Frequently Asked Questions

If you can’t find the answers you’re looking for talk to one of our experts.






Company

Who is EkkoSense?

The industry leader in optimizing thermal performance, EkkoSense brings together unique 3D visualizations and AI/ML software with innovative, low-cost IoT sensors and PhD-level thermodynamic expertise to achieve entirely new levels of thermal optimization.

What is the history of EkkoSense?

The EkkoSense team consists of PhD and Masters level experts who have been developing software systems and cooling solutions for 20+ years. We have installed innovative products and delivered cooling expertise to thousands of sites across the globe.

What is EkkoSoft® Critical?

A SaaS platform providing immersive 3D visualizations via a “digital twin”, unique cooling and airflow insights, one-click capacity management and innovative AI and machine learning optimization tools for your data center environments.

What data do you collect and how?

We have an extremely accurate and low cost range of wireless sensors to provide thermal and humidity data along with unique cooling unit sensors for providing real-time cooling duty. We can also communicate with 3rd party sensor systems to collect thermal and power data.

What savings should you expect when engaging EkkoSense?

Our customers see tangible savings from capacity release, reduced downtime and cooling energy reductions. Cooling energy savings typically range between 10% and 40% depending on the type of EkkoSense engagement, purely software or a combination of software and optimisation services

Software

Where is EkkoSoft housed?

EkkoSoft is housed on Amazons AWS, providing a scalable, secure, and resilient platform for even the most demanding of customers.

How secure is EkkoSoft?

We take security extremely seriously and we have installations at some of the largest financial institutions in the world. All data transfers are encrypted and all wireless data is transferred using 128-bit AES encryption. EkkoSense will also shortly have formal ISO 27001 and Cyber Essentials certification.

Is EkkoSoft similar to CFD, DCIM or BMS?

No, EkkoSoft is different and in a class of its own for optimizing the M&E environment. We use real-time data, not simulated results, we focus entirely on the M&E aspects of the data center and we augment mission critical systems such as BMS to get the most out of the environment.

Does it integrate with other systems and devices?

Yes, we routinely interface with 3 rd party devices via Modbus and SNMP and we are also able to communicate via oBIX.

Where is sensor data stored?

All data is securely stored in the cloud.

What PC requirements are necessary to run EkkoSoft Critical?

EkkoSoft is entirely cloud based, there is no on-prem version offered and you need to access the system via a modern browser such as Chrome, Firefox or Safari.

What do we mean when by “digital twin”?

A virtual 3D model of the data center for easily and quickly showing key thermal and power data. The 3D ‘twin’ can be built extremely quickly and is then used to support optimization, capacity management and risk reduction activities.

Can you control cooling units and other systems through our software?

EkkoSoft analyses in real-time the patterns and performance of the data center and uses machine learning to make tangible actionable recommendations to the user so that the human has the final sign-off of changes and we aren’t placing control in the “hands of the machine”.

How do customers receive thermal alerts?

EkkoSoft automatically notifies a user’s screen that thermal issues are occurring in a room and an email can also be sent.

How does the thermal alarm system trigger an alert?

Customers can set custom setpoint thresholds for each individual room. The software will then monitor the data being sent by our sensors and if these setpoints have been breached, an alert is sent.

How does your Cooling Advisor work?

Our Cooling Advisor uses AI and Machine Learning techniques to calculate how thermally optimized a room is and then makes tangible recommendations to further optimize. Suggested changes could involve removal of floor grilles, adjustment of cooling unit set-points, putting units into standby. Additional new rules are being added to Cooling Advisor all the time, with the next set of changes arriving in Q4 2020.

Are additional staff required to run your system?

Not at all. EkkoSoft is lightweight, easy to implement, intuitive to use and simple to manage. It allows your current team to operate more efficiently and drive optimization savings across their estate.

Hardware

General Questions

Why is it that measuring rack temperature alone is not sufficient enough to reduce thermal risk?

Rack temperatures only tell you how well your racks are being cooled, they do not reveal how the cooling is being achieved or how much power is being used. To deliver cooling optimization savings you need our unique cooling unit sensor, called EkkoAir, which provides real-time insight into the operation of your cooling units as well as providing an early warning system for faulty cooling units.

What is the frequency that your sensors operate in?

The Critical Things® sensors operate in the 868MHz (Europe) and 923MHz (North America) ISM bands which avoid interference from Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

How secure are the packets sent from your sensors?

All our sensors use standard industry 128-bit AES encryption.

How do your sensors link to EkkoSoft Critical?

Once the link has been made from our sensors to the 3D digital twin modeled room in the software, by scanning a unique QR code on the sensor device, the sensors will automatically transmit data wirelessly to the EkkoHub wireless receivers. The EkkoLink appliance aggregates these readings and securely transmits them to the secure cloud.

Do we need to provide your wireless sensor's power?

No, all our wireless sensors are powered by long-life batteries, which are very easily replaceable.

How do you calibrate your sensors?

The EkkoSensors use a Humidity and Temperature IC which is fully calibrated and tested by the manufacturer and has excellent long term stability. No initial or subsequent calibration is required.

EkkoSensor

How many EkkoSensors are required per rack?

At least one per rack is recommended for good thermal management and for the full functionality (Cooling Advisor etc.) to work. However, you can install additional sensors to get further thermal insights.

What is the battery life of an EkkoSensor?

We guarantee a 5-year battery life for our non-display variant and 3 years for display sensors. The sensors are equipped with replaceable ½ AA lithium thionyl chloride batteries.

Does the EkkoAir control the cooling unit?

No, the EkkoAir is a cooling duty sensor to show real-time data in the software. EkkoSoft only ever recommends changes, always leaving the user in control of any physical changes.

