Johnson Controls creates interactive innovative learning lab for students at Sir Charles Kao UTC in Harlow

Johnson Controls, a global multi-industrial company, has created ‘The Box’ for the Sir Charles Kao University Technical College (UTC) in Harlow. The Box is an innovative interactive teaching environment, equipped with building management systems (BMS).

This project fits the philosophy behind the establishment of the UTC’s by the British government. It provides students with technical education that prepare them for the future by providing them with the skills and experience wanted by the industry. UTC student, Henry Frasi in the main ICT room

Jonathan Williams, Technology and Integration Sales Manager at Johnson Controls Building Efficiency UK said:

 “’The Box’ brings added value to students’ experiences with innovative technologies that are becoming more and more relevant. Energy efficiency and sustainability are increasingly part of our everyday life and working environment.”

“Employers are constantly struggling to find candidates with emerging technologies or manufacturing skills. ‘The Box’ will help these students prepare for future job opportunities.”

Principal Michael McKeaveney said:

“The installation of ‘The Box’ will enhance the innovative learning experience we offer students, and I am delighted with the result. The Box exemplifies the employer-led, current and pioneering approach to education we deliver. I’m delighted to be working with the high calibre sponsors that we have here at the UTC. Johnson Controls will provide a top rate experience to ensure all our young people understand the sophisticated systems involved with what Johnson Controls do that will allow our students to develop their employability skills.”

BMS in a box Johnson Controls designed, supplied, installed and delivered the MetasysTM Building Management System for the project. Integrated in a normal classroom setting, ‘The Box’ measures temperature, light and humidity and has been configured with two spaces: a teaching space and a plant/maintenance space.

Johnson Controls equipped the rooms with a MetasysTM Building Management System, air handling equipment and environmental controls devices. These are all connected via a new ICT architecture providing live interaction with the environment. Students will be able to program a Building Management system, measure air temperatures and humidity, calculate energy consumption, automatically control lights, control systems remotely over Wi-Fi via tablets or their own smartphones, etc. The possibilities are numerous.

50 UTC’s by end of 2015

UTC’s are academies for 14 to 19-year-olds that focus on delivering technical education by engaging young people and meeting the needs of the modern business. They are taught core General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE’s) subjects alongside vocational qualifications, the technical knowledge and skills demanded by the industry. The UTC in Harlow is one of the 13 new UTC’s specialising in the demand of technical subjects. Each UTC has 500 to 800 students. The British government plans to open a total of 55 UTC’s throughout the country by the end of 2017.