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Introduction

Consider a building that dims the lights when no one is there, changes the temperature depending on real-time weather data, and even produces renewable energy.  In the current climate, when energy efficiency is paramount and demands for quality of life are rising, smart buildings are the way to go.

While the potential for energy savings is considerable, energy efficiency improves substantially, and energy savings range from 30 to 50%. Managing these smart systems has its own set of challenges:

  • Data silos: Different building systems frequently run independently, resulting in data islands that impede complete energy analysis.
  • Complexity: The sheer quantity of sensors and devices can produce massive volumes of data, making it challenging to extract useful insights.

Databricks is the solution to these obstacles. Databricks with partners in India, is here to provide you with smart building services. It’s an integrated data platform that eliminates silos and centralises all of your building data.  Consider it a smart conductor for your smart building. Databricks assists you in orchestrating all data symphonies, transforming your building into a long-lasting masterpiece of efficiency and comfort. By using real-time data, Databricks gives actionable insights that assist in optimal energy use, forecasting maintenance needs, and even personalising occupant comfort.

In this article, we will learn how to harness the power of Databricks so that smart buildings may genuinely live up to their name, resulting in a future in which we live and work in harmony with nature.

Databricks: Integrating and Optimising Smart Building Data

Databricks is your smart building’s central nervous system, gathering data from HVAC systems, lighting sensors, security devices, and smart metres. The unified data lake ingests and purifies data streams, breaking down silos and providing accessible information on your building’s energy usage.

However, Databricks does more than merely store information. Its powerful analytics engine enables you to:

  • Beyond Data Storage: Databricks is more than a vault. Its robust data analysis engine digs deep, identifying abnormalities (rogue air conditioning spikes?), recognising trends (lights on while rooms are empty?), and forecasting future demands (cold mornings require pre-heating).
  • AutoML Makes Model Building Easier: Imagine designing a model that predicts appropriate lighting settings depending on occupancy and daylight without coding knowledge. AutoML facilitates model selection and configuration, allowing even people without extensive ML understanding to get insights.
  • MLOps Streamlines Deployment and Management: Built-in tools guarantee models migrate smoothly from development to real-world impact, keeping your building’s intelligence current and effective.
  • Reliable, Secure, and Performant: Databricks prioritises security, with strict security mechanisms and a scalable design that ensures consistent performance.

These capabilities result in substantial energy savings as a result of:

  • Waste Reduction: Anomalies detected flag inefficient equipment or excessive energy use, allowing for targeted repairs and modifications.
  • Demand Prediction: Databricks can help you optimise energy supply by forecasting peak energy loads. You may carefully plan your electricity use, use on-site renewables, or implement load shedding at peak hours.
  • Automating Control: Energy control systems may be automated using machine learning models. Lights dim when rooms are vacant, and HVAC systems adapt depending on real-time occupancy and weather data.

Databricks provides you with smart building solutions enabling you to take proactive control over your smart building’s energy impact with their revolutionary innovation services. It’s like having a personal energy coach who analyses data, provides insights, and recommends specific steps to conserve energy and create a more sustainable future for your smart building.

Viessmann & Databricks: A Match Made in Energy Efficiency

While smart building technology promises to save energy, handling the massive data generated by sensors and systems may be intimidating. That’s where Databricks shines: it turns data into practical insights that result in demonstrable energy savings and a more sustainable future. Let’s look at Viessman, a prominent manufacturer of high-efficiency heating and renewable energy systems, and how they used Databricks.

Viessmann, a leading provider of sustainable climate and renewable energy solutions, faced challenges stemming from an outdated data architecture that created silos, incurred high growth costs, and had stability issues. This hindered Viessmann’s ability to deliver timely machine learning (ML)-driven insights, causing delays in product innovations reaching consumers. Recognizing the importance of speed and agility, Jan Metzger, Lead Data Engineer at Viessmann, emphasized the need for a cost-effective solution to scale smart energy products. The answer came in the form of Databricks.

Along with a Databricks partner in Germany, they Implemented the Databricks Lakehouse Platform as the central hub for data and analytics, Viessmann achieved improved efficiency. This enhanced collaborative and open approach allowed Viessmann’s data teams to construct ML models faster, accelerating the transition from idea to production solution. This shift positively impacted various aspects, from forecasting system problems to providing clients with actionable insights on utility bill savings.

One specific application highlighted the platform’s efficacy—addressing a common concern in heating systems: a drop in water pressure. Databricks enabled Viessmann’s teams to efficiently create models for detecting anomalies, and issuing warnings to customers when pressure drops. Moreover, the platform facilitated training algorithms to forecast energy consumption and predict the remaining lifetime of system components. This empowerment allowed Viessmann to provide practical recommendations to customers at the opportune moment.

Marina Pausch, Head of Data Science at Viessmann, emphasized the seamless collaboration between algorithm development and data engineering, streamlining the process of turning prototypes into reality. The company’s commitment to innovation extended to reducing onsite visits through remote service powered by Databricks, resulting in a 50% decrease in mandatory visits. This not only enhanced overall productivity for partners and technical teams but also allowed installers to provide better and more cost-effective services to customers, further solidifying Viessmann’s position at the forefront of sustainable and efficient energy solutions.

A Catalyst for Sustainable Smart Buildings and Renewable Energy Optimization

Databricks holds immense promise for the evolution of both sustainable smart buildings and renewable energy optimization. In the realm of smart buildings, Databricks integrates seamlessly with emerging trends such as edge computing and artificial intelligence (AI). It facilitates real-time data processing at the edge, enhancing the efficiency of IoT systems within these buildings. The platform’s robust AI support enables the implementation of advanced algorithms, optimizing predictive maintenance, and energy usage, and providing personalised user experiences.

Moreover, Databricks plays a pivotal role in renewable energy optimization, as evidenced by its transformative impact on companies like SSE Energy Solutions. Transitioning from virtual machines to the lakehouse architecture, SSE Energy Solutions achieves responsive week-ahead optimization, improving overall efficiency and reducing associated costs. A 12x reduction in time spent on manual forecasting and £350K savings per year owing to energy optimisation are projected, resulting in decarbonisation and cost reductions. The scalability and adaptability of Databricks ensure its relevance in the evolving landscape, contributing to smarter, greener buildings and a sustainable energy future. The broader implications include significant environmental benefits, reducing energy consumption, and carbon footprints while enhancing the quality of life for building occupants.

Conclusion

The future of smart buildings is written in data, and Pratiti Technologies, your trusted digital transformation partner, is ready to help you with our innovation consulting services. We combine our building technology knowledge with Databricks’ unrivalled capacity to extract actionable information, optimise energy use, and create sustainable places.

Imagine buildings that breathe nature, respond to weather patterns, anticipate tenant demands, and reduce their environmental impact. Pratiti’s ability to leverage developing technologies makes this goal a reality. We assist you in breaking down data silos, using the power of real-time analytics, and enabling your smart building to realise its full potential.

Join us on our quest to a greener tomorrow. Contact us. now to find out how with our innovation services we can help you use the potential of Databricks.

Nitin
Nitin Tappe

After successful stint in a corporate role, Nitin is back to what he enjoys most – conceptualizing new software solutions to solve business problems. Nitin is a postgraduate from IIT, Mumbai, India and in his 24 years of career, has played key roles in building a desktop as well as enterprise solutions right from idealization to launch which are adopted by many Fortune 500 companies. As a Founder member of Pratiti Technologies, he is committed to applying his management learning as well as the passion for building new solutions to realize your innovation with certainty.

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