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The Importance of System Controls

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System Optimization Takes System Control

Aug 8, 2018
operation screen for system

The Importance of System Controls

When designing a new modular chiller plant, pumping system or multi-system central plant, a lot of focus is put on selecting the right components - pumps, chillers, cooling tower, etc. - to meet project load, efficiency standards and other requirements. However, if you truly want to optimize your system, you have to put as much attention on the system controls. Without the right controls, the components you spent so much time selecting are never going to perform to their highest capabilities as a complete system.

System controls are the communication center of your system. You need integrated controls that interface with all the major system components - chillers, boilers, cooling towers, and pumps – to deliver real-time data to provide a complete picture of system performance. This will allow you to evaluate any inefficiencies and make immediate system adjustments to minimize power consumption while maintaining performance.


Systecon’s Central Plant Controls

At Systecon, controls are a major focus during every step or our process. Our designs include control engineering specific to each system; we build the controls in our factory alongside the system; and a full simulation of the control sequences – pump staging, chiller staging, valve operation, failure modes, and transmitter signals – part of our factory testing.

Systecon controls use the most advanced technology and algorithms to monitor every aspect of your central plant, providing total system control and unparalleled efficiency, or what we call Interactive Optimization.

They combine industrial grade programmable logic controllers (PLCs) with a dedicated interface screen and remote interface devices to provide the speed, reliability, and redundancy needed to most efficiently run the most robust systems.

We use the latest Allen-Bradley® PLC technology and premium instrumentation including platinum RTD temperature transmitters, temperature compensating differential pressure transmitters, and dual-turbine or magnetic flow meters which limit the need for recalibration.


Human machine interface (HMI) allows you to quickly view and adjust the controls of the central plant. The interactive screens allow operators to view the status of the system, locally and remotely, while providing real-time data for each component including real-time trending of electrical use per hour, per day, and per month. We also provide the option for larger screens (up to 22 inches) which allows you to view more data points and equipment at once and can be used to view training videos, operations and maintenance manuals, and other system documentation.

Systecon controls can be fully integrated with all building automation systems and offer hundreds of points over standard communication drivers such as BACnet, ModBus, N2 and LonWorks. We provide all the control algorithms required for:

      Wire-to-Water Efficiency control for pumps
      VariPrime® system controls for chillers, towers, and valves
      Multiple package controls for distributed and profile pumping schemes

What you get are system controls that read all system inputs twice a second; provide accurate, high speed feedback of operating parameters; inform operators why components are or are not operating; and allow for quick reaction to changing load conditions. They have failure rates less than one per 100,000 hours of operation and offer redundant power supply, processor, and I/O for central plants. Plus, Systecon controls are UL and ETL listed, OSHPD (Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development) approved and carry OSHPD OSP-0068-10 for HVAC Control Panels.

Don’t underestimate the importance of system controls when designing your chiller, pump or central plant. Effective controls can help save energy while maintaining the comfort/performance you need from your system and Systecon’s controls give you a major advantage in achieving complete system optimization.

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