Welcome to the 10th BIG-EU Newsletter

It hurts that Bill Swan is passed away. The Vice President of the BIG-EU, the ubiquitous ambassador of the BACnet standard leaves a valuable legacy behind. It is up to us to carry on his work and continue to promote the standard beyond all boundaries. Exclusive reading for BIG-EU members in this newsletter: About new routes to certification, furthermore about promising events in Copenhagen, London, Lisbon and Saarbrücken.

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BACnet community mourns the death of Bill Swan

William O. Swan, vice president and honorary member of the BACnet Interest Group Europe (BIG-EU), our dear friend Bill, passed away on June 4th in California after a short and serious illness. He was taken suddenly and unexpectedly from among the community of BACnet developers and users.

„It was very emotional” reported Klaus Wächter at the recent SSPC135 meeting; “Even tears were shed showing how very great the loss of Bill was actually felt.”

Just last May Bill opened the 5th BIG-EU BACnet Plugfest in Saarbrücken, and in April he represented the BIG-EU at the BACnet Forum in London. As an omnipresent BACnet pioneer, he was always an ambassador for open communications standards in building services engineering and a mediator between the North American and European progress in the implementation and global dissemination of the standard.

A memorial service is scheduled for Wednesday, July 6th at 11 a.m. at St Bartholomew's Anglican Church located at 14821 Avondale Road NE, Woodinville, WA 98072. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to St. Bartholomew’s Anglican church for the benefit of Nazareth House Apostolate’s St Simeon Skete and their work in Sierra Leone and for Father Bien-Aime and his work with Haitian orphans.

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BIG-EU assures continuity in BTL-WG

Frank Schubert will represent the BIG-EU vote in the BTL working group until the new elections in fall 2011. After René Kälin’s resignation from the BTL working group this vote of the BIG-EU was vacant.

The BIG-EU thanks René Kälin for his hard work and his personal commitment. In order to secure a continued representation; the Advisory Board has temporary mandated Frank Schubert. The list of candidates for the election of the BIG-EU representative in the BTL-WG is open. Expressions of interest and proposals for candidates can be sent to the BIG-EU office,

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BIG-EU president back to STRABAG

BIG-EU president Volker Röhl changes his job back from YIT to STRABAG Property and Facility Services GmbH. With an enhanced scope of responsibilities he will advance to his new position starting July 1st. The presidency of the BIG-EU is not affected.

His enhanced tasks include the technical building services, fault management and supply guarantee such as reliability of electronic data processing centers. His new E-mail address is

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Certification scheme globally streamlined

As of September 2011 the BACnet conformance testing and certification process will be globally streamlined. The certification bodies will recognize the results of accredited test labs no matter in which country they are located. Thus BACnet devices that have passed the American BACnet Testing Laboratories (BTL) can be certified in Europe and vice versa.

The global BACnet conformance verification scheme that was jointly created by BACnet International and the BIG-EU is a big step towards transnational development of the BACnet standard. It assures a maximum of flexibility at the markets. In order to comply with the severe ISO standard it was necessary not only to have comparable results in a round robin test but also to audit the test labs. An updated certification handbook, that is being reviewed right now, will be available on the BIG-EU website in fall.

Audited test labs are
  • SoftDEL Ltd., Pune, India, that operates the BACnet Testing Laboratories for BACnet International,
  • WSPLab, Stuttgart, Germany, that is recognized as European BACnet test lab by the BIG-EU,
  • Applications for more European test labs are in process.
ISO 17025 accredited test labs are SoftDEL and WSPLab; the accredited certification body is WSPCert.

Contact for BTL listing is BACnet International, Duffy O’Craven, Contact for European Certificates is WSPCert,

The certification, which is based on the test plans of the BACnet Testing Laboratories (BTL), meets the European requirements of certification procedures and product standards as well. Moreover, the integration with the European Construction Products Directive is ensured.

For manufacturers, the mutual recognition of testing results means more flexibility in selecting the testing labs. BIG-EU President Volker Röhl says: "In terms of form and content European certification meets our energy efficiency guidelines. Depending on the target market, the manufacturer will decide on which laboratory he will be addressing." Both laboratories, the American BTL and the European WSPLab are available.

Andy McMillan, President of BACnet International, sees a rapid convergence to a single, world-wide framework for BACnet device certification. He said, "A global certification framework will make it much easier for global suppliers to meet the requirements of differing regulations in all regions. It is a natural and useful addition to the global use of the BTL mark and the BTL product listing."

