San Ramon (USA) – January 19th, 2023. The business opportunities with EnOcean technology are brighter than ever! Join us for a look back and a look forward to our promising future.
The EnOcean Alliance looks back at a successful 2022, with growth in all key indicators such as membership, certified products, social media, marketing/expo & event presence and projects successfully realized by members. In addition, the new Smart Spaces pillar, collecting data such as desk/office occupancy, temperature/humidity and air quality, and energy usage to improve efficiency, reduce costs and enable a healthier and safer environment, has continued to take off successfully.
We proudly welcome over 20 companies who joined the Alliance in 2022, including Prysmian/Draka Comteq (Italy, UK), SCSK Corp., Sunflame and Yasunaga Corp. (Japan), TechData, Wharton Electronics and Ready Controls (UK), Magnum First, GenerEn and Building Robotics (USA), Martin Renz GmbH and Presto-Vedder (Germany), Fischer International (Denmark) and Firvena s.r.o. (Czech Republic). We also welcomed NIFCO (Japan) as a promoter member of the Alliance.
Looking forward to 2023, the Alliance expects further growth and success of the Alliance and the energy harvesting wireless technology through strong market demand.
With energy prices rising as much as factor 2 to 3 in many regions, the requirement to save energy will continue to increase. Energy harvesting sensors will provide the data necessary to assist in automatically saving energy. For example, in Germany, where all public buildings are now limited to maximum heating up to 19 deg C, which will enable energy savings of up to 18% compared with heating up to 22 deg C, temperature sensors in every room will provide the data necessary to ensure and enforce this.
Other simple applications, such as energy harvesting door and/or window sensors, which will send signals warning of being left open to heating or cooling systems to turn off or down will assist in saving significant energy. Energy harvesting-based heating valves with no battery maintenance nor cables will become a more important part of automated heating control and energy saving.
Energy costs as well as high inflation and interest rate rises will also lead to many property owners/ occupiers looking at how to save costs. One key potential cost saving is in reducing unused space, for example in an office. With a large number of people moving to hybrid working, most offices are occupied 70% or less at any one time, meaning that typically 30% of space is unused. Energy harvesting-based sensors can monitor and report occupancy rates right down to seat or desk level, but also in conference rooms, rest rooms, canteens and rest areas, etc.
This data can be used to optimize space requirements/usage and minimize energy and maintenance costs. A single desk in a major city can cost 9.000 $ / Euros per year in space, energy and maintenance costs – a significant amount of 30% or more are unused at any one time.
Sustainability on the rise
The number of corporations, countries, institutes and even continents setting carbon neutral / sustainability goals over the next years is increasing weekly. According to the UN, more than 70 countries, 1,200 companies, 1,000 cities, 1,000 educational institutions and 400 financial institutions have set net zero goals. EnOcean Alliance promoter Microsoft for example, has set its goal to become carbon neutral by 2030. Promoter Deutsche Telekom has the aggressive goal of becoming climate neutral by 2025.
Buildings account for almost 40% of our global energy use and around 36% of our gas emissions, so to reach all of these goals, a huge investment in all existing and new buildings will be necessary. This is a huge opportunity for energy harvesting sensors, who are the “eyes and ears” of the building, providing the data necessary to achieve lower emissions.
- Installing a building automation system can save around 36% in HVAC costs and 23% for lighting, according to Mid-Atlantic Controls (2022).
- Installing wireless sensors and switches helps to improve the carbon footprint of a building. A large commercial building with 20.000 devices can save up to 300km of copper wire, 10 Tons of CO2 output and 10 man years of installation time compared to a wired solution.
- According to TH Rosenheim, Germany, a smart building using wireless sensors and switches can be installed for 20% to 30% lower cost than a wired solution.
Many governments have already introduced significant programs to encourage the move to energy efficiency and sustainability or climate neutrality. The European Green Deal and Next Generation EU are already encouraging investments in this field, with one-third of the total EU budget up to 2027 dedicated to this in various grants and loans. The Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) 2018 in the EU, which still has to be implemented by most member counties, is aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the EU by 80-95% compared with 1990 by 2050 (with various steps defined by 2025, 2030 and 2040). In the USA, a number of initiatives have been announced, such as the $3,5 trillion budget plan, which included provisions cutting more than a billion tons of annual greenhouse-gas emissions by 2030.
What’s in for the EnOcean Alliance?
All of the above will increase the necessity and the demand for energy harvesting-based sensors and switches, ensuring the healthy growth and stability of the EnOcean Alliance. In addition, collaborations between various technologies and Alliances will become necessary to simplify and increase the adoption of smart homes or smart building installations. Matter is one good example of this, focussing currently on Smart Home solutions. In professional/commercial buildings and industrial installations, we expect to see additional cooperations and collaborations between various Alliances to improve, simplify and ensure openness in these, all of which are key focus areas and visions of the EnOcean Alliance.
In short, things are bright, and we look forward to new opportunities.
We at the EnOcean Alliance wish you a successful 2023 and look forward to further excellent cooperation for our mutual benefit.