CO2 reduction in practice – networked energy systems combine comfort with climate protection
Viessmann, a company of long-standing tradition and a member of the EnOcean Alliance, supports customers all over the world with seamless climate-friendly solutions that supply optimal room temperature, hot water, electricity and good air quality in equal measure for human environments. In the future, all systems will be networked via the Microsoft Azure cloud platform, making them even more efficient and comfortable to operate. The wibutler system, which supports the EnOcean wireless standard, is part of the Viessmann solution.
The pending energy transition can be managed only with future-oriented energy systems. Networked and smart devices are almost indispensable in this regard. Viessmann therefore wanted to combine more than 100,000 devices that are managed from 150 control interfaces. The company also faced the challenge of retrofitting a complete range of products that have been in operation since 2004 and making them part of the overall solution.
IoT platform based on Microsoft Azure
At its heart, the solution consists of a scalable microservice architecture based on Kubernetes and Azure Service Fabric, which enables Viessmann to respond quickly and flexibly to changes and customer or partner requests. Another key element is the use of Azure IoT Hub for the secure and reliable connection of and communication between the devices and the cloud. All Viessmann heating systems that have been launched since 2004 are being retrofitted for communication with IoT Hub, and new equipment generations will be connected directly to the IoT platform. The use of Azure IoT Hub enables Viessmann to react flexibly to the growing number of devices and the increasing volume of telemetry data.
Remote access to the heating controller
The new system has been in use since June 2018 and offers remote services for heating control, among other things. Based on the example of the cross-vendor wibutler system, which Viessmann has purchased and which supports the EnOcean wireless standard, heat pumps, for example, can be controlled in the smart home platform. With the aid of wibutler, installers and end users can set heating times and desired temperatures, among other things, right on their smartphones. The compatible heat pumps can also be networked with a large number of devices from other manufacturers and be automated collectively. For example, a temperature sensor measures the current room temperature for demand-driven individual room control. wibutler subsequently determines the exact heat requirements of the particular room and automatically transfers them to the Viessmann heat pump, so that only the heat really needed is generated.
Predictive maintenance of the heating system
At the same time, the initial predictive maintenance trials are in progress. Viessmann evaluates the data from the devices with the Microsoft Azure cloud platform and a wide range of artificial intelligence tools and looks for certain patterns that can identify the need for maintenance. For example, if a heating burner cycles more often than necessary, this indicates that it is dirty, which may result in failure. The installer receives a notification and can intervene before the installation breaks down.