Energy and legionella monitoring systems on display at FM Ireland

Wireless telemetry specialist Radio-Tech will be showing its energy management and legionella monitoring systems at the Facilities Management Ireland Conference and Exhibition 2010. The event will be held at the RDS in Dublin on 23-24 March.

economise™ enables companies to easily monitor their consumption of electricity, gas and water, allowing reductions in consumption, and therefore cost savings, to be made.

Meanwhile, aquavision is a fully automated, maintenance-free system that helps facilities managers to comply with legislation aimed at controlling the levels of legionella bacteria in water storage and delivery systems.

Radio-Tech representatives Craig Anderson (sales manager) and Victoria Wheeler (marketing executive) can be found on stand C29.

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New AMR transmitter offers low-priced alternative to fixed network

Wireless telemetry specialist Radio-Tech has developed a low-cost automatic meter reading (AMR) transmitter for walk-by and drive-by monitoring of energy and water usage. The Smartlog Ultralite provides an alternative to costly fixed networks, but can also be used as an add-on to extend the range of an existing system.

AMR transmitter is low-cost alternative to fixed-network

AMR transmitter is low-cost alternative to fixed-network

The IP68-rated device is suitable for above- or below-ground applications, including sub-metering. Its firmware  can also be upgraded wirelessly.

The transmitter stores the pulse output from the meter pulse head or reed switch and then transmits the total in a secure data packet, along with a status indication and unique ID address, typically at ten-second intervals.

Aside from being used to enforce drought restrictions or apply block and seasonal tariffs, Smartlog Ultralite can also monitor for leakage and provide daily consumption amounts which can be used for accurate billing.

The product has a maximum operating distance of 100m and up to ten years’ battery life. Its dimensions are 40 x 36 x 110mm.

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Tax relief available for energy-saving equipment

Radio-Tech’s energy management system covered by the ECA

Wireless telemetry specialist Radio-Tech has announced that its energy management system now qualifies for the Carbon Trust’s Enhanced Capital Allowance (ECA) scheme under ‘Component-based automatic monitoring and targeting equipment (AMT)’. The scheme can realise significant financial savings, in both the short- and long-term, as well as aid improvements in a company’s energy efficiency and its environmental impact.

ECA

An ECA provides 100% tax relief on any investment in energy-saving equipment in the same tax year as the purchase is made. This means a business paying corporation tax at 28% will receive 28p tax relief for every £1 invested in energy-saving products. The scheme also reduces the payback period on the initial investment.

There are additional and significant long-term savings to be made from such an investment. Energy-saving equipment will usually reduce a company’s energy bills, which in turn will reduce the company’s Climate Change Levy.

The Carbon Trust, the independent body set up by the government to combat the threat of climate change, highlights the importance of AMT systems in its document How to monitor your energy use: “Automatic meter reading systems provide accurate and timely data with the minimum of effort. These systems make it easy to take readings in real time and therefore identify savings opportunities quickly. They often pay for themselves in under a year.”

Radio-Tech provides a range of radio telemetry products ideal for sub-metering applications (where organisations wish to measure energy consumption within particular areas of their sites). Low-power radio transmitters and data concentrators allow simple collection of metering data. Whether data is being collected from individual occupiers of commercial sites or different areas of a business, consumption and usage can be monitored remotely, accurately and securely.

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New energy management system on show at Energy Solutions Expo 2009

Wireless telemetry specialist Radio-Tech will be showing its range of energy management and sub-metering equipment at the Energy Solutions Expo 2009.

The company’s wireless data capture technology allows for 24/7 monitoring of remote assets and consumption of water, electricity and gas; regular reports on consumption allow usage to be cut, reducing both bills and environmental impact.

Central to the range is the new GPRS concentrator, the RT: Wi5, that receives, stores and transfers radio packets from the company’s UHF / VHF transmitters and boosters. The data transmitters, having collected relevant data, feed wirelessly into the RT: Wi5 from a range of up to 2.6km without repeaters, meaning a single receiver is able to cover large sites. It operates on Radio-Tech’s exclusive and licensed frequency of 153 MHz and can retrieve data either locally (via USB) or remotely (via Ethernet, WiFi or GPRS / GSM).

Radio-Tech’s stand will be manned by UK sales managers Craig Anderson and Chris Bridge, and marketing manager Helen Clarke.

