IMS Research forecasts that the market for building automation equipment for institutional users, such as schools and hospitals, will see double digit growth over the next three years. However, the analyst firm emphasizes that to take advantage of this growth, integrators and manufactures alike need to understand the individual requirements of these user markets.
“Schools and hospitals are large consumers of energy, with the occupants of the building often not paying the bill. Institutional facilities are also long term users of their buildings and infrastructure, which enables them to install equipment that has a longer payback period," comments William Rhodes, market analyst at IMS Research. "Building automation is one way in which these types of facilities can maximize energy efficiency and save money in a time of budget cuts and austerity measures.”
The firm's latest research notes that hospital buildings are open 24/7 and tend to be large complex buildings with nurse call, infant abduction and other low voltage systems running in tandem or separate to the automation solution. Education facilities tend to be more simplistic buildings in terms of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) control and automation. However, increasingly there has been an emphasis on ensuring sufficient ventilation within classrooms with studies showing high levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) can make children drowsy and tired.
Rhodes continues, “To ensure hospital projects are successful, integrators need to understand the complexities of the hospital building to take advantage of the energy savings and efficient operations that can be achieved. Additionally, one of the largest applications for CO2 sensors is education facilities. CO2 sensors are increasingly installed in classrooms as part of a wider building automation system to ensure sufficient ventilation and reduce the build-up of CO2.”
IMS posits that institutional users are in a prime position to take advantage of the movement to intelligent buildings because they are large consumers of energy, utilise many operational systems and are long term users of a facility. The management of the building's environment, physical security and other systems in a single unified solution can save energy and ensure the building runs as efficiently as possible, notes the analyst firm.
The IMS Research report on the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and Americas markets for building automation controllers, software and sensors presents base year and forecast data for nine end-user industries across EMEA and the Americas. An upcoming systems integration and aftermarket report looks at the trend towards integrated intelligent buildings.