The modern large-scale
building is a maze of different technologies and systems. From HVAC, power
management and lighting, to security and surveillance systems, so many
different systems create complexity and inefficiency.
This can make achieving
business goals − such as cost reduction, energy efficiency, flexibility and
future proofing − far more difficult. Building managers often end up being
pulled in opposing directions. Dealing with a problem in one area often
increases challenges in other areas.
That's why there's so much
interest in the Internet of Things (IoT) and how this could transform not just buildings but the entire
The goal of IoT is to make
individual technologies smarter, more connected and able to work in combination
with other systems. It promises to make provisioning and managing buildings
simpler and more efficient,
with more informed and continuous insight as to how resources are being utilized.
How can intelligent buildings and IoT deliver all of
IoT is about two emerging trends
brought together to work in combination. The first is a shift in Internet
technologies embracing objects and embedded technologies. The second is the
development of cloud data repositories and analytics specifically designed to
work with data produced by 'things'.
With the advent of IPv6, this protocol greatly expands the number of Internet addresses
available. That means embedded systems, and all their subsystems, and even
individual sensors and components, can each have their own unique globally
identifiable IP address.
The second component is the
cloud. For the IoT, the cloud adds the ability to collect and store massive
amounts of sensor and embedded data continuously in special IoT repositories.
The cloud also makes it possible to cross-reference IoT data with other
datasets; both from within a building and from across the Internet. This could
be weather or energy grid datasets, pricing information, security alerts, news
or transportation datasets.
The cloud also allows for
predictive analytics, and 'smart' fine-tuning of building systems. It then
becomes possible to create sophisticated algorithms in the cloud that
continuously analyze in real-time both internal and external datasets, and
manage building systems.
An intelligent building can
use data analytics to reduce costs and improve energy efficiency. Weather
datasets allows algorithms to pre-empt changes and forward plan energy
requirements. Real-time energy price forecasts and predictions can allow
building systems to take advantage of low price periods for energy and thermal
A building intelligence
platform, such as CommScope’s Redwood platform, and HVAC can be connected
to room scheduling systems, while occupancy sensors can provide real-time
information on actual room use, dimming lights and HVAC in areas in case of
postponed or cancelled meetings without calendar systems being updated.
Does this help future proof investment?
IoT-enabling a building
also future proofs it and brings down long term costs, both capital
expenditures and operation expenditures. Intelligent buildings can monitor
equipment continuously and detect when a system is close to failure. This helps
extend equipment life, while reducing replacement and operational costs.
Adopting IoT and
intelligent building technologies is not restricted to new buildings. Old
buildings can become intelligent as well. The Empire State Building, which
dates back to 1929, was converted into an intelligent building. Nor does
converting to an intelligent building mean replacing your entire existing
technology infrastructure. Much of the installed building equipment can be
readily adapted to work with IoT technologies.
IoT makes it possible for a
single, advanced building network infrastructure to integrate all building
technology systems while cutting complexity and expense.
For more information on the
connected and efficient building, you can register here to download the ultimate