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BSF Gateshead
Smart Energy Solutions

Case Study

Building Schools for the Future | Gateshead – UK

Applications:  Monitoring, heating, cooling, metering
Points: 100 to 200 points in each school
Number/Type of Building: 6 Schools
Network: Ethernet
Cylon Hardware Installed: UC32.Net UC32 Field Controllers
Cylon Software Installed: UCC, UEC
System Integrator: Astral Control Services



Building Schools for the Future (BSF) is a multi-phase school rebuilding programme. This £45 billion project began in 2005 and is the biggest single government investment in the last 50 years. The aim is to rebuild or refurbish every secondary school and half the primary schools in England, across 72 Local Authorities by 2020. This unprecedented programme will transform schools into modern environments that will inspire learning. Building Schools for the Future is being delivered by a new type of Public Private Partnership known as a Local Education Partnership (LEP) in which a Private Sector Partner invests alongside the public sector. This is the Private Finance Initiative (PFI).

In March 2003, Gateshead Council received PFI credits to invest in developing new school buildings. This project includes 6 schools in North East England and is a £54 million build project. As part of the Renewable Energy Programme, photovoltaic electric panels, solar water heater systems and wind turbines have been installed. Part L of the Building Regulations required that utility metering was to be provided as part of the specification. Therefore the schools landlord needed an energy management package. Astral Control Services, the system integrator and Cylon Controls worked together in order to provide the right solution for all stakeholders including the builder, the consulting engineer, the facilities manager and the council.

Today, the Cylon Building Energy Management System (BEMS) controls and monitors the ventilation, air conditioning systems, heating systems and also monitors the photovoltaic electricity meters, solar water heater systems and wind turbines. The system was installed and is maintained by Astral Control Services.

“The Cylon BEMS product offers the local authority added benefits by allowing each school to use the BEMS system as an educational tool on projects such as renewable energies while having web based remote access at no additional capital cost”

Alan Jones, Director, Astral Control Services