Comfort, Health, and Energy – Finding the New Balance
First of all, I do lead automated logic, our controls business. You'll see this as a Carrier slide. That might be a head-scratcher. Let me describe, don't worry, it's just one slide on what Carrier is. Carrier was spun out as an independent public company from United Technologies about a year-and-a-half ago. What people may not know is that Carrier, in addition to having an HVAC business, which is the HVAC brand that you all know, we also have quite a significant security of business life, safety, of building automation and even refrigeration.
A lot of work going on with farm to fork activities as well. I lead the building automation column here at Carrier Corporation, including leadership of our automated logic, web control, building automation brands, and Abound, our new building IoT platform. That's where I fit in the scheme of things. I threw out as I was preparing for this, I thought I'd just think about what's my premise here.
My premise is that people will return to the office, they will return to work because I think their social. We want to work directly with people and so forth. Quite frankly, I'm in the building businesses so I hope they come back. I'm a little optimistic. But look, our perception of indoor spaces has clearly changed. Now, buildings have to compete with your home.
Most people would rather be at home in their slippers than going into the office. That's what buildings have to compete with. You need to be attractive. Employees need a reason to go to their office and the office need to be comfortable, healthy, engaging spaces. There's competition.
You need to have a reason to bring people back or to get back to the office. Yet of course, they have to be affordable, efficient, sustainable. Those three pieces will be the balancing act that I'll talk about more. Indoor environments matter more than ever.
A lot of changing perceptions as the speakers have talked about earlier, it's not just COVID, it's things like air quality, forest fires, climate, activity. We're starting to see that actually in surveys and so forth. People are starting to say, the occupants and buildings are starting to say that their perception of the building actually matters, which is very important.
I mean, it used to be not that long ago that the only time people cared about their building systems are when they're hot or cold, which is this triad I call it here around balancing among these three things. This is the challenge today is finding this new balance, because again, early days of the industry and HVAC is around having people be comfortable. Then when I started my career about 30 years ago in the industry, I've spent my career in that energy and sustainability piece. Now it's really shifting to even in higher-order set of needs, which is health and wellness. They conflict. I remember my very first job, internship, University of Wisconsin doing Department of Energy, energy conservation grants, reviewing these things for schools and hospitals and stuff.
The first thing we would do when a ECM came through is we look and sure enough, they'd always cut the outdoor airflow in half. That was the first thing everybody did, just cut the outdoor airflow, which obviously impacts health and wellness. We've learned that lesson, it saves energy. To find that balance is going to be really critical. I'm going to spend a fair amount of my time talking about that lower-right quadrant since you're already all experts on the rest of this stuff.
I'm going to draw from my talk, quite a bit of material from Dr. Allen, from the Harvard School of Public Health. You may be familiar with his work already, you wrote this book, Healthy Buildings. I think it's pretty well-known in the industry.
Full disclosure, Carrier and our team has done quite a bit of partnership work with the school and with him on some of this research. He does ask the compelling question, why are we ignoring the 90 percent? Which I find really interesting and compelling. The 90 percent, of course, being the amount of time we spend indoors. Of course, we know why we've been ignoring it.
It's partly awareness. If you don't think about it, it's not a big deal. It's also economics. We talked about it earlier today.
Several of the speakers talked about the energy efficiency piece versus the cost of people in the space. Our industry is really focused on the smallest percentage, which is a utility bill, rather than either the revenue, generating income potential of the building, the salaries of the people, etc. That's what's behind it. Anyway, a lot of
research in this area has been done in the last few years, has really come of age. The foundations of healthy buildings, this framework that team came up with, I think it's pretty consistent with frameworks for either from WELL or Fitwel, RESET, others plus or minus one or two parameters. The concept is similar. Thinking about all the pieces in a building that keep us healthy: ventilation, air quality, etc, there's strategies around all of these. But what I think is most interesting recently and what I've been thinking about a lot is a thing that runs across many of these, and that's air.
This idea of discovering or rediscovering indoor air and what it means for our industry. Let me talk a little bit more about that. I read this newspaper article and I'll dwell here a little bit so you can read it. This is actually originating from The New York Times. I actually read it in the Atlanta paper where I'm locally here.
