What Is the IoT / BIoT?
The next evolution of the Internet is shaping up to be the “connection of things.” The Internet of Things (IoT) is the interwoven network of physical objects— Cars, clothes, appliances, health devices, buildings and more, embedded with electronics, software, sensors, and network connectivity—that enables these objects to collect, communicate and exchange data.
When it comes to our buildings and facilities, over the last five years we've seen a consistent increase in the creation of smart building and campus strategies by both real estate and facilities leadership. Today, it's no longer disputed that the transformation to smart connected buildings is lowering operating costs, driving the conservation of energy and better occupant experiences. The Internet of Things has arrived.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is meeting the challenges of today’s building operational and performance issues with unified service solutions that inter-link all the required pieces of connectivity, real-time visibility, collection, synchronization, organization, dissemination, security and storage to manage a single facility or a portfolio of facilities. IoT is empowering advanced building systems to be data driven with data sharing and inter-operable capabilities such as Web-enabled data visualization that makes it easier to access, collect and apply relevant information to analyze the performance of building operational systems. IoT is permitting automated fault detection and diagnostics (FDD) that detect and report faults and facilitating the deployment of Automated Demand Response.
Today buildings are equipped with a diverse range of devices and technology to control HVAC, energy management, lighting, security and other systems. Effective integration and interoperability between these systems is critical to improve building performance, to reduce costs, fuel consumption and carbon emissions and to achieve the security and comfort levels demanded in modern, dynamic business environments.
The Niagara Framework® enables for the connection, normalization, integration and interoperability of diverse devices and equipment into a common environment and supports multiple embedded platforms— regardless of manufacturer or protocol. Niagara meets the need for a strategic, general-purpose automation/information architecture built on open standards; merges multi-vendor automation systems, Internet-enabled infrastructure and real-time enterprise integration into one single, scalable, extensible platform solution and enables the extraction and exchange of data to help manage and control building operations.
Cyber Security
Today cyber security protection and risk prevention for building automation systems is a necessity. Building automation networks and IT networks should not be treated differently when it comes to cyber security and threat protection. Just like an IT network, building automation networks should have multiple layers of defence and protection as well as policies and procedures that are continuously addressed.
A comprehensive cyber security program includes a defence-in-depth strategy and leverages industry standards and best practices to protect systems, devices and the networks they run on and detect potential problems along with processes to understand current threats and enable timely response and recovery. Cyber security should be an integral part of the design of the automation system and the deployment, not an afterthought.
Project Haystack
The amount of data created by equipment, systems and devices has exploded in recent years. Today’s automation systems and smart devices produce tremendous amounts of data to the point where we have expanded our reach to a range of devices that can gather and analyze physical data and react to that data in a variety of applications that we’ve never seen before.
The challenge is to make the data available in the right format and deliver it to the right person at the right place and time within a secured environment. This is the basic requirement to create a data value chain. To realize the full value of data, it must be collected securely, in a timely manner, standardized in the correct format, made ready to be used, put in context with operations and events and presented to the right persons at the right time to enable timely decision-making.
Since its formation in March of 2011, the Project-Haystack organization has been filling a critical need in the effective utilization of smart, connected devices and equipment used in smart buildings. Project-Haystack provides the industry with an open-source, collaborative environment where industry experts work together to address the challenge of utilizing semantic modeling (also known as tagging) to make data self-describing thereby streamlining the interchange of data among software applications. The community has developed and promotes a flexible, extensible, data modeling approach and standard models for common equipment systems. The standard includes detailed documentation describing the data modeling techniques, significant libraries of consensus approved equipment models, and software reference implementations to easily enable software applications to consume smart device data that is "marked up" with Project-Haystack data descriptions.
The work developed by the Project-Haystack community streamlines the process of managing, presenting and analyzing the vast amount of data produced by smart devices and equipment systems and the techniques can be used with virtually any type of system data.
Data Analytics
Data analytics have evolved from just business analytics to business and operational analytics. Analytics has become a major force behind how business decisions are being made and for many organizations; analytics are looked upon as a strategic asset. The real value of analytics lies in the insights it yields and how well organizations can translate those insights into tangible benefits for their business.
Some of the use cases for data analytics include improving the effectiveness and efficiency of maintenance operation through the identification equipment faults. Failure faults can cause equipment to stop operating as intended or even entirely. Then there is automated monitoring and verification of energy usage and performance.
With the progress made in building control systems and smart devices in recent years, we can now take advantage of the wealth of data they contain to truly understand and monitor the operations of our facilities and equipment systems. Analytics helps us understand and reduce energy use, highlight operational issues and improve overall facility operations, resulting in lower costs, greater occupant satisfaction and improved performance of our assets.
Big Data
Big data has transformed the business landscape, as companies tap into increasingly broad varieties of structured and unstructured data with greater speed and sophistication. This data revolution has enabled companies to drive innovation, discover valuable new insights, optimize processes, and make better, more informed decisions. And this goes for our building and facility environment. The effects of big data and its influence on decision making for building and facilities management is no exception. Technological advances in monitoring tools and software allow facility managers access to vast amounts of data about a building’s energy use. Today, it is about accessing big data and doing something with it.
Software As A Service SAAS
Building management systems (BMS) provide centralized management and control systems to maintain the building environment. Over the past decade these systems have been upgraded to Building Automation Systems delivering greater environment sensing and connectivity to networked management capabilities. Now, through SaaS we are pioneering ways of leveraging BAS/BMS data already being collected to deliver in-depth analysis and provide actions to improve BAS/BMS efficiency. 
Technology Partners
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