The global BACS product market is expected to grow by around 4% per year up to 2024 with decent evolution across all products segments and with software growing at twice that rate. The advance of software is boosted by increasing uptake of energy efficiency and analytics software as building managers seek to understand all aspects of their buildings’ performance so that they can manage it more effectively. As the software and systems become more intelligent, they will increasingly be able to “self-manage” which will further aid building operators. If the systems are advanced enough to manage themselves to a greater degree, then so much the better.
BACS solutions are increasingly expanding out from their traditional role in managing HVAC to embrace other areas of building technology. Lighting, blinds, access controls, intrusion, surveillance cameras, fire notification etc. are gradually being added to BACS installations. The move towards the truly smart building, which optimises comfort and wellbeing as well as energy efficiency requires that these services ‘collaborate’ which is most likely to be achieved by working as part of a common system. The most commonly seen example at present is where HVAC, lighting and blinds are managed by a common system. In this scenario, blinds can be closed, and lighting adjusted as appropriate. This saves energy while creating better conditions within the building.
Similarly, coordinating HVAC systems with room booking systems and with presence detectors can ensure that rooms have the desired temperature and ventilation when needed, while minimising unnecessary heating or cooling.
While the wellbeing agenda is still in its early stages in most markets, in the longer term the advance of AI and growing expectations of what buildings can achieve is likely to see continued global growth of BACS and its gradual evolution into a true enabler of smart buildings.