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issue: November 2007 APPLIANCE Magazine

44th Annual Report on HVAC
Raising the Roof


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Lennox collaborated with Emerson’s Computer Process Controls (CPC) division to develop an integrated monitoring system to provide more efficient operation and comfort, all with remote monitoring with Emerson’s E2 management system and interface. The system is offered on the L series (pictured) and S-Class rooftop units.

Lennox Industries Inc. (Dallas, TX, U.S.) wanted to differentiate its L series and S-Class rooftop units, and saw an opportunity to do so with technology from supplier Emerson Climate Technologies.

Lennox already shared several customers with Emerson and saw potential for the two companies to collaborate to provide a larger control system integrating HVAC and other building systems. The collaboration with Emerson’s Computer Process Controls (CPC) division resulted in an HVAC control on Lennox’s rooftop unit that provides direct and remote communication to Emerson’s enterprise management system, the E2 Intelligent Store controller.

The technology works with Lennox’s Integrated Modular Controller (IMC), which is standard on the L series and S-Class units, and provides easy control with more than 100 diagnostic codes and 200 configurable parameters for multiple units and custom applications.

The companies achieved direct communication between the IMC controller and CPC’s E2 energy management system through a shared system language, or protocol. The IMC passes information to the E2, including set points, sensor inputs, and alarms. This information can be viewed on the E2 itself or remotely using a PC, where analysis can take place and unit settings can be adjusted, operating parameters can be adjusted, or the controller can be reset.

“The E2 directly connects to the IMC and automatically loads the appropriate status and diagnostic information,” explains John Wallace, director product management, Emerson Climate Technologies—Retail Solutions. “This is updated in real time to the E2, where a technician can check the E2 itself or remotely via PC to check the status of the unit and determine if it needs service and fix the problem without dispatching a technician to the site.”

After a year of development, the unit was released in March 2006. Lennox says the partnership allowed the company to raise its premium line of AC units to a whole new level. “This feature allowed us to differentiate our product offering in a way that provides added value to our customers,” Mark Hess, product manager for commercial control at Lennox, tells APPLIANCE. Lennox says it will continue to make improvements to the interface by way of software improvements developed with CPC.

 

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