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Make no mistake: the cost of poor power quality for building stakeholders is far from an abstract problem. It is a costly affair to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars in potential annual losses, according to research from the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI).
Most often, power problems originate from within a facility’s four walls, including those resulting from poor systems implementation that can lead to significant operating cost increases and downtime risk for businesses. To further muddy already murky waters, the vast majority of power management issues are practically invisible until a system fails and the reality of risk exposure rears its ugly head.
Fortunately, there is a solution to mitigating business risk associated with poor power management, and it comes in the form of improved electrical power management systems (EPMS) integration via a Division 25 specification.
For consulting engineers, EPMS integration using Division 25 is not only an opportunity to mitigate risk, reduce cost, and deliver increased building value to your customer; it’s also a path to a better bottom line for your business.
In this post, I’ll briefly revisit the value of EPMS integration in smart buildings and explore why Division 25 is a critical tool to help consulting engineers deliver the bottom-line value that building owners, facility managers, and other key stakeholders expect.
EPMS integration delivers the power visibility businesses need
I’ve written in the past about power distribution risk exposure for businesses and how EPMS can help mitigate that risk. Fundamentally, EPMS integration can deliver the visibility building stakeholders need to turn power reliability into a competitive advantage for their business. For mission-critical facilities (i.e., hospitals) where downtime could lead to catastrophic financial and safety consequences, EPMS can significantly reduce the risk associated with downtime.
Risk mitigation is one of the primary benefits of smart building technologies valued by building stakeholders. Increasingly, stakeholders expect to have real-time data analytics baked into their building management capabilities so that they can monitor, test, and update key system functions.
With EPMS integration, your building stakeholders are gaining actionable insights into the power distribution and management applications for more efficient, forensic-level electrical distribution system monitoring and alarming, energy usage analysis and modeling, and much more.
Empowered with this information, building stakeholders can align teams responsible for business operations and building management around a common understanding of the root cause of power disturbances or unplanned outages to better mitigate risk and make more informed energy decisions.
The short- and long-term ROI of EPMS integration includes:
- Increased energy usage awareness for improved efficiency and energy cost savings
- Ability to easily update, scale, and / or adapt as the electrical system evolves
- Better visibility into the variables that affect energy, as well as utility bill errors to avoid overpaying
- Improved operational efficiencies through automation and centralization of multiple power management functions in a single, integrated system
- Ability to more cost-effectively integrate into existing facility infrastructure
Bring the power of iBMS and EPMS together with Division 25
To maximize the ROI for the end user, the EPMS integration has to not only be scalable and adaptable to future changes in the electrical system, but it also needs to be able to pull critical data from other key building management systems.
This is where true mechanical and electrical integration via Division 25 can put consulting engineers in the driver’s seat to deliver real building value for stakeholders.
Here’s an example of how integration drives value. Individually, a building management system (BMS) provides monitoring and control. But intelligent building management systems (iBMS) require EPMS integration for analytics capabilities. The EPMS is dependent on existing IT/OT systems to function as intended. The value in monitoring and management depends on how well different technologies were integrated on the front end, which is often a challenge with proprietary protocols and multiple vendors involved in the design-build process.
Specifying with Division 25 provides the infrastructure for this integration. It’s a powerful tool for consulting engineers to deliver the ROI that end-users demand.
Providing this ROI goes beyond basic automation and control of key building systems and facility operations. Division 25 delivers the infrastructure for HVAC, mechanical, and electrical systems in Divisions 23 and 26 to coexist harmoniously with critical IT/OT systems. Consulting engineers can then reduce costly redundancies, achieve labor and material savings, more easily adapt smart technologies as stakeholder requirements change, and minimize business risk exposure for the customer, short- and long-term.
Combined with the overall capital costs savings achieved through integration into a single, seamless system — engineers can deliver dramatically improved energy performance and overall building value.
To see this impact in action, read the latest Schneider Electric™ EPMS integration use case, and learn how a client leveraged a Division 25 specification to integrate EPMS and reduce costly design redundancies.