Top 5 Trends in Commercial Real Estate Energy Management Solved by Blue Pillar’s Energy IoT Platform: Part 2

Posted by Robert Garrett, Sales Director on Oct 5, 2017 9:11:00 AM

In Part 1 of this blog series, we began to tackle the problems facing Commercial Real Estate (CRE) firms in the area of energy management. We discussed how Blue Pillar’s  Aurora® Energy Network of Things® platform eliminates the need for custom SCADA networks and provides fast and cost-effective solutions for scaling across multiple facilities in disparate geographic locations that have diverse sets of energy assets. There’s no need to rip and replace each facility’s legacy hardware infrastructure. Aurora “digitizes” assets into an IoT network and our proprietary solution remembers the configuration for each piece of equipment and each building surveyed so that knowledge can then be applied against all remaining buildings to create a rapid deployment across a national, and international, footprint. Yet additional questions still need to be addressed:

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Topics: Energy Management, Centralized Facility Management, Behind-the-meter connectivity, Energy IoT, Commercial Real Estate

Top 5 Trends in Commercial Real Estate Energy Management Solved by Blue Pillar’s Energy IoT Platform: Part 1

Posted by Robert Garrett, Sales Director on Oct 3, 2017 9:34:48 AM

As the owners of widely diverse building portfolios throughout the United States — some new, some old — Commercial Real Estate (CRE) firms host hundreds of tenants who use varying amounts of energy 24/7/365. These CRE firms have had a front row seat in experiencing the problems and challenges of energy management. Over the years, many of the building energy needs have changed while legacy hardware infrastructure has remained the same. Hardware assets may have become stranded, while generation assets that are decades old may still have many years of usable life left in them. Electric and water meters may have been updated in some locations, but not in others. And all these systems have become more diverse and complex as the buildings are bought and sold. It’s this history that makes commercial buildings such an interesting energy management challenge to solve. And as the need for more sophisticated billing and consumption data becomes a priority to CRE organizations, the question they must answer remains the same: “Are we able to get the real-time data necessary to meet our current and future energy management needs from this aging energy infrastructure of disparate ‘Energy Things’?”

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Topics: Energy Management, Centralized Facility Management, Behind-the-meter connectivity, Energy IoT, Commercial Real Estate

Blue Pillar Wins Prestigious Frost & Sullivan Growth Leadership Award for Behind-the-Meter Internet- of-Energy, Part 3:  Energy Network-as-a-Service (ENaaS)

Posted by Todd Krause, Chief Commercial Officer on Sep 28, 2017 9:45:00 AM

In our last blog post, we outlined the factors that contributed to Blue Pillar’s selection as the winner of Frost & Sullivan’s Growth Excellence Leadership Award due to the ability to better address behind-the-meter connectivity needs of commercial and industrial (C&I) customers. But innovating in the ways to deliver exceptional customer value through our services-based approach was something that distinguished us from the competition.

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Topics: Energy Management, Behind-the-meter connectivity, Energy IoT, Award News, Energy Network-as-a-Service, Distributed Energy Resources

Blue Pillar Wins Prestigious Frost & Sullivan Growth Leadership Award for Behind-the-Meter Internet- of-Energy, Part 2: Open to Third-Party Software

Posted by Todd Krause, Chief Commercial Officer on Sep 21, 2017 9:45:00 AM

Highlighting the rapid emergence of distributed energy resources (DERs), the newly released report from Frost & Sullivan establishes the need for utilities and their commercial and industrial (C&I) customers  to create behind-the-meter networks of DERs to enable a number of applications including:

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Topics: Energy Management, Behind-the-meter connectivity, Energy IoT, Award News, Energy Network-as-a-Service, Distributed Energy Resources

Blue Pillar Wins Prestigious Frost & Sullivan Growth Leadership Award for Behind-the-Meter Internet- of-Energy, Part 1

Posted by Todd Krause, Chief Commercial Officer on Sep 19, 2017 9:43:28 AM

Today, Blue Pillar announced we were recognized with Frost & Sullivan’s “2017 North American Behind-the-meter Internet-of-Energy Growth Excellence Leadership Award” for connecting behind-the-meter assets that can help overcome reliability and resiliency challenges, while also being first in market to offer Energy Network-as-a-Service (ENaaS). Each year, Frost & Sullivan bestows this award upon the company that demonstrates excellence in growth and customer value. It recognizes the superiority of the product/service, as well as the overall customer, purchase, ownership, and service experience offered, which has resulted in the recipient company seeing above-market growth and greater share of wallet. The award lauds the growth, diversification, and sustainability strategies of the company.