What data is collected by the EkkoAir to measure cooling duty?

The EkkoAir collects supply and return data along with fan power to calculate cooling duty, using known cooling unit information.

What is EkkoAir’s battery life?

We guarantee a 3-year battery life for our EkkoAir sensors. The sensors are equipped with replaceable AA lithium thionyl chloride batteries.

EkkoHub

What is the maximum distance between an EkkoHub and the EkkoSensors and EkkoAirs?

20 meters/21 yards.

How many sensors can connect to one of our EkkoHub?

At least 500. This number is usually limited by the practical number of sensors in range of an EkkoHub.

EkkoLink

How secure is the EkkoLink?

All communications are initiated by EkkoLink into the EkkoSoft platform. Each EkkoLink ethernet port is segregated and has their own internal firewalls and security rules. The operating system has been hardened using CREST approved external penetration testers, in addition to our in house security reviews. The operating system is configured for unattended upgrades. The inhouse C++ applications are developed using Sonarcloud, Whitesource, CPPdepend, CPPcheck and CPPlint to ensure best practices. The web interface is written in PHP and is developed using Sonarcloud and Whitesource to ensure best practice. Penetration testing has been carried on EkkoLink by a CREST approved cybersecurity consultancy following version 3 of the Open Source Security Testing Methodology Manual (OSSTMM v3).

How long can an EkkoLink store site data locally whilst disconnected from the internet?

This is configurable, but the default is 24 hours.

How does EkkoSense provide 3 rd party hardware support?

We provide 3 rd party integration over Modbus and SNMP networks. We routinely extract data from PDUs and In-Rack PDUs via Modbus and SNMP.

Can EkkoSense collect thermal and humidity data from third-party sensors instead of investing in more equipment?

We understand that customers may have already invested in thermal and humidity sensors and EkkoSoft can integrate with many 3 rd party sensors.

Can EkkoSense monitor server rack PDU power?

Yes, we can pull power data from intelligent PDUs via SNMP connectivity.

Installation

How quickly can I get EkkoSense’s system installed?

Very quick! It is not uncommon for customers to have a working configuration within a day.

Do I need an ‘expert’ to install your various devices?

All our devices have been designed to be installed by a competent person rather than an ‘expert’. All our hardware comes with easy-to-use installation documentation to guide customers through the ideal and practical placement of all our hardware. We routinely ship hardware (direct or via partners) to customers who then install without any assistance from EkkoSense staff. However, installation and commission services can be supplied by EkkoSense or it’s global partners if required.

How is the EkkoSensor attached to the racks?

Each EkkoSensor is supplied with a standard mounting clip that can be cable tied to a mesh rack front or fixed to a glass front using double-sided self-adhesive foam tape. On a mesh rack front, the self-adhesive foam tape supplied on the clip can be used with a cable tie to provide extra stability for the sensor.

Do you need access to the inside of your cooling unit to install the EkkoAir sensors?

You need to have access to the inside of your cooling unit to:
- Fit the EkkoAir’s CT’s around the power supply cable to the fan(s) being monitored
- To place the EkkoAir’s supply humidity and temperature sensor straight in front of the cooling unit fans
- To place the EkkoAir’s return humidity and temperature sensor which is fitted near the inlet filters where there is clear airflow.

Can an EkkoAir be installed in a legacy system such as ACUs that are belt driven?

Yes, the EkkoAir can be installed in any device with fans.

Can I put my EkkoAir in an In-Row ACU?

Yes, providing the In-Row ACU has fans.

How is the EkkoLink connected to the internet on-site?

The EkkoLink can be connected to the internet via the customer network or a 4G modem.

Support, Maintenance & Updates

Will I have to pay for the latest updates and additional functionalities to your software?

No, the SaaS EkkoSense software license includes all updates and maintenance. There is no modular pricing.

How regular are the updates?

We provide one major and two minor updates to EkkoSoft every year as a minimum. All customers with an active Ekkosoft SaaS license receive all updates at no additional charge.

Can you provide additional remote monitoring support?

Yes, we offer remote ‘Thermal NOC’ services to augment the capabilities of your existing support teams.

Am I able to get other services to support the software installation?

Yes, we have a PhD-level thermal team who provide their services to our customers, either remotely or on-site, to support any optimization activities being carried. In additiona, our global partners can also supply professional services to help with installation or optimization activities.

Is there support and maintenance provided when purchasing your hardware and software?

All hardware provided comes with a 12-month warranty and all software support and updates are included in the annual SaaS license.

Do you provide any additional installation and maintenance services?

EkkoSense and our global partner network can provide purchasable additional installation and optimization services.

What levels of training do you provide?

We provide a 2-hour remote training session as standard as part of every new install and additional training requests can be covered by EkkoSense or via their global partner network as required.

Purchasing, Pricing & Ordering

How do I purchase the Software?

Either directly from us by:
Phone: +44(0)115 823 2664
Email: [email protected]
Or via one of global partners found here.

How much does the system cost?

We have designed our system (software and hardware) to be extremely cost-effective, with the typical cost often only being a few dollars per year per rack.

How does the software pricing work?

Our SaaS price is based on the number of elements a customer needs monitoring. The price per element monitored will decrease as the required number of elements monitored increases.

How flexible are you with your pricing models?

We can provide CAPEX or multi-year OPEX structured deals to suit any budget requirements and can often provide a very compelling business case due to the energy-saving benefits of installing the system

Am I able to purchase your IoT sensors/hardware alone?

No, to purchase our hardware you will need an EkkoSoft License.

What regions does EkkoSense operate in?

We operate in all regions across the globe with an ever-increasing number of global partners and resellers.









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