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Monitor energy consumption and reduce costs

Wireless energy management system makes it easy to spot spikes in usage

Wireless telemetry specialist Radio-Tech has developed an energy management system to enable organisations to monitor and ultimately reduce their energy consumption.

Energy management

The company’s wireless data capture technology allows for 24/7 monitoring of remote assets and consumption of water, electricity and gas; regular reports on consumption allow usage to be cut, reducing both bills and environmental impact.

The Carbon Trust, the independent body set up by the government to combat the threat of climate change, highlights the importance of automatic meter reading in its document How to monitor your energy use: “Automatic meter reading systems provide accurate and timely data with the minimum of effort. These systems make it easy to take readings in real time and therefore identify savings opportunities quickly. They often pay for themselves in under a year.”

Radio-Tech provides a range of radio telemetry products ideal for sub-metering applications (where organisations wish to measure energy consumption within particular areas of their sites). Low-power radio transmitters and data concentrators allow simple collection of metering data. Whether data is being collected from individual occupiers of commercial sites or different areas of a business, consumption and usage can be monitored remotely, accurately and securely.

Radio-Tech’s market-leading technology not only includes meter reading but also network sensors that relay operationally beneficial data, such as humidity and temperature, to the central database. Core to the wide area product portfolio are the retrofittable pulse transmitters that have a range of 2km, or 12km if used with a repeater. They can be used in the UK on Radio-Tech’s exclusively licensed 153.100MHz band, or an alternative product range is available for use in Europe on the 169MHz ERMES band. A range of receivers is also available to interface transmitters with existing building management systems.

The hardware will output to Radio-Tech’s own or third-party software, and benefits from a 10-year battery life.

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Radio-Tech monitors bearing temperatures on Gatwick Express

Wireless telemetry specialist Radio-Tech has developed an innovative method of monitoring the temperature of motor coach suspension tube bearings for train operator Southern. The ground-breaking system is safeguarding Class 442 Electric Multiple Units on the new Gatwick Express extension service.

Bearing Temperature Monitor

Southern became concerned about a suspension tube bearing issue in June 2008, six months before the units were due to enter service to provide the extended Gatwick Express service from Brighton. Delegates from the Southern Fleet Engineering team attended the Institution of Engineering & Technology’s International Conference on Railway Condition Monitoring, during which they heard Radio-Tech’s Brian Back speak on the use of wireless technology for reliable remote condition monitoring. Encouraged by what they heard, and the success of previous Southern remote condition monitoring projects, the Southern Mid-Life Fleet Engineering team, led by Gordon Innes, asked Brian to adapt the technology to solve their problem.

Major constraints on the project included shocks of up to 50 G; co-location adjacent to conductors carrying 2,000 A DC; grease nipples that challenged the mounting strapping; battery operation; the close proximity of the transmitting antenna at the pinion end to the massive gear assembly; a radio path through the train’s floor; and railway safety approvals.

Radio-Tech decided to use the same data logger as found in its award-winning rail temperature monitor, although in this case the logger was mounted in the guard’s room rather than trackside.

The whole project was completed to schedule in just four months – from the initial evaluation and concept in August to delivery in December – including Railway Group Safety approvals conducted by Interfleet.

The system deployment is near completion across the whole Class 442 Gatwick Express fleet. Temperature readings are recorded every 15 minutes, stored in the data logger and then uplifted every two hours to a data server in Selhurst. The data is exported to an external database and alarm signals automatically dispatched should an excessive temperature be detected.

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New managing director at Radio-Tech

Wireless telemetry specialist Radio-Tech has appointed Scott Aitken as its new managing director. He joins from Halma sister company Radcom, where he oversaw rapid sales growth as operations director.

Scott Aitken

Scott holds a bachelors degree in chemistry from the University of Edinburgh and was awarded an MBA with merit from Oxford Brookes University. He is a chartered chemist and a member of the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Commenting on his new position, Scott said: “Radio-Tech is an exciting opportunity for me. We have some great products and a great team of innovative and motivated people. The prospects for next year are looking positive.”

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In-house display helps to cut water use by 39%

A retired couple from Weymouth have reduced their water consumption by 39% thanks to an in-house display from wireless telemetry specialist Radio-Tech.

