Getting to Know: Smart Buildings

Did you know that Hartford has a growing energy and innovation ecosystem? This year, world-class startups participated in Upward Lab’s Smart Buildings program, bringing with them world-class technology and ideas to reduce costs associated with energy use in buildings and more.

The startups, which hailed from countries like France, Germany, and South Korea got a chance to experience Hartford, meet with Fortune 500 companies, City of Hartford staff, and pilot their technology in local facilities.

Two energy-related companies, Xandar Kardian and BEAD, decided to stay in Hartford after the end of the program, and set up offices and a manufacturing facility in town. We got to know Soner Hacıhaliloglu, of BEAD, who described his work and interest in Hartford recently:

Tell us about BEAD, what you do, and what motivates you.

We spend 90% of our lives inside buildings, and nearly half of that time is spent inside commercial buildings like shops, offices, markets, etc. Building automation technologies haven’t changed too much for the last 25 years. We are now at the second machine age and the impact of it to climate change is huge. We want to create a real positive impact on people’s lives by developing sustainable and innovative new technologies for saving energy and operating buildings more intelligently.

How did BEAD get started?

Our team has data scientists, software and IoT [Internet of Things] engineers with extensive experience in developing embedded systems and machine learning algorithms. The co-founders of BEAD have over 15 years of international experience in energy efficiency and smart buildings technologies. During our professional life, we saw that all those smart technologies were as smart as the people who are using the buildings, but they were disconnected from the real day-cycle and occupancy patterns of the space. That disconnected system caused a huge inefficiencies and uncomfortable buildings. Over-cooled, over-heated buildings are wasting over $50 billion worth of energy every year. That was the starting point of BEAD.

What are some of your goals for this year?

We already decided to move out HQ and open our Smart Sensor manufacturing labs in Hartford. Those labs will also be used for training younger generations who are interested in electronics and sensor systems. Youth will have the opportunity to see how electronics are produced and how sensors are tested for different verticals. That is our main goal for this year and to grow our team here in Hartford. We want to be permanent and create an ecosystem for Smart Sensor Technologies and serve the whole US and Asia markets.

What led you to choose Hartford as a manufacturing hub for your company?

We want to create a High Tech Hub for Smart Sensor Systems. We are talking with Colt Building which is also known for precision at the time and we want to convert the building into sensor precision labs of the 21st Century.

How many jobs do you expect?

We plan to have 20-25 full-time equivalent jobs by the end of the 3rd year, with 8 blue-collar jobs.