Addenda that reflect the evolving nature of ASHRAE's building controls standard and its companion testing standard were recommended for public review at the Society's 2005 Winter Meeting.

Addendum b to ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 135-2004, BACnet - A Data Communication Protocol for Building Automation and Control Networks, contains new BACnet features related to advanced trend logging capabilities and specialized alarm handling capabilities important in Asian markets.

It was recommended by the Standard 135 committee for a second public review following changes made as a result of comments received in a previous public review. Also recommended for public review was addendum a to ANSI/ASHRAE 135.1-2003, Method of Test for Conformance to BACnet. This addendum defines new tests for features of BACnet that have been added since publication of the testing standard as well as refinements based on experience testing BACnet products.

"These addenda demonstrate the evolving nature of BACnet, with new capabilities being added on an ongoing basis, and the subsequent need for expanding and enhancing the testing," said committee chair Bill Swan.

The committee also reviewed comments received from the public review of BACnet/WS, the BACnet Web services proposal. Responses to some of the comments were approved, and some of the suggestions adopted by the committee.

"We received high-quality comments from experts around the world," Mike Newman, XML Working Group chair, said. "These comments will help us to refine and improve the BACnet Web services capability, which will be used to integrate building automation systems with enterprise applications."

The Utilities Interaction working group made progress toward standardizing the interfaces between energy utilities and buildings, approving two proposals, both with their roots in ASHRAE Research Project 1011-RP, Utility/Energy Management and Controls Systems Communication Protocol Requirements.

One proposal provides a means for an organizational view of the objects in a BACnet device; the other defines a new load control object. Another proposal being discussed by the group makes use of the BACnet/WS Web services proposal by using the Web services as the standardized means by which the utilities would interact with buildings over the Internet.

A highlight of the meeting was an increase in international participation. Attendees came from the United States, Canada, China, Germany, Japan, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. During the meeting it was announced that a BACnet Interest Group - Sweden (BIG-SE) has been formed with several large BACnet projects underway or completed in Sweden and Finland. Plans to form a BACnet Interest Group - Russia (BIG-RU) also were announced. Both groups will sponsor BACnet promotional and educational activities.

Other issues being addressed by the committee include BACnet network security, common data models for CCTV and access control, and BACnet support for lighting control applications.