Building automation and home automation, what's the difference?

Building automation is home automation these are words that have now entered common language, but what difference is there?

What the two definitions have in common is the reference to technologies that can improve the quality of life of people in environments.

The difference lies in the size of the application area: the home automation typically concerns the home environment and the ability to manage the machines in the home environment (appliances, lighting, shutters, etc.).

There building automation stands, so to speak, at a higher level and takes into consideration the entire building (a condominium, an office building or the building of a factory) with the technologies that also allow to manage technological systems, communication networks and computer networks that interface with public networks.

In short and to fix the concepts in a simple way, with the home automation we talk about 'smart home' while with the building automation of 'intelligent building'.

Although both concepts are born with a broad meaning linked to 'comfort and' quality of life ', today home automation is building automation we talk more and more often with reference to energy saving in the management of homes and buildings.

The systems of home automation and of building automation they can actually do a lot to help us save energy in everyday life, for example by automatically turning off the lights in empty rooms or by optimizing the operation of air conditioning systems according to climatic conditions.

Considering that today in industrialized countries buildings absorb on average 40% of the energy produced by the various power plants, the contribution of home automation is building automation it also becomes important in reducing CO₂ emissions and global pollution.

ZVEI, the German association of the electrotechnical industry, conducted a study which demonstrates the possibility of reducing consumption and lighting costs of a building by up to 80% by adopting 'intelligent' management systems based on building automation.

Inside homes, consumption for heating and ventilation could be reduced by 45% by adopting systems of home automation which allow independent control of the room-by-room temperature and of the heating system according to the external temperature.

A far from trivial application of home automation for comfort and energy saving are the so-called 'intelligent shutters' which, by rising and lowering independently, allow you to manage the solar gains and to regulate, even here independently, the operation of the heating.

Today when it comes to building automation is home automation reference is almost always made to the KNX standard, another thing to know. KNX (owned by the KNX Association) is the first and currently the only 'open' standard for home automation is building automation independent of the platforms of the individual manufacturers. It is a European (EN 50090 - EN 13321) and worldwide (ISO / IEC 14543) approved standard.

Among the related articles you may also be interested in: Lighting and energy saving

Video: BAMTV 001: How to program a building automation system (September 2021).