Innovations in Comfort, Efficiency, and Safety Solutions.
& Angela Lewis
Buildings contain a
treasure trove of data. Information is
available from a broad variety of systems from HVAC and electrical to
utility usage. Much of this information may even be visible at a
Building Automation System (BAS), but for most buildings, it is up to
the building operator to turn this data into actionable
knowledge. Unfortunately, that rarely happens, and as a result,
we see many buildings where systems are operating less than
optimally. How do we fix this problem?
The answer can be found in the new field of data analytics (also called energy information, fault detection and diagnostics, analytics, or continuous commissioning). The concept is software based and follows these steps:
Most data analytic packages are provided as a service. They may
have some hardware or software that is installed in the building but
most of the work is done remotely. The reports and analysis are
viewed on a website.
Data analytics is a rapidly growing field. Currently, we are following close to 70 suppliers. These include offerings from small start up companies to offerings from large established software and controls companies. The good news is that there is a lot of innovation and creativity in this area. The bad news is that we anticipate that the market is going to need to mature and consolidate, which means that the solution you select today may be different (or not available) a year from now. A few weeks ago at the Tridium Niagara Summit, one of the major announcements was that Tridium has acquired a data analytics company called “Data Eye.” Expect to hear more of these announcements over the next few years.
Should you wait for the market to settle out or start using data analytics now? It is our belief that these systems have so much benefit that it is time to act. Find a system that meets your needs and get it on the next project. The good news is that since these are cloud based, the cost to get started is fairly low and the benefit of having the tools to make good decisions is of high value.
About the Authors
Paul and Ira first worked together on a series of ASHRAE projects including the BACnet committee and Guideline 13 – Specifying DDC Controls. The formation of Building Intelligence Group provided them the ability to work together professionally providing assistance to owners with the planning, design and development of Intelligent Building Systems. Building Intelligence Group provides services for clients worldwide including leading Universities, Corporations, and Developers. More information can be found at www.buildingintelligencegroup.com We also invite you to contact us directly at Paul@buildingintelligencegroup.com or email@example.com
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