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Control system requirements

for plant commissioning

As a minimum, the control system should be precommissioned to allow the building services plant to
operate under manual running conditions.
Issues concerning the use of control systems as a plant
commissioning tool are outlined in CIBSE Commissioning
Code C(24).



Guidance concerning the commissioning of building

services systems is contained in CIBSE Commissioning
Codes and other sources, such as those published by
BSRIA and the Commissioning Specialists Association.
Further details of these are provided in Appendix MA1.


Commissioning certification

When the commissioning procedures have been

satisfactorily completed, the commissioning specialist
should certify that the system has been commissioned in
accordance with the project specification and the relevant
commissioning codes. The certificate should be
countersigned by the designer, the CMO and the accepting
authority who may be the contractor, design engineer,
client or some other witnessing authority.
The certificate should be accompanied by the appropriate
supporting documentation, together with copies of the
static completion certificates.
The design of pro forma record sheets for the various
requirements for commissioning records and certification
is a matter for agreement between parties and is outside
the scope of this Code. However, as a minimum, the basic
information stated in the specific CIBSE Commissioning
Codes should be detailed.


Phased completion

Phased completion may be a requirement of the contract

where a large and/or complex building services installation is to be commissioned. Phased completion will need
the checking and handover procedures to be broken down
into manageable packages. The approach to phased
completion will depend on the nature of the building and
its engineering services. Where installed, a BMS can act as
a commissioning aid when phased completion is adopted,
however the availability of the BMS for use during the
commissioning process is likely to be determined by the
terms of the contract, and not be a matter of choice by the
commissioning management organisation.
Where there is the possibility of phased completion being
required, it is important that, as early as possible in the
contract, all the systems to be completed and commissioned early and ready for the employers use are
identified and agreed with the employer.

It is therefore essential to identify which systems are to be
operational to allow phased completion and also how to
prove them as complete and ready for operation as
independent entities.
A certificate of readiness for employer (COR) can be a
useful tool as part of this process. The COR is a series of
documents that gather together all of the submittal data,
tests reports, snag lists etc. and present them in such a way
as to show that a particular system is complete and ready
to be set to work as designed and specified.
The COR is designed to enable all parties to identify a
particular mechanical or electrical system that is essential
for operation of the project and may need early completion
but which either contractually or logically cannot be
identified as complete before the issue of a certificate of
(partial) completion.
One example of where such a document could be applied
is on a shell and core contract. Here the M&E systems have
to be handed over to another contractor to enable the fitout work to be completed. It may be only after the end of
the defects liability period that the M&E systems are fully
commissioned and running.
An example format for a certificate of readiness for
employer is shown in Appendix MA4.


BMS as a commissioning tool

Where the control system is a BMS , it can provide a

monitoring facility which can help the commissioning
process. In particular, a BMS can demonstrate that the
controls are working correctly, by logging their
performance and producing real-time data.
In this role, and once correctly set up and approved, the
data logging and display functions of a correctly
functioning BMS can be used to monitor and record the
operation of the building services plant. In particular the
BMS can:

monitor plant operating conditions, e.g. display

sensor readings by using trend logs and dynamic


indicate whether items of plant are operating



record and document test results.


Witnessing compliance



The objective is formally to witness, on behalf of the client

or his/her representative, the degree to which the
requirements of the commissioning specification have
been met. The commissioning management programme
prepared by the CMO should establish check points when
witnessing will occur; for example, when sections of an
installation are deemed complete and suitable for
witnessing, attendance at plant and system demonstrations, signing off certificates of completion.