When I read this, I was like, wow, things are changing. A lot of different dimensions. First of all, as an engineer, I was like, wow, parents talking about CO_2.
CO_2 is a pretty esoteric control concept. Remember all the battles we had about DCV and what levels are right and so forth? Now parents are starting to speak the language. That was observation number 1.
Observation number 2, this awareness around what it actually means, sending these things in with their children into school. Now, the next observation, this other blue circle I did here, the technology implications. This is possible because of technology. These portable IAQ sensors for 100 bucks, they are a reality, you can get them on Amazon. There's this technology/IOT piece, which by the way, I think really illustrates implications to the building automation industry more generally, because we're used to these static sensors wired to a wall.
But technology is at the point now where the human sensors in the building that are dynamic and moving and so forth add a lot of new interesting capabilities. This is just one example. Then finally the last box, the story of the wake-up call for the industry. "It's possible that the school district may not be all that happy about this."
Really? "I think it's because it gives us a window into the fact that they may not actually be treating ventilation very seriously." As I read that, I was like, I'd hate to be that principle or that facility manager and so forth getting those telephone calls. It's a little bit of a crazy time right now. It's a scary time for facility managers, building owners, schools, and so forth. But one thing is clear, awareness is at all-time high when it comes to air quality in a building. I'm going to talk just briefly about COVID response because this is very well-documented.
I like this letter. I pulled this letter. It's a public letter, December 22nd, from Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security. A couple of highlights. Again, the other speakers have talked to it, but COVID is now known as primarily an airborne disease. I'll call from the letter here and the writers of the letter. Efforts to protect children and staff in schools must focus on the air, etc.
Can be reduced by filtering and ventilating air. The good news is we know the engineering measures to take. In fact, Daniel spoke to some of them earlier. Filtration; MERV-13 filters, six air changes per hour, etc. HEPA air filtration, upgrade heating, ventilation, air conditioning to bring in as much outdoor air as safely possible.
Again, that's at odds with traditional energy efficiency sequences. Now, the good news at the very bottom is there's actually money for schools to do some of this work. It's a very interesting time in the industry. I think it's really a once-in-a-lifetime chance to really upgrade a lot of these systems and make them good. [NOISE] Let's move a little bit beyond COVID.
This is interesting because this study was all done before COVID, by the way, about five years ago. This is not new. But what's happened is COVID has raised that awareness about air in public spaces.
I don't think that's going to go away. It's going to diminish but it's not going to go away. But what is done is brought to light some of these other factors that I think will remain post-COVID. That is these things like cognitive function, and I invite you to this cognitive function website, COGfx study, it's well-publicized, where basically they did a double-blind study of people in an indoor environment exposed to different levels of CO_2 and VOCs and so forth. Cognitive function, executive function was either doubled to three times better in an environment with better air, simple as that. The comparison was done in a conventional code level system on the left versus maxed-out, highly ventilated space on the right, and these are the differences that were shown.
Now I may get to a little bit about how you mitigate the energy costs associated with it and that's the trade-off piece. I think to be successful here in these areas about what I call them making the invisible visible. A lot of the discussion earlier, not a lot, but a fair amount, I think Igor mentioned it, is this idea of monitoring things and being armed with information and so forth.
Let me talk a little bit about that. Traditional BMS systems that we know and love have been controlling Boolean for a long time. Again, I've focused on comfort and energy. CO_2 was their artifact, is really a proxy sensor for people, for energy savings purposes. Not really is in air quality sensors and most BMS systems.
What we're seeing now is a move towards true continuous indoor air quality monitoring solutions. They're quite available. There's a number of solutions. But the technology is typically a wireless IAQ sensor into a wireless hub, brought into the automation system or its own cloud, and creating a nice monitoring solution, including VOCs, particulate matter, and so forth to create that full spectrum IAQ and wellness piece. By the way, more sensing is always good in a BMS as a controls person, so we can actually control off of these things as well, which is interesting. But once you have that in place, this idea of making the invisible visible, as we've talked to customers, there's really two components I think that are very interesting.
