The Smart Building concept includes private LoRaWAN® network management and seamless integration with Microsoft IoT Hub at scale, provided by Actility’s ThingPark Enterprise platform.
Press Release – Paris, France & Amsterdam, Netherlands – September 2d, 2021
Beyond Eyes, a brand initiated by Heijmans N.V., a major Dutch construction-services business, founded in 1923, with CSU Cleaning Services BV, deployed over 20,000 LoRaWAN-connected IoT sensors for Heijmans’ clients in the Netherlands, as part of their innovative Smart Building concept. Beyond Eyes uses wireless sensors from CLICKEY to collect anonymous data on a building’s utilization, occupation, usage, and indoor environment. Smart Building sensors are then connected through the private LoRaWAN® IoT network managed on Actility’s ThingPark® Enterprise IoT platform, where data is aggregated and then forwarded to Microsoft Azure IoT Hub using using ThingPark Enterprise Azure connector.
Heijmans is an innovative player in the construction industry. In 2017,together with CSU Facility Management, the company initiated Beyond Eyes, a smart data-driven service which collects data in buildings, then combines that data with smart technology to achieve the business objectives of building owners and property managers. Beyond Eyes is committed to sustainable, smart, safe, and healthy work environments, it currently provides smart building solutions throughout the Netherlands, with a plan to expand their solution, which focuses on health, welfare, and productivity of the end-users, worldwide. Beyond Eyes Smart Building Solutions leverage CLICKEY Solutions and Actility IoT technology and expertise. CLICKEY, an IoT product and ecosystem development company founded in 2013, is an early adopter of LoRa radio technology. For Smart Building Solutions, they provide a suite of plug-and-play sensors which can be easily integrated into existing building-management systems:
Each of these sensors, which can be mounted under desks, walls, and ceilings have a unique ID number, and are wirelessly connected to a software system, using LoRaWAN network. The collected anonymous data is then sent to the Cloud where it can be analyzed and visualized via an online platform. Clients gain access and insights from their data through a variety of front-end applications.
The sensors constantly measure activities and circumstances important for office locations, such as: space occupation, traffic to and from the building, comfort, and air quality (temperature, CO2 levels, light intensity, humidity, noise level). Information from various building environments and locations is sent to Actility’s LoRaWAN network server, where it comes together on the Microsoft Azure platform in the cloud. This is where data security and management occur, after which the aggregated data is made accessible on a dedicated application. Actility enables a seamless, industrial grade integration between ThingPark Enterprise LoRaWAN networks and Azure IoT as well as IoT Central, allowing large scale IoT projects deployment in a record time.
ThingPark Enterprise is a LoRaWAN IoT connectivity management platform that helps customers build network infrastructure by managing LoRaWAN gateways, add new LoRaWAN devices, monitor network operations, and control the flow of data to application servers.
Beyond Eyes infrastructure is developed on Azure. The IoT hub ingests data which is then processed in Azure Digital Twins v2 (Beyond Eyes also participated in the private preview of ADTV1). Dynamics 365 is used as an implementation tool and to record the building structure. Furthermore, a variety of other Microsoft Azure functions are used, for example Azure app plans.
Beyond Eyes Smart Building solutions provide insight into the performance and use of a building which ultimately leads to process, staffing and building improvements to enable cost savings. The solution is suitable across a wide variety of building types: including offices, museums, universities, hospitals, stadiums, and other organizations.
Beyond Eyes Smart Building Solutions provides benefits to four end-users:
LoRaWAN® is widely used wireless protocol that allows battery-operated devices to communicate with IoT applications via long-range, wireless connections, allowing longer battery life, thus lowering the cost of device ownership. LoRaWAN® is especially useful in large-scale deployments because of its availability, cost, and reach, due to its use of unlicensed spectrum, the availability of standardized, low-cost modules with long battery life. Actility provides the LoRaWAN® network server and a highly reliable and advanced IoT platform for network management – ThingPark™, already powering the vast majority (over 50) of public nationwide LoRaWAN® deployments and hundreds of companies worldwide. ThingPark Enterprise is specifically designed for enterprises: it’s simple, scalable and easy way to operate, and offers a unique low power IoT communication infrastructure to enable an infinite number of industrial use cases.
LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Network) connectivity like LoRaWAN is an important enabler for Azure IoT, as it provides integrators with a tool to wirelessly capture data “over the top” directly from the sensor, without a need to adapt to intermediary systems or concentrators. It is the ideal tool to rapidly add new sensors to an existing installation or to retrofit existing buildings. For example, it is possible to implement air quality measurements in an entire building without a need for any wiring.
The LPWAN network can collect data from native LoRaWAN sensors but can also wirelessly connect to most legacy wired interfaces like ModBus, mBus or RS485 systems, and of course digital, analogue and pulse I/Os. Connectors between LPWAN networks and Azure IoT are key to the overall performance and stability of the system.
“With our partners CLICKEY and Actility, we managed to build efficient IoT solutions with a seamless integration of thousands of connected devices over a large mission critical LoRaWAN network, and our application fully leverages the scalability and analytics performance of Azure IoT. With our solutions, we make buildings management more sustainable and people happier”
said Jeroen Groenen, Manager of Beyond Eyes.
“Together with Actility and Beyond Eyes, we have been able to take bigger steps into the world of smart buildings. Our goal is that the solutions created can make work life easier, more comfortable and safer”
said Pedro de Smit, CEO of CLICKEY solutions.
“Beyond Eyes is designed to enable organizations to bring employees back to physical workplaces safely. Actility looks forward to capitalizing on this collaboration with, Beyond Eyes, CLICKEY and Microsoft to jointly develop scalable IoT solutions that are seamlessly integrated and designed for fast deployment and industrial grade stability”
said Olivier Hersent, CEO at Actility.
“At its heart the Beyond Eyes solution utilizes Azure Digital Twins and Microsoft Dynamics 365 to help workers get back to the office safely and at the same time, help those who are providing workspaces more efficiently manage their properties. It has been great working with Actility to make sure that the power of LoRa technology can be utilized by Azure solution builders. By using Digital Twins and Dynamics, Beyond Eyes can digitally model the structure of a building with all its properties. Using sensor data, they can visualize in real-time how the building is performing, how it is being used, and how to optimize it across multiple use cases”
explained Tony Shakib, Partner General Manager, Azure IoT Business Acceleration at Microsoft
Beyond Eyes believes that everyone has the right to a healthy, safe and sustainable (working) environment through smarter buildings. We achieve this through the combination of smart technology, data, advice & implementation. Our services are the smart eyes of your property. A technological addition that reaches further than the human eye can see. We see where cleaning needs to be done, which rooms are occupied, where air quality needs to be optimized and where energy can be saved.
CLICKEY solutions already existed since 2012, it originally started under the name Invenit BV. We are proud to say that CLICKEY solutions is one of the ‘founding fathers’ of the new standards for IoT networks. Everything based on the idea that connecting things to the internet needs to happen without expensive (data) subscriptions, big battery packages and traditional SIM-based communication components. In addition to being a manufacturer of various standard IoT solutions, CLICKEY solutions is also a product development company where customized solutions are made. CLICKEY solutions is based in Raamsdonksveer, the place where our smart and creative ideas for new IoT solutions are developed.
Actility is a world leader in Low-Power Wide-Area Networks (LPWAN) industrial-grade connectivity solutions for the Internet of Things. Actility provides its ThingPark™ platform and network technology to deploy, operate and maintain public and private wireless IoT networks within a unified, scalable and versatile network infrastructure. The vast majority of nationwide LoRaWAN® network service providers (over 50) and hundreds of companies trust ThingPark™ all over the world. Through its subsidiary Abeeway, Actility also provides patented ultra-low power tracking solutions. ThingPark Market offers the largest selection of interoperable IoT gateways, devices and applications to simplify and accelerate deployment of use cases.
Contact us here: https://www.actility.com/contact
Learn more about the LoRaWAN technology by downloading the Actility “What is LoRaWAN” white paper