The manufacturers are already anticipating a new certification scheme. Reportedly all testing capacity has been exhausted. So that considerations concerning two further BACnet testing laboratories are already underway.

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BACnet Forum London: 15 percent growth in UK

"Increasing the Value of Properties with BACnet" was the topic of the first BACnet Forum in London from 11 to 13 April. Around 130 participants from leading manufacturers, developers and users in the field of building automation took advantage of the opportunity to discuss the latest technical developments and to agree on a new strategy for establishing BACnet as the leading standard for building automation.

Leading Industry representatives such as BIG-EU President Volker Röhl and Ian Ellis, president of the Building Controls Industry Association, BCIA, illustrated the successful history and the prospects for BACnet and other open communication standards. Frank Mills of the British Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers, CIBSE, recognized the future of networked building automation in BACnet.

Jeremy Towler, chief market researcher at the Building Services Research and Information Association (BSRIA), stressed the importance of BACnet in worldwide building automation in his speech. "Since the first development of open communications protocols around 24 years ago, the market share of proprietary protocols fell to 45 percent in Europe and below 25 percent in North America. Along with it, the market share for BACnet rose to 24 percent in Europe and 47 percent in North America." At the same time he also pointed to existing differences on the European markets. While in Belgium, Germany, France and Italy, proprietary systems are at 40 percent and below, their share in the British market is the highest at 75 percent.

Towler projected15 percent annual growth for BACnet systems over the next five years. In the long run, BACnet is in a strong position. While the currently market dominating proprietary standards are increasingly losing importance, BACnet is on the way to becoming the general standard - for the entire field of building services, including safety and security systems, elevators, access control, smart grids, etc.

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Next BACnet Forums in Hong Kong and Amsterdam

The upcoming BACnet Forum welcomes BACnet users on Nov 10th, 2011 in Hong Kong. Perfectly situated in the Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Shenzhen region, it is a main attractor for green building technology in China. The next European BACnet Forum will take place on May 9th, 2012 in Amsterdam.

BIG-EU members will be invited for exhibition and reference presentations. Updated information will be available at

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Plugfest participants from the USA, India and all over Europe

The 5th BIG-EU Plugfest underscores the effort by the industry to facilitate vendor-independent systems with its growing portfolio of products for building automation. The manufacturers of automation products for building services tested the interoperability of their BACnet products on May 11th -13th. It was hosted by the Competence Center for Information and Communications Technology of the Saarland Chamber Crafts in Saarbrücken.

21 companies from Europe, the USA and India were represented with 44 participants. It was the fifth Plugfest for the BACnet Interest Group Europe (BIG-EU). "As the leading European BACnet organization, we are pleased with the broad participation which also provides functionally reliable networks with the new generations of devices," said BIG-EU Advisory Board member Frank Schubert at the opening.

The Plugfest was an open event by the BIG-EU, in which non-members participated for the first time. It offered the rare opportunity to network the products of different manufacturers in small alternating teams and test their communication behavior.

They are an essential prerequisite for energy and cost-efficient supply systems in homes and buildings. The Plugfest makes the application of the BACnet standard (ISO 16484-5) even more reliable in practice - an effort that is worth it. Networking systems with BACnet is that much easier when equipping industrial and office buildings as well as hotels, hospitals, sports arenas, train stations and airports.

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Portugal welcomes BACnet with open arms

The Portuguese distribution market is ready for multi-vendor applications and BACnet communication. The first recruitment meeting of Portuguese BACneteers took place on June 21st in Lisbon, right after a training of the BACnet Academy Europe that was conducted by BACnet trainer Frank Schubert on behalf of the BIG-EU. Thanks to the assistance of DOSAPAC the training material was presented synchronously in English and Portuguese.

The idea of common BACnet qualification and promotion activities was given by the Portuguese HVAC industry association APIRAC. Its secretary general Nuno Roque asked the BIG-EU for cooperation to establish a Portuguese BACnet Interest Group. As one of the first practical steps the technology center CENTERM will start courses for service providers, developers, engineers, planers and facility managers that promote BACnet as enabler for energy efficiency. As a second step APIRAC asks for the organization of a common BACnet Forum in early 2012.

