Schneider Electric and and Cisco have formed a technology partnership designed to help drive major advances in the smart building field.
The two companies have developed, tested and validated designs that help connect building management systems to an Internet Protocol (IP) network with a secure and scalable architecture that is easy to manage.
The solution from Schneider Electric and Cisco brings IT and operational building control together in a secure IP network solution that enables multiple Schneider Electric EcoStruxure Building IP architecture topologies to integrate with existing building layouts using Cisco Industrial Ethernet switches to connect to Schneider’s SmartX IP Controllers.
”Schneider Electric is leading the digital transformation of smart buildings with EcoStruxure Building, a secure and open platform, making it possible for IoT enabled solutions to seamlessly connect, collect, analyze, and act on data in real-time,” said Kaynam Hedayat, VP Product Management, Digital Energy, at Schneider Electric. “It is exciting to see our solutions, coupled with Cisco IT expertise, deliver results. It lets our EcoXpert partners deliver the best solutions to their customers, while helping them grow their businesses, differentiate their companies, and be more profitable.
Large campus environments are among the many organizations to increasingly implement IP-enabled building management systems to enhance performance while maintaining security, as seen at the University of Notre Dame (UND) in Indiana. “The need for separation between IT and OT networks is an important topic and was part of our decision-making process to proceed with the Cisco-Schneider technology partnership at UND,” said Whitey Reed, Director of Automation & Integration at Havel, An EMCOR Company, a Schneider Electric master-level BMS EcoXpert partner.
Havel’s building management system architecture at the University of Notre Dame’s Dispatch Operations Center features the Cisco IE2000 managed switch with the field bus located below the SmartX AS-P Edge Server. The managed switch is DHCP-enabled so the BACnet communication remains beneath the AS-P and keeps the data traffic from going across the IT network.
“This project at UND has opened the door to broader horizons for Havel to understand the difference between information technology and operational technology,” said Reed. “IP solutions in the building automation industry are here now and we need to be a part of it. Customers are loving that we get it, and Schneider Electric gets it. And we partnered with a company such as Cisco that carries a lot of weight in the cybersecurity business, and it certainly has helped our customers immensely.”
“Cisco is excited to partner with Schneider Electric, delivering comprehensive IP-enabled Building Management System solutions to enable the seamless migration of the University of Notre Dame’s infrastructure to a converged architecture. By combining Cisco’s IT innovation with Schneider Electric’s OT innovation, we are uniquely positioned to deploy this solution in a highly scalable and secure manner. Our joint solution, along with the capabilities of Havel, allows us to meet and exceed the University’s needs to have a distinct Smart Building design, significantly reducing operational costs, and optimizing energy consumption,” said Mike Austin, Senior Director, Cisco Global Partner Organization.
Through the partnership, Schneider Electric and Cisco have extended their Solution Technology Integrator (STI) agreement to qualified Certified and Master EcoXpert system integrator partners. As “Cisco Select” or higher-level partners, Schneider EcoXperts gain access to Cisco training and education on IP Ethernet architectures, and can benefit from discounted pricing on Cisco products, including Industrial Ethernet Switches, Catalyst Switches and Industrial Network Director (IND) software.