DDC ControlsSee upcoming dates
Update: The fall 2020 offering of this course is being rescheduled for 2021. As soon as the next course date is confirmed, the date and enrollment information will be added to this page. Thank you and please check back again soon.
DDC system components, terminology and design options have created many challenges for engineers and facility operators. Open protocols have also increased customer expectations, but have added complexity to the planning and design process. If you plan, design or specify DDC systems, you will receive a comprehensive understanding of of current technologies and options.
Master direct digital control systems by learning how to:
- Define your DDC requirements to control HVAC and related building systems
- Identify the hardware and software elements that make up a DDC system
- Evaluate the advantages and/or drawbacks of open systems (BACnet)
- Plan for IT and cybersecurity concerns
- Avoid common problems when controlling air handling units, VAV systems, central plants, and more
Who Should Attend?
- Consulting, design, and energy engineers
- Building owners, facility managers, and operating staff
- Commissioning authorities
- Contractors and building HVAC control service organizations
- Technicians responsible for the design, acquisition or operation of environmental control systems in commercial, institutional, or industrial facilities
Examine the capabilities of DDC systems and learn:
- The importance of having a planned system architecture
- If open protocols add value with respect to your requirements
- Control strategies for a variety of HVAC system types
This course will give you a broad range of knowledge to understand the principles and technical concepts used by various manufacturers. This understanding is essential to acquire, implement, and operate a cost-effective system. While various manufacturers are discussed during the course, the course content is not specific to any vendor.
A laptop computer or tablet is required for the course.
MONDAY (8 AM to 5 PM)*
Introduction to DDC Systems
- Basic elements of control
- Feedback concepts
- Loop response
- Types of hardware, software, and firmware
Introduction to the Controlled Systems: Part 1, Load Dynamics
The Nature of the Problem
- Developing a Simple Control Loop
Supplemental Content: Introduction to the Controlled Systems: Part 2**
- Pumps and Fans
- Ducts and Pipes
- Heat Exchangers
- Refrigeration Cycles and Cooling Equipment
- Boilers and Heating Equipment
Input and Output Data Flow
- AI, DI, and PI
- Analog to digital conversion
- Sensor types, applications, accuracy, stability, calibration, and other factors
- Safeties, limit devices, and power monitoring
- AO, DO, and PWM
- Digital to analog conversion
- Transducers; damper and valve actuators
- Configuring network data flow
- Important performance factors
TUESDAY (8 AM to 5 PM)
Inputs and Outputs: The Field Perspective
- Where We Came From
- Averaging Sensors, Thermal Lags, Position Effect Proxies
- Calibration Offset vs. Multi-Point
- Code Issues and Terminal Strips
Supplemental Content: Pneumatic Controls**
- Network concepts
- Generic components
- Communication concepts
- Local vs. global information
- Installation issues
Open Systems – the Myths and Realities
- Do you want an open system?
- Understanding IT vs. DDC
- Cautions and concerns
- Different levels of open systems
- Engineering issues
WEDNESDAY (8 AM to 5 PM)
System Architecture for BACnet
Supplemental Content: Network Architecture, from the Field Perspective**
- Types of programming
- Logic diagrams and programming symbols
- Designing control logic
Controlling Analog Processes
- PID Control
- Open Loop vs. Close Loop Tuning
- Lags and the Two Thirds Rule
- Supplemental Content: Controlling Analog Processes – Lags**
- Supplemental Content: Controlling Analog Processes – The Impact of Lags, an Example**
- Supplemental Content: Controlling Analog Processes – Guidelines for Tuning Loops and Functional Testing**
Application Requirements: The System Concept
- Organizing your information
- Process by process approach
- Supervisory logic
- Working with System Diagrams
Controlling the Mixed Air Section
- Strategies and control logic
- Assessing an Economizer in the Field
- Supplemental Content: Mixing Air**
- Supplemental Content: Limiting Economizer Operation**
- Supplemental Content: Assessing an Economizer**
THURSDAY (8 AM to 5 PM)
Controlling the Air Handling Unit Section
- Heating, cooling, humidification, and reheat
Controlling the Fan
Controlling Constant Volume Systems
Central Plants: Pump Interactions and Affinity Laws
- Controlling a Condenser Water System
- Supplemental Content: Controlling Different Central Plant Technologies**
- Terminal Unit Basics
- Supply and Return Fan Flow
- Loads and Coil Discharge Temperatures
- Minimum and Maximum Flow Settings
- Supplemental Content: Flow and Pressure Measurement**
FRIDAY (8 AM to 12 Noon)
Defining, Planning, Procuring DDC Systems
- Architecture; Types of Hardware
- Integration and/or Interoperability Concerns
- Operator Interfaces; Training
- Acquisition Strategies; Sole-Source vs. Multi-Vendor
- Open Protocols
- Key to Success
Specifying Your System
- System Descriptions
- Materials; Devices; Hardware & Software
- System Setup
- Specifying Commissioning of DDC
DDC System Commissioning
- Documentation Review
- Start-up Checks
- Functional Performance Tests (FPT)
- The Five Principles of DDC
*Registration/check-in takes place Monday 7:30 to 8 AM. Lunch is included Monday through Thursday.
