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Independent testing for conformance to BACnet[R] begins. (News Briefs).

For many years, the building industry struggled with the problem of integrating control devices made by different manufacturers in order to optimize operations, improve safety, and reduce maintenance costs. NIST researchers worked with industry to develop a communication protocol standard for building automation and control systems known as BACnet[R] that was adopted in the mid-1990s.

A marketplace barrier to BACnet products has been the lack of an independent testing program to verify that products correctly implement the standard. Consequently, NIST created a BACnet Interoperability Testing Consortium with 22 private sector companies. NIST researchers and the consortium partners worked together to develop test procedures that are now incorporated in a draft American national standard. NIST also developed software tools that can be used to implement the BACnet tests. The results of these efforts have now resulted in the creation of the BACnet Manufacturers Association (BMA), a private sector BACnet Testing Laboratory (BTL), and the completion of the first set of tests on commercial products.

The BMA will issue a BTL mark and publish a list of products that have passed the tests. The goal is for the BTL mark and listing program to play a role in the building automation and control industry much like the more well know Underwriters Laboratory mark and listing program for product safety.

CONTACT: Steven Bushby, (301) 975-5873; steven.bushby@nist.gov.
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Publication:Journal of Research of the National Institute of Standards and Technology
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 1, 2002
Words:227
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