has a powerful competitiveness that can change the BEMS market.

OpenADR, the XML-based AutoDR technology, is in perfect harmony with Energle, which is also based on OBIX. The two core features of Energle will create a synergy effect, bring the company a global competitiveness in the energy efficiency and DR market.

What is a marketing strategy of Energle in US? 

Maximize advantages of innovative technologies.

Large commercial buildings are very conservative in introducing a new technology. Especially when reliability and economic efficiency are not proven, and there is no statutory requirement, a new business will find it difficult to find the market for its innovative technology. For small and medium sized buildings, on the other hand, it is relatively easy for a new business to find the market if the cost-effectiveness is guaranteed. Therefore, Energle’s OBIX-based powerful web service and OpenADR-based AutoDR function will maximize cost-effectiveness and substantially cut down the time required to recover the investment by group-managing numbers of small/medium-sized buildings and by securing additional revenue through DR. This kind of technical innovativeness enables Byucksan to adopt the long-tail marketing to bring, into the market, the small/medium-sized buildings, 99% of which have not BEMS in place yet. This is possible when the cost is minimized through innovativeness of the technology. SCE, a utility company in California, provides its service to 5,000 large buildings while to 280,000 small/medium-sized buildings targeted by Energle.
What are the cases with Energle implementation in US? 

We have been trying to build some pilot projects for California Community College (CCC) in US. CCC has 112 campuses and 5,000 buildings with the total area of 71million ft2 in California. CCC headquarter has already build a large Facility Management System (FMS) platform called “FUSION”. With taking advantage of its FUSION platform, CCC is trying to adopt open architecture BEMS solution for energy efficiency and demand response program of local ISOs and IOUs. We have already implemented Energle into several CCC buildings. Some user interface for CCC buildings can be accessed by using ‘iEnergle’ in Appstore as follows :

Graphic 8

Describe the features of Energle as an IoT server.

One of salient features of Energle is the IoT application. By using an IoT device such as ‘iBeacon’, the Energle can provide a real-time monitoring and control function for the customer who resides in the building . When he comes into the building lobby, iBeacon sends a signal through Bluetooth and prompts Energle app in his ipad or iphone. Then, he can monitor the energy usage in the lobby and manage the loads. Also, when the customer enters into the facility room, he can check the status of HVAC and control the set point. The IoT function can eliminate the concern of malfunction or security problem of legacy BEMS due to remote control.

Graphic 9 

About the Author

Dr. Jung In Choi -  CEO of Byucksan Power, Director of Smart Grid Research Center in AICT
As an entrepreneur and a professor, Dr. Jung In Choi has 20 years experience in open standard technology and business in the energy and ICT sector. He founded an ICT venture VOCEWEB in 2000 then merged into Byucksan Power in 2009. He has devised and developed an innovative product of Energle for smart building energy management. He granted the 2010 Korean Venture Awards. He is also charge of the director of Smart Grid Research Center in Advanced Institute of Convergence Technology at Seoul National University. He is a global thought leader in convergence technology of Energy with ICT/IoT. As an industrial partner, he has been working with Smart Grid Energy Research Center in UCLA since 2011.

Jung In Choi holds BS and MS from Seoul National University, and Ph.D in Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


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