World’s largest indoor aquarium leverages smart connectivity
Many U.S. buildings are 40 to 50 years old, and owners bear the burden of upgrading building systems to gain efficiencies and lower energy consumption. But what about buildings with unique requirements?
Launched in 1930, Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium is a national landmark and the world’s largest indoor aquarium. With more than 32,000 animals housed within seven unique environments, and countless thousands of annual visitors, keeping everyone – and everything – comfortable is a challenging objective.
Behind the scenes, the Schneider Electric EcoStruxure™ solution plays a significant role in the operations of the venue – from lighting, water management, and animal life support systems to HVAC control, security, cloud services, and more, all with a concentration on sustainability.
A historic landmark, with the benefits of today’s smart building solutions
Granted, Shedd Aquarium isn’t an office building, hospital, or factory – after all, the facility contains 5 million gallons of water. But in terms of building management, the aquarium’s systems have evolved, and, like any other nonresidential building, that presents an energy dilemma. Facility staff must find ways to reduce energy consumption and protect the environment while improving operations and maintenance.
With that in mind, Shedd keeps a sharp focus on sustainability. Facility leaders have launched an energy reduction strategy to reduce their pull on the electricity grid. They based the strategy on the future-forward Energy 2020 Roadmap, which resulted from a partnership with the city of Chicago, Illinois Science and Technology Coalition, Institute for Sustainable Energy Development, and Citizens Utility Board.
Working with Schneider Electric, Shedd has enacted efficiency measures such as turnkey solar services, LED lighting updates, and new smart sub-meters for the electricity management system, enabling analysis of real-time energy data for better energy decisions.
Throughout the facility’s seven diverse, temperature-sensitive environments, smart devices help manage efficiency. From water-conserving pump controls and eco-friendly gardens to maintaining the food its inhabitants eat, all aspects of Shedd’s energy use are optimized.
These efforts are part of the aquarium’s initiative to achieve a 50% reduction in energy use by 2020 – a goal that is becoming increasingly attainable with every improvement made at the venue.
EcoStruxure is how Schneider Electric delivers Innovation At Every Level for sustainable, efficient structures, bringing a powerful, connected approach to any building.