Earlier this month, I had the privilege of accepting a 2012 World’s Best Award from Network Products Guide on behalf of CommScope’s, remote control and monitoring solution, OneBase InSite® Connect. I’m especially proud to note that our solution was the winner in the “Green IT” category.
We’re seeing more and more key initiatives from wireless, broadband, enterprise, datacenter and other channels around conservation and proactive control of energy, power, fuel and security costs. Intelligent networks are fast becoming the future for all industries and the ability to control network systems remotely is a driving force.
There is also increasing pressure from public and governmental agencies to reduce fuel consumption and carbon emissions. It’s not difficult to imagine that base station sites account for a lot of our industry’s energy usage problems. The catch is how does an operator improve these areas in a cost-effective manner?
This is where remote sensor monitoring and site control technology, like OneBase InSite® Connect, comes into play. Having a real-time view into equipment performance data and being able to make many repairs without visiting a site – that’s a pretty compelling argument at face value, alone. Add to that a fast, measurable return on investment. One CommScope customer is reaping a 64 percent savings on its environmental consumption systems using OneBase InSite® Connect as part of an overall operating solution.
Look more closely at a few specific examples. We all know that temperature control is a primary concern at cell sites. With remote monitoring and control capabilities, operators can cut back on energy usage and costs. A number of studies show that a temperature setting reduction of just one degree at a single cell site or the use of a fan, instead of air conditioning unit set up to a certain temperature level for site cooling, yields significant savings over a year’s time. And what about those times when a cell-tech visiting a site adjusts the temperature to work more comfortably? If the tech forgets to return the temperature to its normal setting—and this happens across multiple sites over the course of a year—energy costs will be hefty.
I should also mention the “soft” alarm benefits provided by the remote monitoring system, which can be used to establish flexible threshold soft alarms. By that, I mean alarm measurement points that can be remotely set and easily modified to identify marginal conditions before they become critical problems. Such an alarm could sound an early warning for potential HVAC issues when internal temperatures start moving outside of optimal ranges. Or, an alarm could alert you to when fuel in a site’s generator reaches a certain level, saving a trip to replenish it unnecessarily.
Tell us about your Green IT challenges.What other remote site monitoring issues have you dealt with?