Smart building company Johnson Controls has announced the official opening of its OpenBlue Innovation Center in Singapore.
The new facility, located within the School of Design and Environment (SDE) at the National University of Singapore (NUS), will be a living laboratory, Johnson Controls said, for a “new breed of customizable, contact-free applications” built on the company’s digital technology suite, OpenBlue.
Together with its ecosystem of partners — which includes NUS and Microsoft — the center is implementing a common configuration language that bridges core building technology, as well as behavioral, wellness and spatial data to develop solutions that meet new demands for safety and sustainability in connected spaces, Johnson Controls said.
The firms said that the new opening is part of Johnson Controls’ commitment to develop advanced digital solutions that can improve performance, reliability, safety and energy usage of buildings and its occupants.
The company also operates innovation centers in Cork (Ireland), Milwaukee and Birmingham (U.S.), Wuxi (China), Pune (India) and San Jose (Costa Rica).
“Artificial Intelligence and machine learning will play a pre-eminent role in reshaping how we create comfort for people and energy efficiency in a building”, said Mike Ellis, executive vice president and chief customer and digital officer for Johnson Controls.
The 240 square-meter center, housed in SDE4, Singapore’s first new-build net-zero energy building, will have sensors fitted throughout the indoor space — including overhead ventilation to measure air flow. The lab staff and collaborating researchers will collect and analyze data using Johnson Controls’ unifying technology suite and analytics to obtain qualitative and quantitative understanding of the interactions among technology, well-being, and indoor environments.
NUS will serve as a testbed for OpenBlue Innovation Center’s solutions, which will help the university in its ongoing efforts to develop a smart, sustainable and safe campus for its staff and students. The collaboration also includes joint research and innovation in the areas of built and urban environments, particularly in data analytics, sustainability and operations, as well as people and wellness. There will also be opportunities for collaborations on teaching and internship programs.
The OpenBlue digital platform, when integrated with Johnson Controls core building systems and enhanced by ecosystem partners, connects traditionally separate systems to create new capabilities for safer space usages, the company explained.
With support from the Singapore Economic Development Board, the facility is expected to have more than 100 employees within four years. Johnson Controls currently employs around 800 employees throughout Singapore, and has its products installed in many of the commercial buildings in Singapore. The new facility required a total investment of SGD50 million ($37 million).