Chief Information Officers (CIOs) are beginning to take a more commanding role in the development of “smart” building management systems, reports Network World.
As new buildings are designed to be more energy efficient – and old ones are retrofitted with new, integrated management systems – the IT department is being called in to converge its infrastructure with a building management system (BMS).
BMSs can “hang” off of IP networks, creating huge operating efficiencies. For instance, heating systems can communicate with air-conditioning systems, so windows open and close automatically to adjust to temperature. Failed light bulbs get replaced by a remote system. Vending machines on the IP network can be replenished quickly when low supplies are detected.
Large IT and networking suppliers (e.g., IBM, Cisco) are working with BMS suppliers to provide the technology for the integration. BMS providers have their own protocols that are not always IP-based, and CIOs are encouraging them to convert them, thus setting up a future of integration.
And because IT executives are accustomed to change and a short cycle of innovation, they are perfectly poised to push companies to embrace new ways of operating, said Rajesh Sinha, technical director of building services company NG Bailey Teswaine, the ICT arm of the UK’s NG Bailey.