Madrid’s Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum has just concluded an extensive facility upgrade with help from long-term technology partner Honeywell. 


The work involved renovations to the celebrated gallery’s chillers, cooling towers and primary air-treatment units, all of which are essential for maintaining the best possible environment for the building’s 1,000-plus works of art, which are displayed in more than 24,000 sq m of gallery space.

Honeywell has worked side by side with the museum since it opened in 1992 in the prestigious Palace of Villahermosa, helping create the best possible conditions for both visitors and the museum’s exhibits. The recently completed work included an improvement to the building management system (BMS), which has helped reduce energy consumption and operating costs by adding new levels of control and enhanced predictive maintenance technology.

This was achieved by implementing Honeywell’s Enterprise Buildings Integrator as the centralised BMS. This enhancement, in conjunction with an updated field device management system, ensured gallery-wide building automation of the environmental controls and an ability to carry out device configuration and management tasks through smart plant instrumentation. This predictive maintenance technology constantly monitors the museum’s operations, helping provide enhanced visibility and predict potential failures, inefficiencies or maintenance issues before they occur.


“Honeywell has been our close partner for more than 25 years, helping us ensure the optimal preservation of our works of art,” said Alberto Hernandez, Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum’s engineering and maintenance manager. “Now, with the new building management system, we can better predict any system failures and it has already helped us exceed our sustainability targets.”

The gallery has beaten its goal of meeting the targets set out in the EU’s 2020 climate and energy framework, including a 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions tied to its operations. The new BMS has delivered other tangible benefits including helping the museum trim its overall electricity consumption by nearly 30%. It has also cut water use and heating-oil costs.

All this was all achieved within a tight timeline in order to minimise potential disturbances to the experience of around one million annual visitors, building operation and art. Key to this was the use of easy-to-integrate building control technology allied to Honeywell’s experience in developing advanced solutions for complex and demanding applications.

A video looking behind the scenes of the work can be viewed here.