Ian Reekie

Ian and Jean Reekie are the first domestic users of SMART View, which allows them to monitor their water usage, shape their consumption pattern and proactively check for leakage.  Within a month of the display being installed in their third-floor flat, the couple had reduced their average daily water consumption from 222 litres to 136.

“The primary value of SMART View is to be able to tell, within a day or so, how effective any water saving method is that we try,” said Ian.  “We’ve also been able to locate and identify our property’s big water consumers more easily, and then take the necessary action.”

SMART View excuses the couple from having to estimate the scale of their next bill, a difficult task given that they are billed every six months.  In addition, Ian is no longer obliged to clamber down into a pit in the middle of the pavement outside their flat to read the meter.

The solar-powered SMART View features convenient numerical and graphical displays for ease of interpretation, allowing customers to quickly compare their current, previous and average consumption.

“Jean and I believe that water will become an increasingly valuable commodity,” added Ian.  “The time to start saving water is now.  It needs all of us to participate to be effective and we want to play our small part.”

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New ‘smart AMR’ data logger saves water utilities time and money

Wireless telemetry specialist Radio-Tech has introduced the world’s most powerful automatic meter reading device for mobile applications, capable of converting a pulse-enabled water meter into a virtual smart meter.  SMART Log provides utilities with a cost-effective way of significantly improving both customer service and operational efficiency while protecting existing investment in metering and billing infrastructure.

SMART Log

SMART Log has an unprecedented memory capacity allowing it to store up to one year’s worth of time-stamped consumption and event history at half-hourly intervals, or six months’ worth at 15-minute intervals.  This remote logging capability offers a range of extra benefits that have previously only been available through the deployment of a fixed network: sophisticated tariff models to help manage and balance demand; customer-side leakage detection via low-flow monitoring; the ability to monitor and enforce drought restrictions; and back-flow detection with related event time details.

Once deployed, SMART Log transmits a ‘beacon’-type message every two seconds, enabling rapid data capture rates and ensuring maximum drive-by efficiency.

Data is collected via Radio-Tech’s PC application, SMART Patrol.  SMART Patrol is user configurable and can be set to wirelessly request between one and 52 weeks’ consumption and event history; typically, four weeks’ consumption history (the equivalent of 1,440 meter readings) can be downloaded in less than three seconds.

Radio-Tech’s smart AMR meter reading system is also compatible with SMART View, an environmentally friendly, solar powered in-house display.  SMART View allows residential customers to monitor their consumption and proactively check for leakage from the safety and comfort of their own home.  The display uses both numerical and graphical representations to show customers their total, average, previous and current consumption on a rolling 30-day period.

SMART Log qualifies for Enhanced Capital Allowances under the Carbon Trust Scheme.  This offers customers 100% capital allowances in year 1, which provides a significant cash flow incentive.  For more details go to www.eca.gov.uk/etl

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Remote legionella control monitoring system fully complies with L8

Wireless and cellular telemetry specialist Radio-Tech has produced a remote legionella control and monitoring system that delivers significant time and cost savings to employers.  The RTcom™ Legion is the only system currently available to fully comply with Table 3 of the Approved Code of Practice (ACoP) and Guidance, Legionnaires’ disease: The control of legionella bacteria in water systems (L8).

RTcom Legion

ACoP L8 stipulates that temperature monitoring should be carried out once a month on all sentinel taps  in both hot and cold water systems.  The traditional method of doing so is a labour-intensive operation requiring site attendance and associated travel costs.  RTcom™ Legion offers a cost-effective alternative means of monitoring individual or multiple sites remotely, using radio technology.

Should a water system fail to satisfy the levels indicated by ACoP L8, Radio-Tech’s monitor will issue an email or text alert to notify the relevant party.  During standard operation test results are stored electronically for over five years, enabling facilities managers to prove that testing and monitoring has been carried out in accordance with legal requirements.  This data can also be used to save money on gas or electricity consumption by ensuring that water heating systems are working at their optimum level.

RTcom Legion™ delivers an additional plumbing cost saving by excusing facilities managers from having to isolate dead legs  and infrequently-used outlets from the water system.  Such areas allow water to stagnate, increasing the potential for bacterial growth.

Since the new system is fully automated, all measurements taken are guaranteed to be accurate and obtained in a controlled manner, eliminating the potential for human error.

RTcom™ Legion is battery-operated, has a battery life of more than three years and, once fitted, is maintenance-free.

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