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  • There is a big role for access control in making business more sustainable – ASSA ABLOY

    Sustainability is top of the agenda. Literally: In one recent poll of 3,000 global CEOs, 51% said sustainability was the biggest challenge on their desk. ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions EMEIA Product Marketing Director, Thomas Schulz, explains the role that access control must play in every organization’s sustainability strategy.

    In a survey for ASSA ABLOY’s most recent “Wireless Access Control Report”, 90 percent of industry professionals agreed sustainability would influence their future security commissioning. In the mission to make buildings both “greener” and “smarter”, access control can have a major impact.

    The UN Environment Programme estimates that buildings consume around 60% of the world’s electricity. In response, the World Green Building Council identifies energy efficiency as one essential feature of any “green building”. All technologies employed inside a building can help to reduce its footprint.

    Motives for “greening” buildings can also go beyond altruism. Almost a quarter of companies
    already see sustainability as a source of competitive advantage.

    For understanding more about sustainability>>>ASSA ABLOY

    The sustainability contribution of wireless access control

    As the way businesses filter access to their premises moved beyond lock-and-key technology, the first electronic solutions relied on cables. Although invasive and expensive to fit, these wired locks gave security and facility managers much greater control.

    Door technology has now evolved again. The same features are available without the expense or intrusion of wires. A new generation of wireless locks combines enhanced security with a leap forward in convenience and flexibility. Because they are quicker and more cost-efficient to install, these wireless locks help facility managers extend control within their premises further than ever before.

    The main advantage of choosing wireless over traditional wired access control is energy efficiency. In comparison, a wireless access control device consumes less power at every stage of its life cycle.

    Cable-free fitting is much faster, requiring fewer installer journeys to and from a facility. It is also less intrusive: Leading wireless locks to require little or no drilling around the door, whereas wired access control needs cabling through and partly around the door. Wall damage is unavoidable.

    Wireless locks also work more efficiently. Instead of an “always on” electricity connection to power their locking magnets, they only “wake up” when presented with a credential. By deploying battery-powered wireless locks, companies can expect significant energy savings during operation: more than 70%, or thousands of euros over a typical installation’s lifetime, according to one benchmarking study.

    Wireless devices may enjoy an extended lifetime, too. They can usually be moved when spaces are reconfigured — unlike wired locks. Maintenance requirements are minimal: All they need is a new standard battery every 2 years (on average), which again cuts unnecessary technician and contractor journeys.

    “The improved energy efficiency of wireless locks applies from installation all the way to the operational stage,” explains Leandro Peraro, EMEIA Sustainability Manager at ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions.

    “Plus, there are wider benefits for buildings when using wireless solutions. For example, monitoring more access points ensures doors are properly closed which can, in turn, improve a building’s thermal efficiency.”

    For understanding more about sustainability>>>ASSA ABLOY

    The next evolution of wireless access control: energy harvesting and mobile keys
    Recent advances in energy harvesting technology aim to remove energy use at the door altogether, via digital locks powered by energy harvesting technology. These so-called “self-powered” devices do not require batteries or cables — or any external electricity source at all.

    With key-based access control based on this technology, for example, lock electronics harvest energy from the thrust or turning of a key. Kinetic energy from the keyholder is recycled to power communication between credentials, the device, and the central access system.

    The latest generation of smart credentials can also contribute to improved sustainability performance. Some wireless locks support mobile keys — smartphone-based credentials which communicate with a wireless lock via NFC or Bluetooth.

    With these mobile keys, no smartcards or fobs are required, reducing the unnecessary use of plastics. The smartphone also enables efficient technologies such as CLIQ Connect, where keyholders update credentials via a smartphone app and a Bluetooth connection. With this solution, mobile workers no longer need to travel between key updating points: They have the only updater they need in their pocket. As a result, they drive fewer miles and waste less fuel.

    For understanding more about sustainability>>>ASSA ABLOY

    Energy usage and green building certification

    Wireless access technologies also have a role in gaining certifications to the most important international green building certifications. Again, the business benefit may be material as well as ethical: One London property market expert estimates the rental premium for BREEAM certified office buildings at between 3.7% and 12.3%.

    In certification schemes such as LEED, BREEAM, and others, energy efficiency is a key assessment criterion. Measurable improvements in energy performance can help a project receive its desired award.

    ASSA ABLOY Group has created a number of resources to support a submission to the most important green building schemes. These include detailed contribution sheets for BREEAM, LEED, DGNB, WELL, HQE, and Green Star. Each one details how multiple products and technologies contribute to criteria or credits.

    For understanding more about sustainability>>>ASSA ABLOY

    Energy-harvesting locks and “sustainable construction”

    The role of access control is more than theoretical. It is already making a difference in real projects in Europe and beyond.

    One example is a landmark new residential development in Esbjerg, Denmark, which focuses squarely on sustainability. Indeed, the developer is a Premium Member of Green Building Council Denmark — an organization that promotes sustainable or “green” building.

    Over 300 apartments connect with common areas which offer multiple opportunities for social activity and “co-living”. To ensure access control matched their sustainable commitment, they looked for an energy-saving solution that would operate without batteries or wires. They also wanted cloud-based management to give staff convenient, 24/7 control from anywhere. Integration-readiness was another priority, to provide seamless operation with other building technologies, including online readers and door-phones, and inbuilt future-proofing: They need the ability to add new features or capacity
    anytime.

    PULSE key-operated electronic cylinders with energy-harvesting technology now secure more than 300 apartments: “We went for a future-proof solution which was maintenance-free and where we did not have to change batteries,” explains Peter Høpfner, COO and Founder, A Place To.

    PULSE devices are self-powered: The energy generated on key insertion is harvested to energize encrypted electronic security.

    Access control is managed in the cloud with Incedo Open software. The administrator can change anyone’s access permissions online; keys are quickly updated at integrated door-phones or online readers. This ensures resident authorizations are always current.

    The PULSE key also contains an RFID chip. It doubles as an access card for the entrance and communal areas: convenient for residents and, from a sustainability perspective, reduces unnecessary plastic use.

    For understanding more about sustainability>>>ASSA ABLOY

    Energy savings with an integrated, wireless solution
    As the home of the renowned St Andrews Prize for the Environment, the University of St Andrews has sustainability at its heart. For student accommodation, managers sought an energy-efficient access solution that respected and reflected these principles.

    Their new Aperio wireless access control devices integrate fully with both the university’s existing system and their student ID card. Security managers enjoy the efficiency benefits of controlling access from a single point, and in real-time, for multiple buildings.

    In comparison to a wired access control solution, Aperio devices offer significant energy efficiency benefits. Escutcheons are wireless, so can be installed with little energy use and no need for cabling to the mains. They consume no energy when idle and their standard batteries even consume minimal power during operation. Maintenance is just a battery change every two years (with typical use).

    Here and elsewhere, a wireless access control solution is part of the picture as we try to move buildings and businesses toward a more sustainable future.

    For understanding more about sustainability>>>ASSA ABLOY

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