May 2012

Innovations in Comfort, Efficiency, and Safety Solutions.

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Robert BeverlyEMAIL INTERVIEWRobert Beverly and Ken Sinclair

Robert Beverly, Editor, Engineered Systems Magazine

Robert Beverly has worked at ES since 1998 and served as editor since 1999. The magazine hosted regular columns by founder Ken Sinclair for many years, including more than a few about some weird concept called "the cloud" and what it was going to mean for building controls someday.

High-Performance Buildings '12
Improving On A Good Thing

Here's a 2-minute Q&A about the annual High-Performance Buildings event
slated for this September 12-13.

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Sinclair: To back up for a second, how was last year's conference?

Beverly:  Honestly, we would've liked more people, but we got the best feedback we have ever gotten for an ES event. Sponsors who exhibited were telling us they had some great contacts. Attendees who had been before were saying it was the best batch of sessions yet. With a ton of help from Jeff Seewald at Building Intelligence Group (our co-presenter), we feel like we hit the sweet spot in terms of content.

SinclairAbout content. What's at the top of the marquee this time around?

BeverlyCraig Walker will deliver a keynote for us. He's the director of the Energy Systems Program Office at United Technologies Research Center. The title is "Advanced Building Systems: Guaranteed High Performance from Design through Operation" and here's his summary:
Because more than 40% of the world’s energy consumption occurs in the built environment, delivering dramatic energy use reduction in a broad cross section of buildings holds the promise to significantly reduce our energy footprint. Despite the existence of a few examples demonstrating lower energy use, the goal of developing solutions that are viable in a large fraction of the built environment remains elusive. This talk will identify some of the key technical and economic barriers to delivering and sustaining energy performance over the lifecycle of a building and describe several innovative systems technologies that have recently been developed and demonstrated.
So we're pretty excited to get that view from the cutting edge, while still recognizing the real obstacles that exist.

SinclairThat's sort of the tough thing to reconcile, isn't it?

Beverly:   Personally, what I like about this event is that a recurring theme for us has been to help bridge that gap between what is theoretical (or impractical for practically everyone) and the practical solutions people are trying to find for their buildings today. It is always exciting to see what's coming down the pike. It's better when people can actually connect some dots and bring one or two ideas to discuss and implement when they get back to the office. 

It can be flashier to focus on the former, but we try to keep our sights on the latter. That, and the discussion and networking, is what actually make the trip worthwhile and the event useful for people. Futuristic is great but if it isn't useful at the end of the day, people won't come, much less come back like some have.

Reliable Controls Sinclair: After moving this conference from city to city, are you finally staying put? 

BeverlyYep, we've been from Baltimore to San Diego, but the Washington area seems like a really good fit. Falls Church is convenient to both Dulles and Reagan National, and the location makes it attractive for a lot of people along the I-95 corridor to get in easily by car or even train.

Sinclair: Any early discounts people should know about?

BeverlyThere's a hefty earlybird discount running for at least most of this month. Here's how I've been describing it to people: the content is going to be just as good either way. The ideas and potential savings you take away from the event are going to be just as valuable. All that varies is whether you want to pay $200 more for it later on than you could now. Might as well register, get it out of the way, and save most of your hotel expense right off the bat.  Click to Register

Sinclair: What about session tracks?

Beverly:  Two tracks again, plus a little bonus content, and we can give folks some of the scoop on that lineup next month.


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