Imagine that the building you work in knows your unique preferences for lighting and automatically dims or brightens the light as you sit down at your workstation. Convenient, right?
What if this convenience not only benefited you but also helped building owners and tenants save energy and cost? Or, if it could reduce energy consumption by 80%, reducing greenhouse gas emissions significantly?
With smart building technology, this is both possible and probable.
What is a smart building
A smart building is one that uses technology to automate processes to control and optimize the building’s systems and performance. Just like a living, breathing organism, a smart building has a brain, the building management system (BMS), that controls other parts of the building’s body, such as lightning, heating, HVAC, security systems, wayfinding, etc.
Smart buildings connect with their occupants and adapt to their needs, resulting in a healthier, safer, and more productive working environment. This also ensures efficient and economical use of resources.
Smart building benefits
A building that improves safety, well-being, and productivity while reducing energy consumption, carbon footprint, and costs… It sounds too good to be true, but smart buildings are a win-win for everyone
Increased energy efficiency
A smart building can control light and HVAC settings to turn them on and off or adjust to the number of people in a room or the amount of natural sunlight. This means that smart buildings only use energy on the lighting, heating, and ventilation that is needed, reducing energy waste.
A study by the American Council for Energy found a cost saving of 32% in smart buildings with connected HVAC and lighting systems. On average, organizations that use smart technology and real-time energy management solutions can reduce costs by 15%.
Improved well-being and productivity
Smart buildings are equipped with sensors to measure air quality and pollution. If the carbon dioxide (CO2) levels in a room increases, ventilation automatically increases too to restore air quality.
Not surprisingly, poor air quality affects your well-being. Enhancing ventilation when needed ensures occupants’ comfort and well-being and can improve worker productivity by 8-11%.
Air quality and indoor pollution may not sound like a big problem, but the air can be up to five times more polluted indoors than outdoors. In an average-sized meeting room without adequate ventilation, three people can cause CO2 to reach a level that affects their cognitive function in just 45 minutes.
Live data visualizations
Another important benefit of smart buildings is the ability to collect a large amount of data that can be analyzed to gain insight and make informed decisions.
For instance, facility managers can see how many people are typically in the building on a given day and use the insight to close off parts of the building if the space is not needed, further reducing energy consumption and costs.
With indoor mapping, it is easy for workers to see which parts of the building are open and to find an available desk or meeting room, thanks to real-time occupancy information.
Smart buildings are key to creating a sustainable future
According to The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), buildings are responsible for 40% of global energy consumption, 25% of global water consumption, and 33% of global greenhouse gas emissions. However, they also offer the greatest potential for achieving significant greenhouse gas emission reductions.
The UNEP states that energy consumption in buildings can be reduced by as much as 30 to 80% using proven and commercially available technologies, such as smart building technology.
According to Finance Digest, the implementation of any smart building technology represents a massive long-term saving. For businesses occupying offices, smart buildings even offer a return of 10 to 1 on investment.
If you want to use your smart building investments to their full potential, you need an indoor map to effectively visualize and combine the data collected. Reach out to us to set up a quick call or request a free demo.