Building Management System – BMS
A city with its high rise buildings has become a common sight worldwide. Its no longer called just a city but smart city thanks to all the innovative changes we have witnessed in the past decade or more. So what makes a city different from a smart city? A city when it optimizes its resources by balancing its social, environmental, and commercial needs by defining intelligent means of tackling its energy, safety, water, transport, etc., it stands out in its performance and gets tagged as a smart city. To achieve proper balance, meticulous maintenance of the buildings’ mechanical and electrical services is the need of the hour. An effective and reliable management system must cater to the safety and comfort of the people living or working in the building, as well as efficient and reliable maintenance, is required.
The building management system (BMS), addresses this balance by a computer-based single platform installed in buildings to control and monitor the mechanical and electrical pieces of equipment and integrates them into a system network. A building management system specifically links the individual pieces of building equipment based on the functionality so that it operates as one complete integrated system. The current generation building management system is open communications protocols, and WEB enabled, allowing the integration of multiple vendor systems from anywhere in the world.
What does the Building management system do, and how does it work?
An efficient Building Management System does the following:
- efficient resource consumption ensures the safety and improved comfort.
- Depending on the quantity of equipment and its functional use, its arranged and centralized for efficient management.
- A Building Management System can be for:
- Homes and apartment:
The Building Management System for cottages, country houses, and individual apartments.
- Offices and facilities buildings:
The Building Management System for commercial and facility buildings like hospitals.
The various components of a building management system include subsystems like
- Commercial accounting of heat consumption,
- Automatic Central Heat Supply Station, and other heating systems and boilers.
- Refrigeration and other cooling stations
- Plumbing and water supply system
- Electricity supply, lightning, and UPS.
- Precautionary measures include firefighting, smoke removal, fire alarm systems, etc.
- Security systems include access control, security-burglar signaling system, and closed-circuit.
- Satellite television, terrestrial and structured cable system (SCS)
- Long-distance communication and automated parking facilities.
A Building Management System works as at three-levels:
- The upper level: At this level, the management, in coordination with dispatch personnel, operators, and administration to implement the best databases and statistical solutions monitored by computer devices and SCADA-systems.
- The middle level: At this level, the focus is on automating the functional processes such as signal input-output units, main controllers, and various switching equipment.
- The low level: At this level, the focus is on terminals that have input and output functions such as sensors, actuating mechanisms, and cabling devices.
What is the importance of building a management system?
Any data center facility, big or small, requires a building management system that allows centralized management of its critical infrastructure equipment and ensures operation run securely and efficiently. These datacenter facilities host equipment in multi-tenant location centers and require effective and efficient maintenance of backup power, temperature control, and fire suppression.
The Building Management System monitors each area in the following ways:
- Ensures clean and consistent power distribution once it reaches the computer equipment. It helps to ensure there are no power fluctuations or spikes of power that could damage the equipment. It alerts the system managers if there are any power failures, fluctuations, or other issues with the power system.
- It ensures the temperature level is in control as it is vital for any facility. The level of humidity needs to within limits as too much can damage the equipment and cause it to fail.
- A physical security guard can only guarantee appropriate and approved individuals to enter the center at all times. However, this is managed easily on-site through access control cards, scanners, and sensors. The Building Management System can set the alarm to notify operators of any breach of the system or entrance at a time when no one should be in the building.
- A building management system uses Very Early Smoke Detection Apparatus (VESDA) to sound an alarm or alert operators in case of a potential fire.
- An efficient building management system collects and stores historical data to understand the trend and analyze it. It helps operators predict maintenance requirements at the time, so engineers can immediately resolve an issue.
- A well connected and efficient building management system can be monitored and operated from any location, on any device. It allows the data center manager to be aware of the situation and take proactive steps instead of taking reactive solutions.
- A facility manager or engineer benefits from an efficient building management system as a well-organized system notification saves time and can immediately go to the site and resolve any possible problem. Certain issues, like controlling the temperature, can be automated, so the engineer or managers’ visits to sites get reduced.
A well thought out efficient building management system is a boon to the energy and facility managers as it can help them manage the business and commercial properties. Considering how building technologies have adopted building management systems, the pressures to revolve operational savings and energy efficiency is high. The need of the hour and expectations by any business industry and consumers is to behave in an environment-friendly manner, which is something these technologies can help address.