One is, again, the real-time continuous monitoring of the air and forms decision-making. On the left you see an example. This happens to be our abound platform. This is a controversial part. This is a very interesting part.
Engaging and communicating to the occupants in the building to instill confidence. Just like the energy-efficiency story and the conversations we had earlier about how do you communicate and so forth to make people aware of energy efficiency is even harder with air. It's obviously a difficult concept.
But what we're seeing is people want to see something happening. You'll see things like the delta counters. You'll see a sign. I think it's so big, they've partnered with Lysol, I think. You'll see a Lysol sinus, so that's some air ports.
Some signals, you walk into buildings that something is being done. This again is an example of our platform. It happens to be a balanced platform with real-time dash boarding heavily tied into it, a well benchmark. Then real-life examples where we brought it to life, and this is an interesting one.
The Braves asked us to put this in in their VIP suites. Again, remember early this year when the season started, people were very nervous about coming back into public spaces and they use it as a way to give people little more confidence that something was being done. Now the good news is, and this particular stadium is a relatively new stadium, and it's really well, probably over-engineered in terms of its mechanical abilities. I had plenty of air capability for filtration, plenty of control points, and so forth to provide that environment. Then we just added to it a monitoring piece.
Another example was in a school. Again, what was interesting here is by showing the data to people, people started asking questions about, we didn't realize this is what the quality of our air was. That's the earpiece. What about the trade-off with energy and sustainability? Because look, it costs money. It's clear. We all know that if you go to one of these crappy filters that don't do anything with basically no pressure drop to emerge 13, there's an energy trade-off there.
Same thing about being more outdoor. Means shift to sustainability. And look, you guys know all this stuff on the left, so I'm not going to reread that. But the good news is that we know how to reduce energy in spaces. I really don't think this is a technology problem.
From a macro view as much as an economic or willingness or whatever impediment we can think of. Let me describe what's on the right. Again, this is another study that's referenced down here where this looked at the impact, not only energy but the co-benefits of energy reduction.
On lead sites. We use lead sites as a proxy for efficient buildings, for lack of a better data source. Like Henley Hall, 40 percent energy savings lead platinum. Doing that analysis.
Over this period of time, this was done in US, China, and Germany, Turkey, and India. Just those six countries. Saved about $7.5 billion in energy costs. At first, that sounds like a big number, but I started thinking about it. It's like, that's not really that much, but then I realized that's the energy savings only documented in these lead-certified buildings, which is less than 4 percent of our building stock in the US.
It's just illustrative. Then what was interesting is they did the work to convert the energy costs into climate change impact to carbon impact, and then also the health co-benefits of avoiding sulfur dioxide particulate matter from power plants, etc. They correlated that through the health team into reduced asthma attacks and sick days and so forth. That's how this was done. Anyway, what we do matters, we have an impact and the good news is because of people like the folks on this phone and all of you, we know how to save energy.
Coming back to that cog effect study earlier, where we talked about the benefits of healthy air. There's also a cost to bringing in more outdoor air. Just describing what this is we looked at three different outdoor air rates, 28 and 40 cfm per person. Then we looked at two different systems, VAV systems and fan coil systems. Across seven climate zones, seven different US cities across the typical DOE standard office building and just modeled it, end up with an hourly analysis program. Then looked on the right.
Yes, indeed, of course, costs went up. But by adding energy recovery ventilators, which is a very proven technology and becoming pretty iniquitous. That impact dropped off quite dramatically, in most cities it was basically the minimus. Now, even with the $14-40 per person per year, more energy, that's bad.
But it does beg the question. For people that own buildings and people trying to sell technology in the buildings. Now, what does the health of people worth? One app per person per year, it's probably like 14 bucks a year. It's a way to think about it. But this is a hard sell.
I'll tell you firsthand. Trying to convince people to do something and spend money for something that they view as intangible, is very difficult. What COVID did those days to open people's eyes, we're willing to please have this conversation. Now I'm going to shift to controls a little bit under this context because that's my background at the movement. Control systems you guys talked about this all day.
