Building Automation Systems (BAS) and the Importance of Control Systems Networking

Building Automation Systems are interlinked, centralized, networks of software and hardware which control and monitor the environment in industrial, commercial, as well as institutional facilities. The BAS system ensures the safety, comfort of building occupants and operational performance of the entire facility.

These control systems are perfect for installing in the new building and it can even install the old buildings replacing the outdated control systems or as a renovation part.

Typically, such control systems are installed in new buildings or as part of a renovation where they replace an outdated control system.

Related Terms

The automation or control of buildings uses varied terms and you may have heard some of them such as:

– BCS (Building Control System), BACS (Building Automation and Control Systems) and BMS (Building Management System) — defined as Building Automation System.

– Controls— describes different types of devices that control processes or particular pieces of equipment.

– DDC (Direct Digital Control) —describes the modern devices and their communication method (software and hardware). Overall, DDC products form the automation system controlling different building systems.

– EMS (Energy Management System) — it gives emphasis on monitoring/metering but generally known as Building Automation System.

– Energy System and Management — hope it’s clear now.

– Intelligent (Smart) Building— equipped (a building) with a BAS.

What does “Controlled” mean?

Building Automation System begins with a great control of electrical, mechanical, and MEP (plumbing) system. For example, the HVAC system (heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning) is controlled and its other pieces of equipment like-

– Boilers

– Chillers

– RTUs (Roof-top Units)

– AHUs (Air Handling Units)

– HPUs (Heat Pump Units)

– FCUs (Fan Coil Units)

– VAVs (Variable Air Volume boxes)

Lighting control is very important for optimizing the performance of a building. The things that bring everything under a total automation system include:

– Security

– Power monitoring

– Keypad and card access

– CCTV (Close Circuit video)

– Escalators/elevators

– Fire alarm system

– Water and plumbing monitoring

Types of Control and Building Automation Systems

The control systems were air-based or pneumatic early days and the HVAC system is restricted by various aspects. The pneumatic devices generally include sensors, controllers, valves, actuators, regulators, and positioners. This pneumatic control systems are found in various metropolitan areas as these installations (large base) were basically established during the 1960s and 1970s.

In the 1980s, the electronic control devices (analog) became very popular. It provided higher precision and faster response compared to pneumatics. In the 1990s, DDC (digital control) gave the taste of true automation. And the open communication system made a revolution in the 2000s.

Discover Safety Tips for Electrical Installations

If you are working with electricity and electrical supplies, it’s very important to make sure you are complying with recommended safety precautions. Whether you are an electrician, or a do-it-your-selfer, working with electricity can be a very dangerous undertaking. Here are some general rules you should be aware of and follow when you are working with electricity.

Electrical Installations

  1. Make sure your electrical supplies are in good condition. Do not work with frayed cords, damaged insulation or broken plugs.
  2. Take precautions when working on underground cabling. The digging that occurs can damage the wiring so be sure to wear insulated gloves. The damp soil surrounding the cable and ground faults can also be potentially dangerous.
  3. GFCI’s can be useful when doing electrical work as they protect against electric shock. They are designed to disconnect when they sense over current or short circuit faults. Be sure your GFCIs are properly connected and in working order monthly.
  4. Always turn off the mains when you are working on any electrical device in the home. It’s a good idea to put a sign on the service panel to let passerby’s know work is being done so nobody accidentally turns the panel back on.
  5. Be sure hands are dry when working with electricity. Water increases conductivity and should be avoided at all costs.
  6. Never use an aluminum or steel ladder when working with electricity. As these are conductors of electricity, an electrical surge can ground you causing the electrical current to pass through your body. Opt for ladders made of bamboo, wood, or fiberglass instead.
  7. When thinking about electrical supplies to use while performing electrical work, consider insulated tools.
  8. If you are going to be doing any soldering while working with electricity, be sure to take the appropriate safety precautions. Wear goggles and stay away from the fumes. Keep the iron in its stand when not in use and be aware that the iron can get extremely hot and cause burns.
  9.  Put a cap on the hot or live wire on an electric board or service panel. The bare ends of the live wire could short circuit with the neutral. The cap will insulate the ends of the cable and prevent shock if they are touched accidentally.

Working with electricity can be extremely dangerous, but taking the proper precautions when doing electrical work, and using the correct electrical supplies can decrease your risks of injury considerably. When considering what electrical supplies to use, look for a reliable electrical supply store. If you are buying electrical supplies online, be sure that you read the description carefully so you know the product will be the right one for your job. Electricians may consider buying products at electric wholesale suppliers. Good luck staying safe when performing your next electrical task!