Governments are fully committed to zero-energy buildings. Gas is becoming more expensive, CO2 emissions are taxed, and self-generation of energy is stimulated. All the more reason to make new buildings, both residential or non-residential, energy-neutral. This means that the total amount of energy used by the building on an annual basis has to be roughly equal to the amount of energy created by renewable energy sources. To ascertain that the building has zero net energy consumption, it is beneficial to implement IoT and monitor the actual energy consumption in as much detail as possible.
There are several ways to monitor energy consumption with IoT. The smart meter is the most commonly used method in residential construction. It roughly measures the energy consumption of a home or building. You can connect other energy meters to the existing installation to measure the consumption in a more precise manner, even to device level: how much energy does a computer, television, or refrigerator use?
Sensors can also provide insight at the level of a room, such as temperature, humidity, CO2 and VOC. Finally, it is important to know whether the equipment you use to reduce your energy consumption, such as solar collectors, or equipment to generate energy, such as solar panels, is functioning adequately. IoT can help optimize your overall efficiency through panel-to-panel monitoring, improving your operational visibility and maintenance planning.
HVAC systems and lighting typically consume most of the electricity in buildings. HVAC systems have been using smart sensors to control and automate the indoor climate for decades. These systems have already proven that they can improve the user experience, reduce maintenance costs, maximize comfort, and reduce energy consumption. IoT makes it possible to apply even more complex algorithms and collect, combine, and analyze data from multiple sources. IoT sensors continuously collect data, such as temperature, airflow, and humidity, in addition to monitoring external factors.
The data collected with these sensors can be combined with other relevant data, such as weather forecasts. By analyzing this data, it is possible to implement smart cooling and lighting strategies that can autonomously control the building’s conditions depending on the time of day or to meet the demand and use of space.
IoT has played an important role in the real estate industry for a long time. As a valuable addition to the building management system, IoT allows building managers to better control and automate the indoor climate, save costs and improve the user experience.
With IoT technology, you can manage energy consumption more effectively to reduce costs, reduce risks and address environmental problems. For example, sensors can measure the occupancy in rooms. By analyzing the collected data, you gain insight into which rooms are occupied and when. Based on this, you can illuminate, heat, or ventilate the rooms.