The Royal Museum of Fine Arts in Antwerp, Belgium, otherwise known as KMSKA, is an internationally renowned collection of art, and the only Flemish Museum to achieve high-level scientific status. Not only does it house an impressive collection, but it is also a leader in the conservation and management of priceless artworks. 

The museum’s building is rich in history, with a story that spans centuries. Plans for the present building began in 1877, when Antwerp City Council decided to hold a competition for local architects to design a larger space that would house the expanding art collection. Once designs were finalised and after six years of construction, the new building opened in 1890, and still cleverly reflects the grandeur and beauty of the art housed inside.

Set across five floors and with thick internal walls, the museum was experiencing poor signal transmission with the existing Building Management System (BMS) experiencing issues with the sensors dropping off and losing signal. As a result, the museum sought an advanced and reliable solution that could monitor environmental conditions effectively through thick walls and still provide accurate data to control the building's climate. This would not only ensure visitor comfort, but also save energy, and costs and help in the preservation of the art. 

Sontay teamed up with clients Honeywell Belgium to deliver a joint solution for KMSKA that included Sontay’s SORA system, the ultimate solution for wireless sensing in BMS applications. Ideal for projects that require a fast turnaround and minimal downtime, SORA combines the trusted sensing reliability of Sontay sensing devices along with the unrivalled wireless power of Long Range Wide Area Network (LoRaWAN) technology.

Sontay provided 55 Temperature and Relative Humidity Sensors along with two hubs for the project. The impressive wireless strength of SORA was able to overcome the obstacle of the museum's thick walls, which along with Sontay’s smart and innovative sensing devices means the museum can now sufficiently monitor and improve the internal temperatures, humidity levels and other important environmental factors. The system is also particularly efficient in historical buildings where power sources are harder to find, because the sensors are fully battery-powered. 

Prior to the on-site installation in September 2023, Sontay facilitated a smooth process by conducting off-site preparation in their offices. Remote technical support was provided to ensure the sensors were configured and optimised to the museum’s specific requirements. This preparation significantly streamlined the on-site implementation process, reducing downtime and potential disruptions to the museum’s operations. 

The successful implementation of SORA at KMSKA highlights the importance of innovative solutions and strategic partnerships in overcoming unique challenges. With Sontay's SORA system, this cultural institution can now continue preserving and protecting its invaluable assets.