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January 2017
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How IoT and Big Data are Transforming Green Buildings into Living Buildings

This ability of Green Building to be self-aware, self-regulated and optimized transforms it into “Sustainable Green Building” also sometimes termed as “Living Building.”

Subrata Bhattacharya
Subrata Bhattacharya

Johnson Controls
India Engineering Center


Ankur Thareja

Ankur Thareja

Johnson Controls
India Engineering Center


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According to EPA, “Green Building” is the practice of creating structures and using processes that are environmentally responsible and resource-efficient throughout a building's lifecycle from design, construction, operation, and maintenance. Sustainable building design is an inherent part of architecture from time immemorial. Historically passive design principles were incorporated to make a habitable place in harmony with local conditions.  After 1970’s energy crisis these principles became part of standards and compliance. Today, there are many standards and agencies prescribing them with the touch of localizations such as IGBC, USGBC, EPA, and Building IQ, etc.


Now the question is, with so many standards, best practices, and compliances/norms existing for over 2-3 decades; are we able to achieve our desired outcome?  This is a complicated question, and the answer to this cannot be a direct Yes, or No, we need to contextualize the problem statement and provide perspective to it.  Over the  years the “Green Buildings” initiative has been very successful in most areas such as creating awareness, adoption, and influencing market of energy efficient materials and design practices. The focus was around standard and compliance for design, material, site selection to continuous improvement, monitoring, tracking of operations and energy use of building through the lifecycle. 

Green Buildings design and systems are static though operations and building use need a dynamic response to occupant needs, operating policies, change in use of space, etc. Historically, Green Building faces challenges due to limited opportunities for interacting different building equipment and systems to get a holistic view of energy and other green factors to

The rapid pace of technology development has created a lot of new opportunities for overcoming the challenges faced. Internet of Things (IoT): the generalization in instrumenting buildings with sensors, actuators, micro-chips, micro- and nano-embedded systems and advancements in IT technology and data convergence have found increased relevance in the way Green Buildings are operated transforming them to “Connected Building.”

Connected Buildings” generate huge data from multiple systems such as energy, IT, Access, Security, Operations, etc.  Due to variety, velocity, the volume of data, conventional methods of manual analysis doesn’t produce desired results. Therefore the industry categorizes this as a Big Data problem.  Big Data is all about seeing and understanding the relationships, patterns within and among pieces of data generated from multiple sources for operational efficiencies, reducing energy consumption, improving occupant experiences, and optimizing financial performance.

IoT combined with ubiquitous computing provides enormous data and information about the building. These relationships enable Green building to forecast, predict, and optimize its operations and needs. This ability of Green Building to be self-aware, self-regulated and optimized transforms it into “Sustainable Green Building” also sometimes termed as “Living Building.

Living Buildings

 
Below is grid for Green concepts incorporation and pervasiveness of IoT technologies and Big Data analysis on impact or shift/move of “Conventional Building” to “Living Building.”

Green Grid

IOT and Big Data convergence with Green Buildings is right now in its nascent stage. This convergence is impacting industry and creating a pull by

All of these changes are resulting in a significant growth of sustainable market and technology. Wi-Fi connectivity chipset shipments across Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, NFC, GPS, and ZigBee, is expected to reach almost 9 billion annual shipments in 2019 as per ABI Research. As per Cisco, half of connected devices will account for IoT (4.5 billion in 2015 to, 12.2 billion by 2020).  Therefore it is clear that IoT and Big Data will act as enablers for transforming green buildings into self-sustained “Living Buildings.”


About the Authors

Subrata Bhattacharya – Managing Director, Johnson Controls – India Engineering Center.
Subrata is Managing Director -Johnson Controls (India Engineering Center).  A business leader with 20 years of experience in Building automation and controls industry across building verticals. He worked and led teams/businesses across the spectrum of new construction, building retrofit, service, performance contracting, remote monitoring/ fault diagnostics, products, and solution development. He is key patron for implementation of the cloud and IoT strategy of Johnson Controls. subrata_bhattacharya@hotmail.com

Ankur Thareja - Group Head & Senior General Manager, Advanced Product Research, Johnson Controls – India Engineering Center.
Ankur is Sr. General Manager & Group Head- Advanced Product Research with Johnson Controls- India Engineering Center. He has a career graph spanning over 15 years in Building Controls, Energy Solutions, and Connected Services (Hadoop and Azure based solutions) .  He is a big proponent of IoT, Big Data, and Cloud-based solutions. He is a Certified Energy Auditor (CEA) from Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), Certified Measurement and Verification Professional (CMVP) by Efficiency Valuation Organization (EVO) and an Accredited Professional from Indian Green Building Congress (IGBC).
ankurthareja@gmail.com


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