Punchline is modern BMS systems, they're all great. But people have to use them, they have to be simple to use and so forth, it's other people have talked about today. An integrated system can deliver the cake and everything else.
Increased ventilation, monitoring the filtration and enhance control, and so forth. This is just an example of air handler graphic here. I do want to call attention to this little box on the left. We call it the environmental index.
There's a history behind this and this is important getting into the simplicity piece that we talked about earlier. A little bit of history back in 2008, there's some work done with ASHRAE, and articles written around, again, comfort versus energy efficiency. How do you balance the two, and the case is we're trying to be made around the value of people's salaries versus energy efficiency and so forth. We created what we call the environmental impacts, which is simply an index of, that time is quite simple. This is simply temperature and humidity normalized. You can take that index as a metric and a control point.
It is the zone level, floor level, building level, campus level, etc, different roll-ups, and so forth. To give energy managers a tool to compare against our energy use in the left. Just basically trading to guard rails, comfort versus efficiency, and driving between those two guardrails.
Just a very simple way to manage a building. It was quite successful and effective. What's happened now in this last year or two is just an environmental index, it's just got to more complicated.
Just added a lot more things to it as sensing becomes available, we now call it the flower petal with many more components to it optionally. People can control a more broad perspective in their buildings. >>Guideline 36.Big proponents of this. You guys are probably involved in this, some of you directly but high-performance sequences of operation, I think, are very important.
Again, is an area that will help, I think, our industry to have more standardized approaches. It's not just the technology, but the people that install it, configure it, etc. This is an area that I think has been or should be, still early days a little bit, but it should be a big success for the industry, including some basic FDD built into it. This is an example of work that's been done over a long period of time, starting in places, in universities, and so forth but getting to the point where it's now operationalized, commercialized at scale. Now, for example, all of our VAV controllers have Guideline 36 basically implemented as standard out of the box.
That's very different than the way things were just a few years ago along with dashboards and all that stuff that comes with it. Another area where I think controls are evolving in a very practical way is automated commissioning tools. Igor talked about this earlier, but commissioning tools are really important, I think because buildings might work on day 1, but starting on day 2 and day 3, they start to come apart. If they're commissioned right on day 1, by the way, which they often aren't.
This is just an example again of a standard commissioning tool/auto commissioning tool where people when they set up their VAV systems is a classic approach. Unoccupied hours, it will auto-exercise all the valves, compare them to standards, expected outputs, etc. Then call a ball. If there's a problem or not give guidance to the facility manager. Again, these are things that should be expected to essentially it's standard at this point. Again, just a few years ago, this stuff really was the exception, not the rule.
Then the next thing I wanted to talk about is my wrap-up here. We've done a lot of work in the last couple of years with multi-site portfolios. I think these are really interesting because what I learned through this is that the service component is just as important or more important as the technology.
You'll see what I mean in a moment. These multi-site customers, as you'd imagine, they're busy trying to do a lot of things but they have to maintain their policies. Compliance policies, temperature compliance, ventilation. Yes, they want to reduce energy as it hits their P&L and Increasing comfort, increasing air impacts energy in a negative way. They're always struggling with trying to find the balance. There's a number of mitigation steps that are pretty typical now, adaptive side and schedules, purge cycles to clean up the air to sort new thing during COVID times, and dealing with wildfires.
Advanced FDD now is pretty ubiquitous Cloud-based FTD systems. With the last piece is the piece I didn't appreciate until I started really digging into it. That's this proactive system management at scale.
People actually looking at the control system and acting on it and doing something with it. I think that's something that we often forget about. I forget about as a technology provider that if no one uses a system, then there's really no value in it.
There's examples here. Big-box retailers saving non-energy and hitting their comfort goals. Quick serve restaurants, reducing truck rolls, savings significant energy. Another retail store we worked with, significant energy reduction and better temperature compliance.
Again, you can have your cake and eat it too. The technology is there. It's not rocket science, but it's effort. Let me describe the classic model, not the classic model, but the emerging model and how this works. Really it's about connected assets. This is becoming quite common now.
