Partnership Brings Cutting-Edge Technology to Improve Indoor Air Quality in Chicago Public Schools

By Jason D. Mills, Marketing and Communications Director

Chicago Public Schools (CPS) is undergoing a major project aimed at improving indoor air quality for all its occupants. This is an important goal as a safe, warm, cool, and dry environment is essential to fulfilling the CPS mission. With the growth of technology, there are now many opportunities to monitor and track air quality but finding the right partners who can deliver world-class products and adapt to the complex environment of CPS can be a challenge.

This is where the KMC Commander comes in. In partnership with Advantech and CDW, KMC Controls is helping CPS hit its key performance indicators by installing monitoring devices in 65 million square feet of space. These devices will not only monitor air quality but also detect vaping, illicit substances, and graffiti. The data collected will be sent to the cloud for secure storage, and alerts will be sent out to CPS staff as soon as an event is detected.

The advantages of this project are numerous. By continuously monitoring and tracking the data, there will be no need for expensive industrial hygienist scans, and CPS will be able to provide even better reporting. Over time, if the deployment is extended to the entire district, the need for industrial hygienist scans will be eliminated entirely. This will not only result in cost savings but also improved air quality for everyone.

Advantech’s Uno 420 Gateway is being used for the project. This Gateway is based on the Intel Atom Processor and is both efficient and secure. The Uno 420 is a great fit for this project as it has a low power small form factor footprint and is capable of providing a lot of compute. The Gateway is also equipped with Intel security technologies and has been certified for certain cloud providers.

CDW is acting as a broker in this project, bringing all the necessary technology together for CPS. As a big organization in the IT industry, CDW has many relationships with manufacturers, and this allows them to broker the different parts and pieces needed to make the project a seamless and easy transaction for CPS. CDW is working with a cost-plus agreement, which means they know what the cost is, and what the markup is. This makes it a full turnkey solution from A to Z.

KMC Controls has been a partner with Intel for nearly nine years and is a market-ready solution. The KMC Commander is the staple of the project and has already been selected and proven. It is already in use in around 30 sites and is being used for indoor air quality monitoring, retro commissioning, reducing energy consumption, and more. The relationship between KMC Controls and Advantech is strong, and the two companies are working together to provide a secure environment from a network information security standpoint.

Advantech is a leading industrial PC manufacturer and has been in business for 40 years. With operations in North America, Europe, and Asia, Advantech provides products ranging from servers to Edge compute to switches. Advantech is acting as a conduit to all the connections in the project and is providing the communication tool to send data to the cloud.

The project is a collaboration between KMC Controls, Advantech, CDW, and CPS with the goal of improving the lives of students, teachers, and staff in the schools. The vision and thought leadership of KMC Controls is key to the success of the project, and the partnership between all the different distribution partners is what makes it work. The project is a win for everyone involved as it not only provides improved air quality but also serves as a model that can be leveraged by other school systems.

The project to improve indoor air quality in the Chicago Public Schools is an exciting and important one. With the help of KMC Commander, Advantech, and CDW, the district is able to monitor and keep track of their indoor air quality to provide a safe and healthy environment for students, teachers, and staff. The technology provided by Advantech and KMC Commander offers a secure and efficient solution that can continuously monitor air quality, while CDW acts as a broker to bring together all the necessary technologies and expertise to make the project a success. The involvement of these companies ensures that the district can achieve its goals of improving indoor air quality, reducing energy consumption, and creating a smart building strategy. With the successful completion of this project, it could serve as a model for other schools and organizations, making it easier for them to replicate and benefit from the advancements in technology and data monitoring.

This project highlights the importance of technology in creating a better and safer environment for all. By leveraging the expertise and technology of companies like KMC Commander, Advantech, and CDW, the district is able to make significant advancements in air quality monitoring and management. With the goal of creating a digital and intelligent planet, this project serves as a step towards improving the lives of students, teachers, and staff in the Chicago Public Schools and beyond.

If you’d like to learn more about this, or any of the other solutions from the Building Geniuses at KMC, Contact Us today!