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Topics: Energy Management, Behind-the-meter connectivity, Energy IoT, Award News, Energy Network-as-a-Service, Distributed Energy Resources

Universities Advance their Energy Management and Carbon Neutrality Strategies Forward with Blue Pillar Energy IoT

Posted by Eric Reichel, Vice President Product & Operations on Aug 29, 2017 9:03:00 AM

In an age where forward-thinking organizations are under pressure to become more sustainable and energy efficient, universities come under some of the greatest scrutiny to meet net zero and lower carbon footprints. From profit-driven investors and Boards of Directors who regularly cheer their teams on in high-octane stadiums down to the tech-savvy and carbon-conscious students who fill the classrooms and dorms, universities are held to some of the highest standards of accountability, with no room for downtime. And while some of the more illustrious universities can claim to be on the cutting edge of energy autonomy, most still struggle with being able to manage campus systems existing of aging, legacy energy assets and buildings that are hundreds of years old to new state-of-the-art, next-gen green buildings and Distributed Energy Resources.

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Topics: Behind-the-meter connectivity, DERs, Building Automation Systems, Photovoltaic (PV) Systems

IT/OT Convergence in Energy Management

Posted by Kimberly Getgen on Aug 24, 2017 1:42:00 PM

At Blue Pillar, we’ve found that creating a close partnership between IT managers and the energy/facility department is key to creating a successful Energy IoT program. These two groups form a team that works to connect every energy asset the business, hospital, or data center may have into a singular, centralized platform.

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Topics: Centralized Facility Management, Behind-the-meter connectivity, Cybersecurity, Energy IoT, IT Infrastructure

Energy Network of Things Video Series: How a Proven, Automated Approach Makes a Big Difference when Delivering Energy IoT

Posted by Eric Reichel, Vice President Product & Operations on Aug 8, 2017 3:02:31 PM

WATCH VIDEO

Whenever we’re out and about in the energy industry, everyone always wants to know what makes Blue Pillar different. One of the first things I like to point out is that there are many different players in the field promoting different kinds of energy or “IoT” systems, like building automation systems based on SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition). What we call “buzzword compliant” systems do a great job checking off all the boxes on what they can do for a commercial or industrial facility, but are they really as easy to deploy as they claim to be?

Blue Pillar takes a very different approach when it comes to deployment and have done so from the beginning. Unlike traditional solutions that have required customized SCADA development, Blue Pillar drives a software-based automated approach that is self-configurable and requires no development. We start off every new project by repeating the same process we’ve used to connect the previous 5,000 assets over our 10-year history. Inevitably, the new “Energy Thing” we are trying to connect is probably something we’ve already connected in our past and available in our asset library. This is how we drive a lower cost and faster time to value for our deployments.

In this automated approach, deployments start with a very simple site survey, where we capture all the relevant information from the new “Energy Thing” we are trying to connect and at the push of a button can prescribe a self-configurable, best fit, behind-the-meter energy controls network.  The outcome of the survey process (which can take only a few minutes to hours depending on size of the campus) delivers everything our customers need to know from communications to one line diagrams so they can see right away what we’re going to do, how it’s going to be done, and most importantly, how much it’s going to cost.

Because we’ve gotten the site survey process down to a science, working with Blue Pillar is really a zero-risk proposition because customers know exactly what they’re going to get, and we can prove it with the extensive list of “Energy Things” we’ve previously connected. Customers pay once deployment is commissioned (not before). And nearly every customer we’ve deployed has expanded their footprint beyond their initial scope. We’re not a “won and done” company.  We strive to deliver the best customer satisfaction ratings following net promoter and customer survey data closely. We study the feedback we receive from our customers, and work towards continual improvement and innovation to continue to make the prescription and installation of the network faster, better and more affordable.

