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Oct 1, 2012 - Building

Germany:
Way Above

A completely remarkable construction project has been completed at the Zeil in Frankfurt: in approximately 17,400 square meters, the Thurn-und-Taxis Palace, which was destroyed during World War II, has been rebuilt – and expanded to include a hotel, office tower, and shopping center. So that schedule and budget requirements could be fulfilled, the people in charge of building automation for the office tower relied on WAGO’s WINSTA® pluggable connector system.

In Frankfurt, old princely tradition and 21st century urban life have been combined in a large project. At the center is the reconstruction of the Baroque Thurn-und-Taxis Palace; connected to it are the Hotel Jumeirah with 219 luxurious rooms and suites, the MyZeil shopping center, and the 135-meter-tall office tower.

Bauer Elektrounternehmen GmbH & Co. KG was awarded the contract for the building automation of the office tower on the site of the redesigned Thurn-und-Taxis-Platz. With a trade tradition reaching back nearly 100 years and more than 500 employees in Germany alone, this Buchbach company provides all-around service in many areas of electrical technology and building automation. “The work in Frankfurt began in August 2008, about four months after the beginning of the bidding,” remembers Remco van der Meulen, Department Director Building Automation at Bauer, who participated directly in the PalaisQuartier project.

The technical requirements put out for bid for the future offices in the 32-story building were very high – not least because the equipment and comfort of the modern facade architecture could not be neglected. Each office was supposed to be equipped later on with the same high-quality functions, namely electrical control and regulation of the lighting, windows, and sun blinds, as well as of the heating and air conditioning.

The special challenge of the project: the final space planning of the building, which encompassed more than 47,000 square meters, had not been finalized during the planning, because nowhere close to all the space had been rented out by then. Therefore, a flexible and pluggable solution was preferable to traditional electrical installation with fixed cabling for loads, outlets, and controllers. “To be able to implement such requirements, we selected the LON® fieldbus system and we had individual system distributors made, which could address all of these automation demands,” according to the engineer.

van der Meulen explains that during the planning Bauer paid special attention to the subsequent installation on the construction site: “Our claim is to offer our customers the best quality in the shortest possible time; this is why we have been working successfully with WAGO for many years.” WINSTA®, WAGO’s pluggable connector system specially for building installation therefore played a decisive role in this office tower in Frankfurt.

Each system distributor is equipped with the pluggable snap-in sockets and the electrical lines with their snap-in plugs are coded unambiguously, both mechanically and in terms of their color. This provides absolute protection against polarity reversals and saves an enormous amount of time because no lines have to be screwed in; they must only be plugged in. “The installer sees at first glance which plug belongs to which socket; it is not possible to connect them wrong,” according to van der Meulen. Bauer addressed the variety of functions in Frankfurt with WINSTA® MINI, the compact connectors especially for tight spaces, and WINSTA® MIDI, the universal product series for nearly any application case.

“In order to implement all control and regulation tasks in the office, we need approximately 1800 system distributors, which are divided into two groups according to their function,” describes Department Director van der Meulen: approximately 800 units are installed in the ceilings of the various floors. Each of these distributors can control the lighting and regulate the temperature of up to four offices; in addition it is connected via two, three, and five-pole snap-in MINI series connectors to a total of four room control panels, 20 control and cut-off valves for heating and air conditioning, and eight lighting units. Added to this is the connection to the fieldbus system via two-pole KNX-series connectors, which WAGO developed to allow pluggable and thus safe and flexible connection to bus systems.

The second group of system distributors, of which there about 1000 in the floor tanks of the raised floor, are immediately adjacent to the windows. Each of these 1000 distribution boxes can control up to two automatic windows and up to four sun blinds independently of one another. Then there are the outlets in the raised floor, which can also be switched on and off. All of these connections as well as the connection to the LON® bus and the room control panel are made using two-, three-, four-, and fivepole snap-in connectors from WAGO’s MINI, MIDI, and KNX series.

After completion of all installation work, approximately 7000 pieces of room information will be plugged into the central building control technology in the office tower of the PalaisQuartier. Acceptance took place precisely on schedule – thanks in no small part to the WINSTA® connector system, as Remco van der Meulen emphasizes in closing: “WAGO’s products have won us over yet again, because when it comes to reliability, handling, and safety, they are truly the state of the art.”

Conclusion

  • Flexible and pluggable solution
  • Cover nearly any application case with WINSTA® MINI and MIDI
  • Connect WINSTA® to the fieldbus system safely and flexibly with KNX

Text: Stefan Keggenhoff, WAGO
Photo: PalaisQuartier GmbH & Co. KG, WAGO

    dk
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