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Prototype indoor climate system developed by local company CollabWorx Inc. enables user to control personal environmental preferences via the Web
Prototype indoor climate system developed by local company CollabWorx Inc. enables user to control personal environmental preferences via the WebJune 25, 2007Tiffany Ann Galvintagalvin@syr.edu
CollabWorx Inc. and collaborators from the Syracuse Center of Excellence in Environmental and Energy Systems (Syracuse CoE) and Syracuse University demonstrated today at the Syracuse Technology Garden a working prototype of an indoor climate control system that has the ability to make “smart” decisions in response to changing conditions within an office or building based on interaction with the human occupants.
The Open Web Services-based Indoor Climate Control System technology allows individuals to communicate, monitor and adjust their personal environmental preferences (temperature, light, humidity, etc.) much like they would in an automobile, via the Web. The system is equipped with an occupancy sensor that recognizes the presence and identity of the individual. A built-in expert system can make decisions based on data from multiple sources so that the system can alter its activity to conserve energy while maintaining users’ comfort. The Syracuse CoE provided $350,000 in funding to develop the technology.
In today’s demonstration, researchers unveiled the system’s first working prototype, which consists of three typical cubicle workstations with system components connected to desktop computers. The system components include a main unit, manual control device, network interface controller unit, small vents and a heater unit. The prototype uses only pervasive Internet-related technologies, including Internet Protocol-based sensors and device controllers developed by Sensyr LLC , another local company and a partner in the project.
Researchers plan to deploy the three-cubicle working prototype into a full-scale, real-world office setting as part of the new test lab areas being built at SU or at the Syracuse CoE headquarters, where occupants will operate the system and researchers will document system performance and energy savings. This trial will allow for subsequent commercialization of the technology.
CollabWorx’s description of the climate control system was one of three winners of the Best Poster Award at the international “Clima 2007” conference in Helsinki, Finland, on June 14. The CollabWorx entry was selected from 206 entries from 33 countries that competed for the award.
CollabWorx emerged from the New York State Center for Advanced Technology in Computer Applications and Software Engineering (CASE Center) at Syracuse University, where it started as an incubator company in 2000. Today, CollabWorx is based in the Syracuse Technology Garden with additional offices in the New York City metropolitan area and in Virginia, and employs 15 people.
The company provides secure, high-performance and multi-platform solutions that allow companies to improve operational efficiency and reduce operating expenditures through enhanced inter-company and partner communications, collaboration, and distance learning and training. CollabWorx provides its advanced technology and support to resellers, leading federal and commercial customers, and universities in the United States and Europe. Its customers include the U.S. Army, the Defense Language Institute, CA (Computer Associates), SAIC, Computer Science Corp., Raytheon, C2 Technologies, and Syracuse’s MetroNet and Progressive Expert Consulting providers of network services.
“We are delighted to learn of the international recognition received by Marek Podgorny and his Collabworx team in collaboration with the Center of Excellence and Syracuse University,” says Greater Syracuse Chamber of Commerce President Darlene Kerr. “Their demonstration of a prototype of software and hardware supporting the control and monitoring of a Smart Building ecosphere is further evidence of the world-class research and development occurring right here in Syracuse that will make a major difference in the development of energy conservation methods.”
“It is very exciting to see a Technology Garden company recognized internationally,” says Syracuse Technology Garden Executive Director Paul Brooks. “Marek and his team have made great progress here at the Syracuse Technology Garden, building on the great start they got at the CASE Center at Syracuse University. We are very proud of these accomplishments. The spirit of technology collaboration that is developing in Central New York will yield economic development benefits in the future.”
“Collabworx personifies the mission of the CASE Center,” says Gina Lee-Glauser, CASE Center director and associate vice president for research at Syracuse University. “Marek Podgorny is to be commended on his leadership that has resulted in: Department of Defense contracts for web-based communication systems, the CLIMA 2007 award for the Smart Building Ecosphere, ongoing research in building management systems, and the generation of 15 jobs in Syracuse.”
“Bringing innovations from world-class research into the marketplace to stimulate local economic growth is core to the mission of the Syracuse Center of Excellence,” says Syracuse CoE Executive Director Edward Bogucz. “This innovative work by CollabWorx, and the international recognition, is a stellar example of our mission in action–to contribute to the local economy and to help solve pressing issues, such as global warming, through efficient use of energy in buildings.”
The CASE Center (http://www.case.syr.edu) at Syracuse University, a research organization with an economic development focus, is funded primarily by the New York State Office of Science, Technology and Academic Research (NYSTAR). CASE is a key contributor to the high-technology economy of New York state by making available the resources of SU and collaborating with New York state businesses and economic development organizations. Key components of the CASE program include incubation of start-up and early-stage information technology businesses and active involvement in applied research, product development and process improvement with businesses of all types and sizes.
The Syracuse Technology Garden (http://www.syracusetechnologygarden.com) is a high-tech business incubator facility. Located in downtown Syracuse, the $3.5 million specially constructed facility covers 33,000 square feet and is a regular gathering spot for aspiring entrepreneurs, early stage investors and creative individuals seeking to connect with others to share their passion for technology and business. Its mission is stimulating high-tech entrepreneurship, fostering the development of emerging growth companies, and supporting the process of technology commercialization. In addition to facilitating the growth and development of early stage technology companies, the Technology Garden offers its facilities to the public for use for meetings, conferences and gatherings.
The Syracuse CoE (http://www.syracusecoe.org) is a federation of 12 academic and research institutions and more than 140 firms and organizations that collaborate to create innovations to improve built and urban environments. Partners in the Syracuse CoE collaborate in research, development and education projects relating to clean and renewable energy, indoor environmental quality and water resources.
The Greater Syracuse Chamber of Commerce (http://www.syracusechamber.com), founded in 1889, is the largest business organization in Central New York representing more than 2,200 businesses of all sizes and from virtually every industry and profession in the area. Led by a prestigious compilation of charismatic and respected business men and women, its mission is to create an economic climate that enhances growth, prosperity and the quality of life for all who live and work in Greater Syracuse. The Chamber is an icon in the Syracuse business community, offering business assistance and development programs to local businesses, and leading the way in everything from government relations and lobbying to creating economic growth in the Central New York region, and empowering business owners to accomplish collectively what they cannot accomplish individually, while enhancing their credibility as a viable member of the business community.