Steve Briggs, PhD, senior engineer, Facility Dynamics Engineering in Champaign, Illinois, has worked on the development of guide specifications for Open Building Automation Systems based on BACnet and LonWorks for the Corps of Engineers. He is also a consultant to the Army and General Services Administration (GSA). He brings a strong electrical engineering perspective to the area of direct digital control.
Jay Santos, PE, president, Facility Dynamics Engineering, Columbia, Maryland, is a consulting engineer with more than 25 years of experience in HVAC system troubleshooting, modernization, and automation, he has served commercial, institutional, and industrial clients worldwide. He is a highly respected educator, having supported the HVAC continuing education programs of several major universities.
David Sellers, senior engineer. Facility Dynamics Engineering, Portland, Oregon, has more than 30 years of experience with commissioning, design engineering, facilities engineering, mechanical and control system contracting, and project engineering. His work spans a wide array of facilities, ranging from hospitals and semiconductor clean rooms to commercial office buildings and research/pilot projects in the energy efficiency and sustainability arena.
Joy Altwies, Ph.D., P.E., LEED AP+, is a program director for the University of Wisconsin-Madison Office of Engineering Professional Development (EPD).
For over 15 years, Dr. Altwies has developed and taught continuing education courses emphasizing high-performance building design and construction, mechanical system design and operation, energy efficiency, and commissioning. She also develops and teaches graduate courses in the Master of Sustainable Systems Engineering (SSE) degree program.
Prior to joining the University, Joy worked as a consulting engineer focusing on green building projects and commissioning. She is an active member of ASHRAE and the US Green Building Council. Joy holds a Bachelor and Master's degrees in Mechanical Engineering, and earned her Doctorate in Environment and Resources at UW-Madison. Her interdisciplinary research investigated the impact of building energy code policies on technology adoption in the commercial and residential building sectors.
Upcoming dates (1)
Oct. 12-16, 2020
Location: Madison, WI
Course #: RA00259-U256
PDFs of course materials, break refreshments, lunches and certificate.
- CEU: 3.6
- GBCI: 36
- PDH: 36
Registration: 7:30 AM
Class begins: 8:00 AM
Class ends: 12:00 PM on final day
The course materials will be provided in printable PDF format only, so please bring a laptop computer with a USB port. A pre-class digital download is available upon request – please contact the program director for details. Lined notepaper will also be provided to all attendees. Pre-printed notebooks of the course materials will not be provided.
Instructor(s)Steve Briggs, J Santos, David Sellers
Team Discount: $1705 per person when three or more enroll from the same employer
Lifelong Learner Discount: $1695 if you have completed two or more EPD courses since January 1, 2018. EPD will verify your attendance records.
If you cannot attend, please notify us no later than one week before your course begins, and we will refund your fee. Cancellations received after this date and no-shows are subject to a $150 administrative fee. You may enroll a substitute at any time before the course starts.
DDC ControlsCourse #: RA00259
DDC ControlsDate: Mon. November 04, 2019 – Fri. November 08, 2019
PDF of course materials, break refreshments, lunches and certificate.
- CEU: 3.6
- GBCI: 36
- PDH: 36
DDC ControlsDate: Mon. March 18, 2019 – Fri. March 22, 2019
Fee Includes: Instruction, course materials (PDF), refreshment breaks, scheduled lunches, and continuing education certificate.
- CEU: 3.6
- GBCI: 36
- PDH: 36
DDC ControlsDate: Mon. October 08, 2018 – Fri. October 12, 2018
CD with PDFs of course materials, break refreshments, lunches and certificate.
- CEU: 3.6
- GBCI: 36
- PDH: 36