Before people were confined to their houses in this COVID-19 era, interaction with strangers andgoing off to new places have never been limited. Going to all these modern buildings and establishments, they may have encountered motion or occupancy sensors at least once a day. These sensors detect motion to help eradicate people’s presence and are usually used to do things like adjusting ventilation or temperature settings in the Heater, Ventilation, and Air Condition system, as well as automatically turn on or off lights when people walk into or go out of the room.
While everyone is working hard to create a new normal that presents less risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus, increased use of Occupancy Counting Sensors offers a lot of opportunity for property owners from strip malls, hospitals, building guests, and tenants like retail stores or restaurants. In this article, we will take a closer look at the opportunity presented by this technology. First and foremost, how does Occupancy Counting Sensor work?
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These detectors trigger automatic responses in building systems by using various techs like ultrasonic, radar, microwave, micro-vibration patterns, or infrared as a stand-in for visual representations of the body. These kinds of sensors can measure the heat difference with pyroelectric sensors.
Because the human body radiates heat, a human’s presence is detected using these sensors, as differences in heat from fixed points like the floor, furniture, or wall that it is mounted on. Environmental detectors that measure humidity, carbon dioxide, and temperature can also be used as an occupancy counting sensor since the human body causes particular environmental measures because of the body’s natural emission process.
These devices that rely on the ultrasonic techs can send high-frequency sound waves into a particular area and measure the reflection patterns. These high-frequency sound waves are unintelligible to human ears. When pattern changes, these sensors, consider the space occupied.
Some of the most promising new detectors measure micro-movements or vibrations that are created when the heart pumps blood all over the body or if the person breathes. These devices are successful because they offer a complete security and privacy protection; they experience minimal impact from outside conditions. It can be deployed in different open-concept indoor spaces.
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Using occupancy counting sensor in property re-entry plans
Although local and federal guidelines for reopening the country’s economy are still in the works by health care professionals, health officials, and policymakers, we can be certain that social distancing will be the primary focus of the guideline. It puts a lot of pressure on tenants and establishment owners to operate at a limited capacity and prove to regulators and consumers that people are keeping a safe distance from one another even without local authorities to regulate them or implement the law.
The industry expects an increase in motion and counting sensors everywhere possible to limit the number of areas that need to be covered in a given space. Experts also believe that public kiosks, as well as touch screen devices in public spaces, maybe abandoned sooner or later. Because of these reasons, occupancy counting sensors need to be a vital part of every building re-entry plan. Listed below are some opportunities experts see from this kind of technology.
As mentioned before, the fewer things people need to touch in an establishment, the better people will feel about going in that space. This kind of sensors, including the presence and motion detection technology, can automatically be used by business owners to automatically turn on or off the lights, adjust or re-set thermostats, open doors, or count people in the vicinity.
People who operate and own large buildings already know the requirements that commercial properties greater than 5,000 square feet require an automatic shut-off capability in certain property areas. But as we mentioned before, there is a big chance that regulations will be imposed on smaller properties before they are allowed to reopen in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Though it may not be particularly required, occupancy counting sensors will most likely help business owners to comply with new laws that government agencies established.
As establishment capacities will be greatly minimized to comply with social distancing protocols, these detectors can help business owners track the number of people in their building.
Measuring the distance between people
A step beyond counting individuals, some sensors can support monitoring distance between customers. It allows business owners and government agencies to see how far apart individuals are without compromising their privacy and using video recording devices.
Although this is not directly related to pandemic building re-entry, advanced devices like those that rely on small-movement measurement can help identify falls by detecting how fast or slow an individual reaches the ground. Similar sensors can also check vital signs emitted by the objects and trigger an action like alarming the health care facility’s nurse call system.
A standard advantage of most detectors is their capability to minimize energy waste. While some areas of reopening establishments may add more costs to the building operations, these devices can be used to save money on energy. While occupancy counting sensors can do more to help the reopening of business during these stressful times, these opportunities can only be materialized if there are plans to monitor the data that the sensor transmits.
People may have suggested an overall building control retrofit to realize the value of these devices at a different time. But because of the COVID-19 pandemic, companies are finding ways to install medium-capacity controllers to integrate with lightweight analytics to offer cost-effective monitoring solutions to startup businesses, as well as small- to medium-sized establishments.
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These devices can be a big help for both government agencies who monitor the spread of the virus, as well as business owners who just want to reopen their business and earn income in the middle of the pandemic while minimizing the risk of spreading the virus to their community.