Remote connected assets and services, either through the BMS or independent of the BMS. A platform that provides technology insights. Again, I'm not promoting any, there are several different ones out there. Now we have one we call IntelliSuite. There's other ones out there that help define what's the problem.
Is it urgent and how do I fix it? Oftentimes it stops there. The other key piece is an operation center especially when you're trying to do this work at scale, to act on the insights. I know the goal is autonomous and so forth and we'll get there but until we do, having a way to actually act on the data, do something with it and dispatch trucks if and only if they're needed. This allows you to batch service. If you have multiple units in one building, if one is clearly bad, you can look at the older ones in predict it, if they're going to be bad, put the parts in the truck.
This is real stuff and it's really happening. By doing this type of a holistic approach, people are able to actually save money and improve comfort and so forth. Again, at scale with multi-site, it works pretty well. A little more complicated, I think with each snowflake, commercial buildings to do something like this. I think that's where the challenge is as we go. Just to wrap everything up because I know it's end of the day.
My last slide, I just wanted to put something out there as an approach that we think about where we think a healthy, comfortable, and sustainable journey can all be done. Starting with some assessment, energy assessments, and air site assessments. Real-time monitoring to understand what's really going on. Commission balance, update the equipment, ideally, continuous commissioning, and that can be done electronically.
Optimize the control sequences. I didn't talk about things like chiller optimization and all that because that's all well-documented. A lot of tools out there for that.
Supplemental purification if it's needed. Monitor, improve, and acts. Then this last piece is, I think the coolest piece of all of this is getting the occupants engaged in the building. Broadcast and inspire confidence in what we're doing because then, the people in the building know that something's being done, something about this building is different, the owners care, etc. That's the piece that's relatively new.
By the way, it's a little interesting because facility managers don't necessarily like that as you can imagine because it calls attention to the problems they have in the building and it forces action to happen. Anyway, with that, I'll wrap up and happy to open up for questions. Thank you. Thanks very much. Thanks, mate. This was really a great wrap-up in the sense that it told us precisely where all the complexities that we have discussed during the day end up, and who really needs to benefit from resolving those complexities.
That's the message that I took. Also an excellent view of where we are and what the pressures on the system on our complete ecology of people that are interested in this, where they are. It seems like the conclusion is we're at an interesting time from a variety of different perspectives. I'll amuse you with the fact that we had an informational screen on campus that was called the Student Resources Building way back in, I think 2010. I don't think you visited us at the time, but we literally tried that and it had some success. People actually liked it.
We did work with our facilities to enable this. I don't think it's there anymore, but we should probably resurrect it at some point but I think this informational aspect we spoke about several times during the day and it's really important to integrate everything. Any questions for me from the panelists or the audience at this point in time? I have a few. I do when I'm coming on Daniel's presentation, I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly the tides have turned on renewable energy. I saw the curve in showing the the surplus at midday. I would have never expected that to have happened so quickly, relatively speaking.
That was very interesting. An ideal thermal storage, flipping the thermal storage story. I think I would have never expected that either. That's very interesting Daniel, thanks for sharing that. Richard, I wanted to ask you a question regarding literally the last couple of slides that you showed, which is, it's showing us the state of affairs as is, so human insights are important, there's an operation center, all these different tools, everything is commodity today, which it wasn't 10 years ago, but it is today. It was interesting to watch that and be there.
There're all these developments and that's to us in academia is a really important question. But all these developments out there on the AI side trying to impact this and many other industries by providing the aspects that solid insight center or operations center is doing today, and then minimizing the amount of time that people have to spend on even those higher tasks. Really helping the building engineer, despite the fact that there are no PhDs that are implementing the process control. What's your view as to where that's at in the context of buildings and just the overall context of flow of energy? Where do we stand? How many years? What's one of the bonds? Here's the analogy I'd use that would be interesting is cars. We've talked about self-driving cars for some time.
That's going to be a ways off. Clearly, there's all issues and so forth. But what is real right now is a car. I have car, now it's two years old and has got this driving aid I'll call it.
