The News Room The News Room The News Room
Building sustainability Mar 22, 2024

President’s message: BACnet growth

The BACnet protocol is a global data communications standard that has had growing adoption, year over year since its publication in 1995. The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) developed BACnet as a cost-effective way to integrate systems from multiple vendors into a single, unified automation and control system. The protocol provides vendor-independent interoperability for networked equipment and control devices and supports a wide range of applications. Today BACnet is a national standard in more than 30 countries and has been an ISO global standard for 20-plus years. 

BACnet International facilitates the successful use of the BACnet protocol worldwide through education, product testing and certification, and promotion and brand awareness. Through its BACnet Testing Laboratories (BTL), BACnet International maintains a tested products database with over 1,300 listed products from 200-plus manufacturers, including Reliable Controls. Anyone can view the database of tested products. A BTL Listing is awarded only to a product that has successfully passed rigorous testing according to detailed BTL requirements. If a product changes in a way that impacts its BACnet functionality, it may require retesting to maintain its BTL Listed status.

BACnet International also administers the BACnet Institute, a free online learning environment that serves as a central source for globally relevant information and education related to BACnet. It provides an easy path to BACnet learning in multiple languages and knowledge for everyone involved with BACnet systems. These resources not only cover the basics of a BACnet-based system but also include topics such as interoperability, devices, specifying, networking, and security. Thousands of consulting engineers, system integrators, building operators and building engineers participate in the BACnet Institute community. Registration for the BACnet Institute is required, but the service and information it provides are free.

The institute publishes the BACnet Market Adoption Report, which you can download free of charge as a member. The latest report indicates that the market share of BACnet is massive and that most building projects worldwide specify the protocol. With the recent benefit of the BACnet Secure Connect communication option, cybersecurity threats are being mitigated and the BACnet protocol is expected to continue its excellent pace of growth for years to come (Figure 1).


Figure 1: BACnet projected market share, 2022-2027 (source: BACnet International).


At the 2024 AHR Expo in Chicago, BACnet International released an updated version of its BACnet Guide Specification that includes information on how to specify BACnet-based lighting systems. The document, free to download for BACnet Institute members, provides guidance on how to incorporate BACnet into Sections 25 and 26 of lighting specifications. 

The past 30 years have been an amazing and successful journey for the BACnet protocol. As an important contributor to the development, implementation, and promotion of BACnet, Reliable Controls and its global network of Authorized Dealers are proud to continue supporting the protocol and empowering stakeholders in our industry to benefit from this remarkable international standard. To learn more about how BACnet can benefit sustainability in your facility, find an Authorized Dealer near you today.