Building Automation System


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Environmental monitoring is ubiquitous in the Food and Beverage and Pharmaceutical industries, as the products have environmental production and storage requirements. Manufacturing facilities have sensors that report environmental conditions to a central data repository and a supervisory system that presents these readings to users and alerts them to out-of-tolerance conditions. This type of system is usually referred to as an Environmental Monitoring System (EMS) or Building Automation System (BAS). Features include:

  • Cloud-based environmental monitoring and alarming system for the Life Sciences and Food and Beverages industries
  • Handles data collection, processing, alarming, and notification
  • Built on Amazon Web Services (AWS), specifically the EC2 and RDS, as well as other services for load balancing, caching, VPN/Security, and email delivery
  • 21 CFR Part 11 ready solution – meets the technical requirements for compliance and uses encryption to satisfy the requirements of an “open system”
  • Subscription-based service, end-to-end, from installation, through on-going support, to periodic sensor calibration
  • Light-weight deployment on site – the infrastructure is in the cloud – all you need is a connection to the internet
  • Leverages industry-standard components: PLCs installed in industrial electrical cabinets (NEMA 12, NEMA 4X and others)
  • Notification can be via SMS, email or voice – 24×7, 365 days a year

Grantek’s life sciences customers requested a light-weight, cloud-based, scalable version of these Building Automation Systems, so we created Guardian to meet their needs and the needs of other clients in the industry as well as the Food and Beverage vertical. Guardian provides environmental monitoring, alarming and notification capabilities but does not include the building controls included with a full BAS system. Guardian is a smaller, more affordable way to monitor environmental conditions without also having to replace your existing HVAC controls.

Environment Monitoring

Grantek also fully understands the regulatory environment in which your company operates and so we designed and built a product capable of collecting and storing data from a facility’s environment monitoring system to archive accurate records of environmental conditions.

Grantek’s Guardian, consists of calibratable environmental sensors that send data to a PLC, which collects it and sends it over the internet to a central repository for action (if needed) and archiving. Grantek’s Guardian has a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) application component which we created to collect, archive, report, alert and alarm environmental conditions. Guardian is a Web-based system that utilizes onsite hardware to collect environmental data from sensors.

Guardian takes the place of older paper-based temperature and humidity recording equipment, which relies on human intervention to change the chart paper and properly store the daily charts. Why rely on a manual process when it can easily be replaced with automated data collection and reporting? Your plant maintenance staff will appreciate not having to change chart paper any longer.

Guardian can even be used for environment monitoring of mobile equipment such as snowplows and refrigerated trailers equipped with GPS and it can be used to drive marquee displays in or outside of a facility to provide highly visible variable information to employees.

Guardian can accept a wide variety of inputs, including analog or digital, 4-20 mA temperature sensors, GPS, fire alarm systems, fan sensors, power monitoring signals, and weather station data.

Guardian also has an alerting function to notify designated email addresses, send SMS messages, or trigger telephone calls if a sensor input is out of bounds. Telephone alerts are sent to a call center and a human then places the call to the appropriate predefined contact.

Furthermore to ensure that data to the Guardian system is accurate, Grantek offers an annual or semi-annual calibration exchange package, wherein a facility exchanges their sensors for newly-calibrated sensors on an annual basis. Grantek understands the requirements of a quality management system and helps customers comply by helping to ensure that the environmental sensors remain within calibration at all times.

Because Grantek designed and built Guardian, you are not dependent on 3rd parties to maintain it – it’s one less thing your company has to worry about. Our annual subscription fee includes support and validation.

The Guardian system can be configured to meet your enterprise’s specific needs. Guardian’s onsite hardware runs on an embedded Linux-based Communications Control Unit (CCU). This dedicated computer connects directly to the environment monitoring system and accepts digital and analog inputs. Guardian was developed by Grantek from the ground-up to satisfy regulatory environmental requirements and so has a built-in audit trailing, to record access and changes by personnel.

Building Management Systems

Grantek built Guardian with security as a top priority. Data is encrypted and locked down. The data collection PLCs are password-protected, read-only, and firewalled to help prevent unauthorized access to the Guardian system.

As companies strive to operate as a seamless whole, environmental data provided by building management systems is as important as any other data produced. It may be of utmost value in the event that an issue regarding how your product was produced or stored threatens a recall. Archiving your environmental data can save money and help protect the company’s reputation.

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