The wheel shakes my go over the line or at its course corrects. My sense is that's where we are right now. The technologies that are there that are real, that are certainly helping and I think there's some applications where they're certainly autonomously, they can do things on simple systems and so forth. But I think this shooting for the moon, not from a technology standpoint, got to shoot for the moon from a technology standpoint to get there.
But people's willingness to turn over control to things, I think there'll be some time other than around the edges and around no specific use cases. Any other questions or opinions on this particular issue? I have a question. Don't know if it's related, but I just wanted to play a devil's advocate with regard to the commercial building sector. Let's just assume that these changes, hybrid work and working from home persists and the commercial building sector shrinks in size.
Is there a play for the residential sector to bring some of the commercial technology we've created on the commercial side over to the residential side to improve things in that sphere? Do you see that from a business perspective? What do you think? That's really interesting. I have maybe a contrary in perspective on that which is, I actually think it's easier in the home than in the building in the sense that the actual technology aside, I come from the school of thought that the bigger problems getting people to use it, and the beauty of a home sale is there's only one decision maker. I think some of the technology actually can move a lot faster in the residential space than the commercial space and we've seen that. When Nest first came out, there was that first smart thermostat that's easy to use, picked up right away. I think there's probably other areas that are ripe for that as well. Home purification is one we're seeing now, which is really taking off.
That won't take off nearly as fast in the commercial space, and I'm sure there's other examples as well. Richard, and you have corporate responsibility motivations from the business sector? Sure, absolutely. Here's one thing that's always interesting to me because I grew up with a father-in-law, actually, he was a professor and then a buildings engineer. When he visited the number of times what was most interesting to him that he always designed air conditioning systems with humidifiers.
What was interesting to him is that it's almost nonexistent [LAUGHTER] in most systems that we have. Now, the reason I'm mentioning this is the repeated suggestions by NIH, CDC, people that are in the know on the health aspects of this that in fact, humidifying air is a health issue and a pretty seriously interesting one. Interestingly, and I don't know exactly how in Europe these days those issues are handled. Maybe it's all turn to no use of humidifiers because of course, they use energy and so it's an energy efficiency issue. But do you see that coming back? Is a bit of practical question with these health pressures. It's not only CO_2.
Yeah. I do look at it. People are talking about humidity in the commercial space. Adding humidity for the first time that I can remember in my career to your point. But I haven't seen many people talking about really driving and adding humidity to this space. I haven't heard a lot of that. I've worked on some buildings where that was considered.
My recommendation always was that because of condensation issues in the building envelope, etc. That basically, when the humidification was most needed, which was on the coldest day, you really needed to turn it off. The health benefit might apply to 90 percent of the time.
But if you use the humidification in that other five percent of the time, stuff would get wet, and when stuff gets wet, things grow, and when things grow, it's never good for anybody. By the way, there's a very serious maintenance issue that I agree with. But if you listen to CDC and NIH should again to be slightly contrived and spice of discussion.
Probably much of the sick building syndrome that Joseph Allen so eloquently describes is their aspects of interrelated not enough humid air in the building. The health aspect, at some sense, I know it's invisible, but the health aspect could potentially be driving this. I'm wondering whether that's something that we should pay attention to. Who knows?
We shall see [LAUGHTER] that becomes an item. Any other topics, questions that may be missed during the day and didn't discuss, although we had a very wide-ranging discussion on these topics. Something else that comes to mind? Just had Scott said something in the chat here, I'm just build on what he said or asked.
Is commissioning enough to accomplish better control? Probably not, but I think this idea more continuous commissioning is impactful very clearly. I think the way to do that and make it more applicable or more used by more people is to make it more ubiquitous which means making it easy and quite frankly. Basic retro-commissioning or continuous commissioning and FDD. Basically, it's standard tools in the toolbox, which is starting to happen in commercial buildings for new systems picked typically have those as a standard. Why do you think this didn't happen yet? I mean, I remember 15 years ago.
