Smart Building Environmental System Controls

The Texas Allergy, Indoor Environment,and Energy (TxAIRE) Institute

Perhaps the greatest opportunity to bring new technologies to bear in high-performance buildings is to increase in the use of sensing and controls to optimize comfort while minimizing energy consumption (and cost). The TxAIRE Homes will incorporate a new generation of "smart building" controls that will monitor all energy consumption and continually adjust climate control, lighting, potable water heating and even plug load demands based upon need. In normal operation, these adjustments will be "invisible" to the occupants.

When climate changes are desired, they can be made with the same ease as changing a television channel from your remote controller. Occupants will also be able to monitor performance in the same way that most automobiles provide engine performance feedback to the occupants. Occupancy-driven demands, HVAC performance, filter change reminders and even automatic odor removal can all be accessed from the living room sofa, or from your cell phone.

We spend 90% of our life in buildings. Shouldn't they be as convenient to monitor and control as you automobile in which we spend far less time?