Co-authored by: Kaynam Hedayat, VP Product Management, EcoStruxure Building, Schneider Electric


Modernizing building management systems (BMS) has become a priority for several universities, including the University of Notre Dame (UND). Known both for its athletics and top academic ranking, the university has also distinguished itself by adopting modern BMS technology with the objective of reducing carbon footprint and operating costs, increasing energy efficiency, and improving security.

The Goal

In 2010, UND set the goal of reducing its carbon footprint in half by 2030. This ambitious initiative made implementing a world-class BMS solution a top priority. And, of course, delivering optimum levels of occupant comfort was always of utmost importance.

The Project

With these considerations in mind, the university launched a project focused on refreshing and modernizing its existing building management systems in 2019. Consulting with Havel, an EMCOR Company, UND decided to upgrade its existing Schneider Electric BMS to the company’s EcoStruxure™ Building Operation platform.

The Solution

The EcoStruxure Building Operation platform with Cisco switches enables higher levels of IP connectivity and facilitates secure data exchange from Schneider and third-party systems. An IP network solution jointly developed by Cisco and Schneider Electric brings IT and operational building control together and enables multiple Schneider Electric EcoStruxure Building IP architecture topologies to integrate with existing building layouts. Havel installed the joint solution at the University of Notre Dame to enable faster data flow across the OT network, enhancing performance while maintaining stability and resiliency.

“The need for separation between IT and OT networks is an important topic and was part of our decision-making process to proceed with the Cisco-Schneider technology partnership at UND.”
– Whitey Reed, Director of Automation & Integration at Havel

The EcoStruxure solution features a combination of Schneider SpaceLogic IP Controllers and Cisco Industrial Ethernet switches, allowing facilities personnel without deep IP knowledge to easily install, commission, and integrate devices as buildings are added or updated (See Figure 1). In addition, the EcoStruxure Building Advisor—another EcoStruxure solution that collects and analyzes building performance data—manages the university’s water and energy use.  The solution provides the visibility, analytics and automated controls necessary to oversee and manage energy use, power quality and building performance to help the university maintain high levels of sustainability while operating its facilities and providing occupant comfort.

Figure 1  Cisco network architecture and Schneider Electric EcoStruxure Building Operation solution
Figure 1  Cisco network architecture and Schneider Electric EcoStruxure Building Operation solution

”Schneider Electric is leading the digital transformation of smart buildings with EcoStruxure Building, a secure and open platform, making it possible for IoT-enabled solutions to seamlessly connect, collect, analyze, and act on data in real time. It is exciting to see our solutions, coupled with Cisco IT expertise, deliver results. It lets our EcoXpert partners deliver the best solutions to their customers, while helping them grow their businesses, differentiate their companies, and be more profitable.”
— Kaynam Hedayat, VP Product Management, EcoStruxure Building, Schneider Electric

The Results

The upgraded EcoStruxure Building Operation platform has achieved these results:

  • Reduced operational costs and resource management overhead
  • Increased the speed of data by routing it through a single high-speed IP network
  • Simplified BMS management

In addition, the platform helps UND identify, segment, and mediate network performance anomalies and cyber-attacks as they occur. It also scales easily, analyzing the growing amount of data collected for loT applications without issues.

The joint solutions, along with the capabilities of Havel, allow for Cisco and Schneider Electric to meet and exceed the university’s need to have a distinct Smart Building design, significantly reducing operational costs and optimizing energy consumption.


Learn more about this story and the Schneider Electric and Cisco partnership


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Jean Noel Enckle

Business Development Manager