I believe there was a school in Texas that even trademarked continuous commissioning. There was really a movement. This is the question for everybody. [LAUGHTER] Why then didn't it happen? What do you think are the core reason? It's the nature of the industry is still fragmented. Who owns the commissioning service? Who benefits from it? Who does it cost? Often, installation wants to be done as quickly as possible and the commissioning process can slow that down. That's a different business than the operations business and they're often disconnected from each other.
I think it's just a symptom of the fragmentation of the industry also that's not been embraced. Any other? I hate to say it, but a lot of these areas, I think most people aren't aware and they don't care [LAUGHTER]. Energy Efficiency and everything. I mean, I'm in an office building, it's a suburban office complex and I curiously asked a lot of questions, but if we weren't in the controls business, our facility manager and again, it's a typical model we use a third party facility term like many people do. Because the occupants they don't ask.
If they don't ask what it gets work done is just keeping the thing running and that's what happens. That's why I'm really intrigued by making more information available [NOISE]. It's the occupant model. If it was completely automatized, which is maybe where the bottleneck was. if it was completely automatized and really provided accurate, actionable information that could be implemented will have to be involved, but not tremendously. Maybe even changes in the control system itself. Direct writing then it could potentially now happen.
There are technologies that are emerging from a variety of institutions, commercial and academic. That's a very, very good point. Anybody on another topic of discussion? Well, we had a very interesting day.
I have a few questions that I was writing down as a summary of I think with the number of speakers have talked about. I'll read them. Let's see if I can share. Can you see my screen? Yes. Here are a couple of things that I've been thinking about.
It seems that there is an agreement that there is some pressure of change due to closer attention to IQ. I think a few speakers have argued that. There seems to be one big issue in bringing technologies to market and that's the investment cycle.
Whatever we can do on the research side, and then later on the development side that needs to be a cycle or better understanding of what the risk is, better prediction, better monitoring. Then a few people have definitely talked about the need for monitoring actually we need to conclude with a pretty strong pitch for monitoring everything in the whole time and continuously commissioning everything which I also think is right to do. One thing for us in academia and labs that's important. Maryanne's group are still working on this stone loss and also working on this on academia, multi-objective optimization. These methodologies are not simple. The problem is just to give a perspective.
If we're talking about decent-sized commercial buildings, one can have 10,000 [inaudible]. These are governing the dynamics, starting from thickness of the walls and the resulting heat coefficients and so on and so forth to Windows and others. These are not easy problems when you add the health aspects to it, it becomes a serious needed development of modern technologies. I had needs for integration of design and control for comfort, energy, and IQ, which is driven by these pressures.
Then also integration of subsystems that is both a challenge and an opportunity. Of course, if it's a challenge because they very often don't talk to each other or might not talk to each other. Now, that's especially true in the residential international conference. But it's an opportunity because when we couple them like combined heat and power, we can actually get more out of the combined system than what we're getting from the visual systems. I'll send this text around to everyone and then if people have comments, please tell them either now or we can exchange a little bit more by email if you're willing to continue this discussion a little bit, might be of some interest to come to some giant conclusions as to maybe the top shelf needs as we come to that. Any immediate comments to this? I have two things in chat. I'll look at that.
If not, I'm going to stop sharing and then take a look at share. There we go. With that, I think we're going to conclude. I'd really like to thank everyone, both the speakers, the panelists, the participants. I thought certainly, I have learned a lot. I have certainly learned where we stand, what the perspectives are.
Not only from various deep technical contexts, but also integration along different verticals which was quite important because, without understanding where the impact is, I don't think we can be extremely effective on the research side. Understanding impact is very, very important as we do all of these guys. I really want to thank you. I hope that sometimes in the future and hopefully close future, we're going to meet at this building that is behind several of us, Mark is in it [LAUGHTER]. At least his background is inside the building. Thank you again. Have a great rest
of your day and hope to see you all soon. Thank you Igor. Thank you, Igor. Thank you. Well done, everyone. Thank you.
Very useful day. Thank you Igor. Thanks, Manouche. Thanks, everybody. Yes, thanks for organizing. Thank you for enabling and participating. Alright see you [MUSIC]