homenews and insights desigo optic

"It was a dark and stormy night"

By John Arnold
31 January 2024

Smart Buildings Portfolio Mgr

Meet our SSE Energy Solutions experts

Desigo Optic brings building control to smaller buildings

The reasons for tackling Climate Change are all too obvious as I lie here at night listening to the wind and rain howling around my house and wondering if the fences will hold up and the tiles stay put.

We have always had extreme weather here, but not as frequently as this (8 named storms this year so far) and some very hot summer months, again, more frequently in the last few years.

I don’t have to read about Climate Change these days, I can just look out the window and know that it’s not just a future catastrophe we are trying to address, there are elements of that right here and now. The cost to the economy let alone the human risks are enormous, travel disruptions, infrastructure damage and days of work lost.

We may think that only governments can address it with big money, and that of course is a big part of the solution but we all have a part to play and we should do it.

It’s estimated that 80% of commercial buildings have no Building Management System installed1

It’s estimated that 80% of commercial buildings have no Building Management System installed1, and therefore have no direct visibility of their building systems, energy usage and efficiency with real-time data. They may think the building is too small for such a system and have separate HVAC units, Room Controls and Lighting systems operating in isolation from one another but let’s not forget that those 80% of commercial buildings have a significant part to play in de-carbonising our world, our home.

With no overall visibility and operational data available for the building, how do they know that it’s operating as efficiently as it can be, reaching the right temperatures at the right time in the spaces only when and where it’s needed and that systems are running at the right time and not operating when they’re not needed. Data is key to understanding but only the first part, secondly is the visibility of the data to be easily presented and understood by the users and the third part is to take action on the value that the data presents and be able to take quick and informed decisions.

Data in itself can present its own challenges, especially if it is from different systems from different manufacturers with proprietary naming and formats likely being used. Semantic tagging of data like Project Haystack Standard can harmonise and normalise the data regardless of its source and present a holistic data model of the building’s performance, bringing visualisation and analytics from all the buildings systems and environments in an easy-to-understand format, like an informative dashboard.

Siemens Desigo Optic

Powered by J2 Innovations FinStack is a great cost-effective ‘out of the box’ solution, based on both open device protocols and open data standards, with a database natively supporting the Haystack data standard.

  • A Building Management System supporting all major protocols and sub-system agnostic.

Fin Stack

  • Advanced Graphics, Template wizards, Historian, Built-in Analytics, Scheduling, Overrides, Alarming, Logic Builder, Powerful dashboard builder

City Cenmtre ElecMeter

  • Can be deployed on a PC or an Edge controller (CFG3.F200)


  • Secure encrypted remote access via Edge2Cloud from any browser on any smart device, anywhere in the world


  • Scalable from one to many buildings
  • Engineered and commissioned using web browsers, no separate toolsets.
  • Electrical meter dashboards visualize real-time data about demand, consumption and current output

In the future, we will need more energy, and more renewable clean energy but the infrastructure to get there will take time and we need to use the energy we have right now in the very best way that we can and use the best tools to efficiently use it.

Fortunately, no fences or tiles were lost… this time.


1 https://www.j2inn.com/blog/expanding-the-role-of-hvac-manufacturers-in-a-world-of-unmanaged-buildings