Automation for energy efficiency is gaining momentum

The rise in popularity of technology and automation in the construction industry will have a positive impact on sustainable goals, fmME explores the subject

COMMENT, Facilities Management

Qualcomm is a renowned chip manufacturer whose products power most smart phones and tablets around the world. They are also known for their work in making smarter homes through different technologies, albeit not as much as the larger companies such as Theben, Honeywell and the likes.

I was fortunate enough to witness smart building management systems, advanced sensor network technology and the future of the connected home at a Qualcomm convention in San Diego, back in 2012.

Back then, terms such as big data and the Internet of Things (IoT) were truly buzz words, it’s application in the real world was non-existent. The technology was half-baked but the possibilities it presented were countless.

Today, it’s not uncommon to walk into a corridor that lights up only when you step out of the elevator.

I also witnessed sensors that were capable of communicating with an air conditioning system — or the heater system — switching on when the user was a couple of kilometres away.

But what surprised me the most was the manner in which sensors were able to relay information to a central control room — garbage bins that can give feedback on whether they are full or not — stuff that sci-fi movies are made of, well not anymore because several of those technologies are being implemented across the region today.

This truly is a connected world we live in, the makings of a smart city are in place, no doubt.

Big data aggregators have mushroomed in the tech industry. But big data is void in itself and needs human intervention to crunch patterns and understand the nature in which energy is being consumed.

The possibilities are limitless, and Dubai is certainly at the forefront of introducing global trends. Watch this space...

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Construction Week - Issue 765
Jun 29, 2020