Emerson’s $35 million total investment in The Helix is intended to foster an ambitious collaborative approach to conducting research to create new technologies that address heating, cooling, and refrigeration challenges affecting homes, commercial buildings, data centers, restaurants, supermarkets, and other retail operations.
“There are some big things happening in our industry right now … initiatives like the connected home, the industrial Internet of Things, intelligent stores, new system architectures that can work with natural refrigerants, and ultra-efficient air-conditioning systems,” Bob Sharp, executive vice president, Emerson, said. “To stay on the forefront, our approach is to look at the entire environment our customers operate in, and this is why we have invested to create this facility.”
The Helix will focus on advancing ideas from concept to prototype quickly. Emerson will collaborate with customers, industry partners, competitors, and experts from other industries.
One project Emerson is undertaking is focused on detecting refrigerant chemical leaks in refrigeration and air-conditioning systems with speed and accuracy.
The Helix features full-scale, simulated environments, including a working commercial kitchen, a two-story residential home, a grocery store, a data center, and a commercial building. The Helix also features the Grind2Energy system, Emerson’s solution to turning food waste into energy. Teams will use the facility to generate new ideas and then test them under real-world conditions.
With The Helix, Emerson and others will look to advance solutions to challenges related to efficiency, environmental demands, and regulations; development of new applications for automation; maximization of the use of connectivity and big-data insights to drive better performance and experience; and new innovative thermal-management technology that addresses the challenges facing data-center managers.
Emerson plans for The Helix to be a global hub of industry education. In addition to modules, the facility includes three learning laboratories and meeting space.
For more information, visit Emerson.com/TheHelix.