Berrios: The smart building market will not flourish
if there is vendor lock-in. Facility owners need more
choices for wireless, open standard products and services that are easy to buy, install and use. Wireless technology allows building operators to elevate their level
of connectivity and efficiency with no infrastructure
changes. The technology also supports tenant reconfig-uration without compromises for the wireless network.
Where should building managers
Grimard: You need a roadmap–you don’t put technology in for technology’s sake. It needs to fit with your
business plan. Keep in mind that Io T spans both wireless
devices and cloud storage. When you start integrating
these mesh networks, you are creating virtual data. Set
up dashboards with a cloud-based service that provides
the horsepower you need to manage the data. Software
as a service (SaaS) also has the added benefit of automatically updating graphics and capabilities.
Quintana: You also need to have a vision of your end
goal. Any system can have standalone wireless devices,
but getting multiple systems to talk together is much
more challenging. For example, you need to have a
strategy on how to integrate 20-year old HVAC units
with a new lighting system.
Berrios: Another challenge lies in the need for network planning and deployment to ensure wireless coverage throughout the facility. With the proper upfront
analysis and planning, deploying an effective number
of routing nodes to cover the entire building is easily
Grimard: One aspect that is often overlooked is that
these systems may not have standardized naming conventions for the data. For example, we had a client with
a multiple-building campus where the naming conventions are different in each building, even though they all
DAVIS BERRIOS QUINTANA GRIMARD
have the same control system installed by the same
contractor. Because there wasn’t a data migration
plan, integrating the legacy HVAC with analytical
software and other low-voltage systems like lighting
and shades has turned into a difficult process.
When systems share the same or standard naming
conventions, they can communicate more effectively
and building owners will be able to analyze, trend
and derive value from the data better because the
mapped data points will match the standard tagging
in each building.
Follow the guidelines from Project Haystack,
which is supported by CABA (Continental
Automated Buildings Association) and ASHRAE
What security or bandwidth
safeguards should be addressed?
Berrios: IT staff need to ensure that the network
is planned for efficiency and expected usage so user
effectiveness isn’t affected. Typical items found on
IT department deployment checklists include network infrastructure planning, policies and control
for new device commissioning, device health monitoring and management, user education and control
of physical access to devices in the network.
Quintana: You also need to ramp up your network
security. Investigate how adding wireless devices
might make you more vulnerable to attacks. Ask
manufacturers about their encryption standards–
there should be encryption at the device level as well
as on the server or cloud end so your information is
protected. Network admins will need to be educated
about new wireless devices, and how to securely
manage all the data being communicated throughout the space. B
Jennie Morton is a contributing editor for BUILDINGS.