Access control for the next generation of smart buildings

Thomas Schulz’ and Assa Abloy´s approach toaccess control and smart buildings.

Several ingredients make up what we call the “smart building”. But whatever recipe you use, integrated functionality, automation and greater sustainability feature. A smarter building should help you use resources more efficiently and work more flexibly – creating competitive advantage, if implemented well.

Thomas Schulz, from Assa Abloy Opening Solutions EMEA, highlights the role of electronic access control in an intelligent building.

According to Intel, by 2025 the global value of IoT technology could amount to $6.2 trillion, most spread between healthcare and manufacturing sectors*. Intel identifies “digital locks” as a key category in what Cisco forecasts to be 500 billion online devices by 2030**. That sounds like a lot of wires. Yet, when it comes to smarter building security, it need not be. Wireless access control offers flexibility, intelligence and powerful security without a cable in sight.

Where once only secured just a building’s main entrance and perimeter, now you wirelessly equip interior doors to limit access to staff with specific needs or authority. Audit trails and user data flowing from doors back to the building management system inform smarter resource decisions.

Wireless devices with RFID readers are also easier to retrofit to older buildings. Not every smart building is constructed from the foundations up. In Assa Abloy’s most recent Wireless Access Control Report***, IHS Markit analyst Jim Dearing concurs: “[wireless] locks have fewer components plus they can be installed at any stage during construction, meaning they are a better fit for retrofit projects.”

One control panel, multiple smart functions

In a smart building, all technologies pull together – including access control. In an earlier edition of the report, Blake Kozak at IHS wrote: “Wireless locks are often specially designed for integration with other systems. The integration capabilities and ease of use can be a significant benefit.” The right wireless devices are ready for single-seat building management.

Interoperability between security technologies also ends your reliance on proprietary solutions. You can onboard a new building, for example, by installing the best locks for the job, not merely whatever your legacy system has on the shelf.

Saving time and money

One Assa Abloy wireless lock technology, Aperio, is built on an open platform specifically for integration with third-party building systems and technologies. Aperio batterypowered cylinders, handles, escutcheons, security locks and server rack locks work with systems from over 100 different manufacturers.

For example, at Ghent’s Hospital Maria Middelares, Nedap’s AEOS platform integrated with Aperio wireless locks controls every door, credential and user from a single interface –saving the facility time and money.

Smarter building security demands better energy efficiency

According to the Smart Buildings Alliance, buildings account for around 45 percent of our energy consumption****. One recent UK study by EDF Energy suggests the average organisation could save over £46,000 per year with simple energy efficiency measures*****.

The locks you choose have an impact – on power use, efficiency and ultimately sustainability. Magnets in a standard wired lock, for example, need mains electricity. They are always “on”. Most wireless locks are powered by an off-theshelf battery. In the latest models, it needs replacing just once every 60,000 lock/unlock cycles******.

Self-powered cylinders

An even smarter solution is offered by Pulse, a new electronic access control system with self-powered cylinders, padlocks and electronic keys – and no need for batteries or any external power supply. Energy harvesting technology generates electricity to activate a lock’s encrypted electronic security, just from the insertion and turning of a Pulse key. If the key’s Seos credential is authorised, the door unlocks. An IQ boost for any building that’s also simple, sustainable and smart.

Thomas Schulz

Assa Abloy Opening Solutions
EMEA Marketing & Communications Director
Digital and Access Solutions



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