A building automation system is the high- technology tool or platform that
expands and enhances the capabilities of those responsible for operations
of a building.
Building automation system (BAS) is an umbrella term (and is also known
as building management system, BMS). It is used to refer to a wide range
of computerized building control systems, from special- purpose controllers,
to standalone remote stations, to larger systems including central computer
stations and printers. As discussed earlier, BAS is one of the major intelligent
A BAS comprises several subsystems which are connected in various
ways to form a complete system. The system has to be designed and engineered
around the building itself to serve the services systems for which it is
intended. Consequently, although the component parts used may be identical,
no two systems are the same, unless they are applied to identical buildings
with identical services and identical uses.
Building services include HVAC systems, electrical systems, lighting systems,
fire systems and security systems and lift systems. In industrial buildings
they may also include the compressed air, steam and hot water systems used
for the manufacturing process. A BAS may be used to monitor, control and
manage all or just some of these services. There are good reasons and ultimate
objectives in investing considerable sums of money in this way. These
will vary, depending on the use of the building and the way the building is
managed as well as the relationship between the value of the end product
and the cost of operating the building. It may also depend on the level of
sophistication of the building services and their capital cost.
To better understand the potential impacts of a BAS, it may be helpful to look at the needs of the building operation and management which a BAS addresses. Typical functions provided by building automation systems include:
• installation- management and control functions;
• energy- management functions (supervisory control);
• risk- management functions;
• information- processing functions;
• facility- management functions;
• performance monitoring and diagnosis;
• maintenance management.
Source: Intelligent Buildings and Building Automation, 2010 Edition
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