So, when I am asked “Why Blue Pillar”, I like to say thanks to our automated, self-configurable deployment process and ability to prescribe best-fit networks quickly, we can share lessons learned to save money, reduce deployment costs and derive faster time to value better than anyone in the industry.

But this is just one of the many things that makes us different from other companies. Watch this 2-minute video to learn more about Blue Pillar’s unique competitive advantage. Or, follow us on LinkedIn to stay in touch and learn more about how Blue Pillar is different.

 

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Topics: Facility Management, Videos, Behind-the-meter connectivity, Energy Efficiency, Energy IoT, Grid Edge, Energy Network-as-a-Service

Energy Network of Things Video Series: The Benefit of Taking a Phased Deployment Approach

Posted by Eric Reichel, Vice President Product & Operations on Aug 1, 2017 2:00:00 PM

WATCH VIDEO

In our Energy Network of Things video series, my co-founder Brad Witter explores where the rubber meets the road for our customers by taking a phased approached to deployment. Often, we work with customers that have lots of assets, lots of “Energy Things™” and they can be spread out over various buildings in a campus or across different geographies or countries. Trying to tackle everything at once can feel overwhelming or risky. But getting started is as easy as breaking deployments down into a phased approach and unlocking the value toward an ROI that allows a customer to start their next deployment or project with Blue Pillar.

When working with a new customer, we like to break the process of planning and integration into five simple steps:

Phase I: “I have a problem”. First, our customer establishes a set of assets to be connected to unlock a value stream. This initial project can range from a single building to several sites based on the size and deployment scope. Our customer can then determine what value propositions they want to unlock, such as emergency preparedness and response, energy management, or DER integration for the purposes of a microgrid or DERMs enablement. From there, Blue Pillar completes a work schedule to roll out the project on-time and on-budget, giving our customers exactly what they expected.

Phase II: Where else can we take this? Once “Energy Things” are connected and data is being provided in real-time through our platform or OpenAPI to a third-party software provider, our customers are armed with the knowledge of their current state. Now they can understand the value of Blue Pillar’s platform once it’s in operation and extend it to other buildings that could benefit from harnessing similar value streams.

Phase III: Thinking outside the box. Once assets are connected and data is visualized, customers are learning a lot and finally able to measure and verify the results of their energy management programs. Inevitably, they begin finding adjacent value streams that could be unlocked, measured, or verified with Blue Pillar’s platform. During the process, we may have found stranded assets or outdated systems that are not communicating data anymore. These can be good areas to attack and embrace to continue to drive value and ROI from the Blue Pillar system.

Phase IV: “Getting creative.” Now that the customer is applying what Blue Pillar can do in new ways, the sky’s the limit. Additional value can be gained by incorporating other systems and assets into a centralized and accessible network. For example, many of our hospital customers may have started with the emergency power and supply systems to meet compliance and avoid outages. But adding in new assets like meters (water, gas and electric) or new DERs like solar or energy storage are equally compelling. With this, it is possible to think about reducing energy costs, eliminating energy waste and meeting sustainability goals.

Final Phase: "All-In". As all “Energy Things” become connected into a single, ubiquitous network, the business can become more responsive to real-time energy demand, costs and situations and react accordingly. This is the future of energy and by creating the connective tissue, it is now possible to continue to add new value or services offered by your utility or energy provider into the platform. Adding a new capability is as easy as plugging in a new third-party service or application, and data and control from assets are universally applied through our OpenAPI to offer new capabilities. The solution is future-proof and extensible. It is also possible to replace older software or add new things into the Blue Pillar platform automatically, without causing problems or starting over with customized development. Simply add-on to the system over time and continue to drive a history of energy use, measure and verify suitability goals or drive responsive demand management or microgrid projects.

Learn more about what the Blue Pillar difference looks like by watching other Energy Network of Things videos in the series, and Follow Us on LinkedIn!

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Topics: Videos, Behind-the-meter connectivity, Energy Efficiency, Energy IoT, Grid Edge, Energy Network-as-a-Service