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Sakura City Museum of Art

Temperature and humidity management, along with energy savings

In October 2015, the Sakura City government invited ESCO companies to submit proposals for carrying out the equipment upgrade. After careful examination of the proposals, it chose Azbil Corporation as the ESCO company.

“Strict control of air conditioning requires a lot of energy, but Azbil has abundant experience and expertise in the air conditioning of museums. Also, Azbil proposed that we use a subsidy for promoting energy efficiency and productivity improvement at small and medium businesses offered by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry,” recalls Assistant Manager Yuka Shinkawa. Mr. Shishido adds, “Initially, we thought that our stored artwork would have to be moved to a different facility during the construction. However, Azbil suggested a way to carry out construction without moving the works of art, by switching between two air conditioning systems so that the environment necessary to protect the art could be maintained. The museum closed during the four-month construction period, but the risk involved in moving the collections out was avoided, which was a relief to us, since they have to be stored at a consistent temperature and humidity.”

The Sakura City government adopted Azbil’s proposal in January 2016, and construction was completed by January 2017. A 10 year ESCO service period began in April 2017. With regard to the details of the project, HVAC central plant equipment, such as aircooled heat pump chillers, was upgraded for greater energy efficiency, inverters were connected to secondary pumps and air conditioner fans, and the central monitoring system was replaced with Azbil’s Wall-Mounted BA System.

In addition, the central monitoring system is connected to Azbil’s dataware center, so now data such as the operating status of each piece of equipment is collected, analyzed, and presented in report format. Using the reports, the museum can discover energy waste and eliminate it.

With the previous central monitoring system, made by another company, automatic control was somewhat difficult due to aging. However, strict control of the temperature and humidity is a necessity for storage and exhibition rooms in order to maintain the condition of the art. As a result, museum staff members had to go to the HVAC mechanical room almost every day to fine-tune the air conditioning.

“Automatic control for consistent temperature and humidity was achieved by upgrading the equipment. In addition, the temperature and humidity settings can be changed from the new central monitoring system which is installed in the office, eliminating the trouble of going to the mechanical room each time a change is made. So, our staff’s workload has been significantly reduced,” explains Mr. Shishido.

“The recent contract we made includes maintenance and management, such as equipment maintenance and repair. Maintenance will be provided by Azbil for 10 years, which gives us a great feeling of relief,” says Mr. Sugasawa.

Azbil’s Wall-Mounted BA System was selected for installation.

Azbil’s Wall-Mounted BA System was selected for installation.

The air-cooled heat pump chillers (left) and hot water heater (right) installed on the roof of the Sakura City Museum of Art as part of the ESCO project are highly efficient.

The air-cooled heat pump chillers (left) and hot water heater (right) installed on the roof of the Sakura City Museum of Art as part of the ESCO project are highly efficient.

This case study was published in the 2019 Vol.4 issue of the azbil Group's corporate magazine, azbil.