The initial BACnet Academy in Lisbon was attended by 11 participants. They learned about the basics of interoperability, the benefits of BACnet, object types and services; project planning, conformance testing and certification. Frank Schubert complimented the group on the high level of knowledge. The pre-conditions for a sustainable development of BACnet technology in Portugal are fulfilled.

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Expert group heading qualification system

The AMEV and BIG-EU group of experts met on 5 May at the North Rhine-Westphalian Ministry of Economics in Düsseldorf. The minutes of the meeting are available on the BIG-EU Intranet.

A working group of BACnet users was set up to build up a BACnet qualification system. This working group's task is to define a set of requirements - and depending on the results, set up a testing profile for certified BACnet planners.

There was also a report on the interoperability research project commissioned by the German Federal Building Ministry. The title reflects the goal: "The Systematic Application-oriented Interoperability in the Construction of Multi-Vendor BACnet-based Building Automation Systems." The focus of the investigation is a standardized, reliable method to test the interoperability of different BACnet devices in multi-vendor BACnet systems.

Currently, several activities are underway to achieve nationally uniform and simplified energy efficiency targets by using BACnet building automation, among other things, as DIN 18599 Part X. With this the application of existing tools in BACnet projects should be simplified even further.

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Impact of nuclear withdrawal act on building efficiency

German nuclear withdrawal act comes with the encouragement for more invests in building efficiency. The increased relevance of energy saving building automation is subject of the upcoming BuildingEfficiency Dialogue. It takes place in Frankfurt on 28th of September. Exhibitor and sponsor lists are open for registration.

The 4th BuildingEfficiency Dialogue offers free attendance for visitors. Top class building efficiency can be realized with intelligent building systems in new and existing buildings. Integrated building automation reduces life-cycle costs and offer added values to buildings such as sustainability and attractiveness. These and similar issues are the focus of the upcoming event that will again attract the planers, specifiers, integrators and decision makers of the owners.

The BuildingEfficiency Dialogue is supported by the BIG-EU. Registration and more information on

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Important dates

13.-14.09.2011 Düsseldorf, D BACnet VDI Training
Frank Schubert,
28.09.2011 Frankfurt, D GebäudeEffizienz Dialog 2011
10.10.2011 Rome, I Advisory Board meeting
BIG-EU Office,
10.10.2011 Rome, I General Meeting
BIG-EU Office,
11.10.2011 Rome, I WG-M, WG-T meetings, Advisory Board meeting (continued)
BIG-EU Office,
12.10.2011 Rome, I WG-M, WG-T meetings,
BACnet Academy Europe - International training session in Italian language, Fiorenza Paoletti, MarDirect,
11.10.-12.10.2011 Las Vegas, Nevada, USA Facility Decisions 2011, BACnet International Office, Natalie Nardone,
10.11.2011 Hong Kong, CN BACnet Forum Hongkong, Maguy de Mercurio,
15.-17.11.2011 Atlanta, GA, USA BACnet International Plugfest 2011
29.11.2011 Amersfoort, NL BACnet Academy Europe - International training session in Dutch language, Britta von Helden, MarDirect,
07.12.2011 Frankfurt, D WG-M, WG-T meetings BIG-EU Office,

21.01.-25.01.2012 Chicago, Illinois, USA ASHRAE Winter Conference
23.01.-25.01.2012 Chicago, Illinois, USA AHR Expo, BACnet International joint booth, BACnet International Office, Natalie Nardone,
24.- 25.01.2012 Frankfurt, D BACnet VDI Training Frank Schubert, MBS GmbH,
07.-10.02.2012 Paris, F Interclima+elec 2012, Jochen Willems, MarDirect,
15.- 20.04.2012 Frankfurt, D Ilight+building 2012, BIG-EU joint booth Jochen Willems, MarDirect,
07.05.2012 Amsterdam, NL Advisory Board meeting BIG-EU Office,
08.05.2012 Amsterdam, NL Interclima+elec 2012, WG-M, WG-T meetings, Advisory Board meeting (continued) BIG-EU Office,
09.05.2012 Amsterdam, NL BACnet Forum Amsterdam, BIG-EU Office,
23.06.-28.06.2012 San Antonio, Texas, USA ASHRAE Annual Conference
10.09. 2012 Dresden, D AB/General Meeting (with votes)
11.09.2012 Dresden, D WG-T / WG-M meetings, AB meeting continued

BIG-EU Newsletter 10/2011, July 1st, 2011

BACnet Interest Group Europe
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