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Toshiba introduces 'powerful and versatile' control and monitoring system

Toshiba Air Conditioning (a division of Toshiba Carrier UK Limited) has introduced a new control and monitoring system called Black Pear, which it claims is one of the most powerful and versatile on the market.

According to Toshiba, Black Pear connects directly to the HVAC control bus, providing instant connectivity to Building Management Systems, and overcoming the need for a central controller and separate interface.

Its built-in LCD display gives field engineers local control over units, and enables fast and accurate commissioning following installation with USB-based software. It can also be used on systems with a central control for added flexibility.

Black Pear is compatible with all the major communications systems, such as Automated Logic, Modbus, BACnet and Trend, enabling virtually universal application for Toshiba air conditioning equipment with all types of Building Management Systems.

When the controller is powered up, it scans the network to identify connected units. The local keypad can be used to directly control all indoor units within a building. In the event of a BMS failure, this feature is very valuable as it maintains communication across the network, enabling individual units to be controlled despite the BMS failure.

A single Black Pear module can connect up to 64 indoor units, meaning it can cater for large applications without having to be doubled up or multiplexed.

The system is the result of a project between Toshiba UK and control specialist Microtrol, whose other clients include British Aerospace, Ford Cosworth, GSK and Star City.

David Dunn, general manager of Toshiba Air Conditioning, said: “The aim was to provide a cost-effective and simple-to-use control solution that would overcome the need for a central control system. Black Pear provides just that, saving engineers time, saving space on-site and making commissioning quick, accurate and straightforward.”

He added: “The device is easily configured to communicate with connected air conditioning units in the same way that a standard central controller communicates with devices across a building - but with all its inherent advantages. We believe Black Pear is the control solution the industry has been waiting for.”

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