Smart Buildings for Smart Cities
India’s Building Automation & Control Systems market has been witnessing double digit growth and it has the potential to reduce costs significantly by controlling HVAC systems of buildings.
The country is witnessing an immense pressure on traditional energy resources due to rising demand arising out of rapid industrialisation, significant shift of rural population to urban areas as well as population growth.
According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), India’s energy demand will double by 2030, creating significant challenges for the country. Amid sharp focus on growth through sustainable development, there is an increase in growth of Green and Smart Buildings.
Building Automation Systems simply means providing comfort and energy efficiency in residential as well as non-residential buildings through centralised control of a building’s heating, ventilation, air-conditioning (HVAC), lighting and security, with the help of a building management system. This helps in operational efficiency, cost effectiveness and energy optimisation.
Technically put, Building Automation Systems are centralised, connected networks of hardware and software through which one can monitor as well as control the environment in various buildings, be it residential apartments or commercial facilities like hospitals, hotels, shopping complexes or offices.
India is witnessing double-digit growth in Building Automation & Control System markets. According to a recently published TechSci Research report called ‘India Building Automation & Control Systems Market Forecast & Opportunities, 2019,’ there is a bright future for companies operating across the entire building automation value chain.
The report estimates the Indian Building Automation & Control Systems market to grow by three folds, in revenue terms, by 2019, registering a strong CAGR of around 21.7% during 2014-19.
Healthcare facilities are the second most energy-intensive buildings, using more energy per square metre than any other type of building, except food services. Because of this, energy efficiency is the key towards unlocking capital trapped in conventional hospital infrastructure.
Building Automation Control Systems can be applied in areas such as heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC), lighting systems and control, as well as construction materials.
Imagine that there is a sudden power outage in a hospital in the midst of a surgery. Detection of the reason for power failure takes a lot of time which could be life threatening for the patient undergoing surgery.
However, with technologically advanced Building Automation System, the patient’s safety defences could be integrated with the facility system in order to prevent adverse events, including infant abductions or unexpected patient departure. A holistic hospital management system is the key to effective management.
LED lighting industry
Let’s look at smart automation technology present in LEDs, allowing one to use light as per requirement. Lights can sense motion of a person and act accordingly. These lights are used in lounges, passages, parking lots, washrooms and other similar areas. The lights get turned on to the required level of intensity only if they sense a person’s presence or his motion and save energy when the place is unoccupied.
Such kind of automation technology could be beneficial in the hotel industry, where there are more cases of electricity wastage. Thus, integrated energy management systems form an integral part of building management systems. Integration of these systems will significantly reduce total life cycle costs of a building, allowing superior management at minimal cost.
Automation in buildings also provides multiple benefits, such as conservation of energy resources and lower CO2 emissions. Although there is requirement for high initial investments, which is a major challenge, the concept of green and smart buildings is being adopted by commercial as well as residential segments.
Building automation components from Schneider Electric facilitates comfort and energy efficiency in non-residential buildings through automation and security systems. This includes heating, ventilation, air conditioning, controllers, sensors, valves, actuators, programmable regulators, centralised building management systems, space optimisation solutions, access control, video cameras and security monitoring equipment.
SmartStruxure solution enables users to monitor, measure, and optimise a building’s performance throughout its lifecycle – saving money. It is impossible to control what cannot be measured. SmartStruxure solution, powered by StruxureWare Building Operation software, facilitates exchange and analysis of data from energy, lighting, fire safety, and HVAC.
There is SmartStruxure Lite solution, which is a fast and easy way to future-fit small to medium-sized buildings using Web and wireless technology to control HVAC, lighting and metering. This helps in saving energy as well as time, and improve comfort with minimal impact on operations.
Due to increased requirement and adoption of energy efficient mechanisms, building automation has witnessed an unprecedented growth in the past one year. These can truly bring about a transformational change in Building Management Systems.
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