Here's what's happening.
Aug 23 2020
Pelican Smart Thermostat Site Manager
Commercial HVAC equipment is a huge energy user in Chicago – cooling in the summer and heating in the winter. Sensors, controls, and smart thermostats are essential to optimize equipment usage, and the Pelican smart thermostat is by far the most advanced system for small commercial users. While the platform is not as pretty as the Nest, or as universal in application as the Ecobee EMS Smart Building platform – it outperforms both of them in terms of pure data transparency.
Our company offers three commercial smart thermostat products to our clients, which are typically Fire Stations, McDonalds and Libraries. For some of the applications, the Pelican system can outperform the other systems and makes a great retrofit of an existing rooftop unit that is 5-10 years old. This article will focus on the site manager, which is the online platform for the Pelican system.
Pelican System Economizer Setting
The pelican system has the most robust amount of information, including how an economizer is functioning. I was once told by our local utility that up to 70% of economizers on the market are not working property – so the pelican has the advantage of showing the economizer and its placement. This is because the thermostat can easily be linked to an economizer Pearl module made by Pelican, which controls the thermostat.
As you can see from the below image, I can see the exact economizer setting for the past day in my building. The economizer is set at 0% throughout the day until around 2pm, when the CO2 sensor is detecting a level higher than our setting. This is what we want (keeping the economizer closed as much as possible) because the outside air is hot and humid.
Intake temperature setting
Another feature that is really impressive on the Pelican is that granular data of supply, return and outside air temperature. This is always something that I have wondered and wanted to know with systems of our commercial clients.
The amount of data this shares with a business owner about how their system is working is incredible. Is the system properly cooling? Is the economizer bringing in too much outside air and making it difficult to keep up? Is the programmed settings right for the space?
I tend to dig right into the most important part of a system, so I skipped past what most people want to see. The general system is easy to access, and does not cost a monthly fee (a huge advantage over the Ecobee SmartBuildings Platform).
You can link tons of thermostats on the same login, making this great for franchise owners with lots of locations, or business owners with lots of buildings and thermostats.
While there is not an app for this, you can access through a desktop or mobile browser very easily. Not the most impressive from a design standpoint, but the data is great.
I won’t go into every setting on the admin portal, but it is intense. You can control a lot of things from the dashboard, and in fact, it is better than the control form the RTU.
The economizer is what excites me the most from an energy efficiency perspective. The system allows you to set the minimum setting on the economizer (I have ours set at 0%) and the maximum setting. This will allow fresh air to come in at the amount you control and can visualize -vs the factory setting on your equipment.
When installing this system in our office, we installed the TS250. This includes the CO2 sensor for demand control ventilation. We did not include the humidity sensor, which comes on the TS250H. I will recommend that to our clients in the future, as there is a lot of value know the humidity point in your space.
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