As more states across the country begin to reopen after the COVID-19 lockdown, companies and employees continue to express their concerns about returning to work. On the one hand the pressure to restart the economy is increasing, while on the other hand there is an evident fear of spreading the virus.
In my last blog post I shared with you examples of how we supported customers in areas where the pandemic hit hardest in building new hospitals in record time. As an essential infrastructure business our highest priority has been keeping our customers’ businesses up and running while helping to address urgent healthcare needs. Yet at the same time we have started to write a new chapter about how to build on current infrastructure to prepare for the next phase of the pandemic. We have worked quickly to build out a suite of infrastructure solutions designed to prepare our customers for the next step: Come Back with Confidence.
Today, I want to share with you a return-to-work concept our teams developed in response to the question: How can we leverage our smart building solutions to increase the protection of building occupants during the ongoing fight of COVID-19? Our main priority here is to create safe and healthy indoor environments that help employees return to work with confidence – from offices to factories, from healthcare facilities to municipal buildings. To do so, we identified the following focus areas to mitigate the risk of spreading the virus:
- Reduce the spread of airborne and surface contaminants
- Improve air quality through new HVAC maintenance strategies and advanced filtration
- Manage energy performance by offsetting new HVAC guidelines with energy efficiency strategies and IoT technology
- Enable physical distancing
- Provide real-time updates to occupants regarding space utilization and emergency notifications
- Sustain healthy and safe environments on-going remote monitoring and on-site service strategies
Here’s a snapshot of just a few of the offerings that will help our customers to come back with confidence in the months to come.
Thermal imaging cameras with Elevated Skin Temperature enable a contactless way of measuring body temperature from six feet away. The highlight from a technology perspective is that these cameras can be integrated into a building’s existing security and access solution systems.
Contact tracing plays an increasing role to track and prevent the further spread of the virus. Who did a person with COVID-19 symptoms come in contact with? The smart sensor technology of our subsidiary Enlighted Inc. provides advanced motion tracking. The sensors can be installed in any light fixture or workstation and collect and monitor real-time occupancy, space utilization, light levels, temperatures and help to control energy usage. The highlight here is that the sensors can distinguish between people and objects.
Ultraviolet (UV) light technology is a highly effective way to kill fungi, bacteria, and viruses in indoor spaces, and thus, reduces the risk of infections. UV lighting systems can be installed on different surfaces, such as ceilings, walls, desks or even mobile configuration and are another asset of our smart buildings solutions.
Over the next few weeks, Siemens subject matter experts will be sharing further insights on how we can help companies create safe and healthy indoor environments to come back with confidence via social media.