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Our overall purpose in writing this series of articles is to provide Federal energy managers some basic informational tools to assist their decision making process relative to energy management systems design, specification, procurement, and energy savings potential. Since Federal buildings rely on energy management systems more than their commercial counterparts (see ), it is important for energy practitioners to have a high level of knowledge and understanding of these complex systems.
This is the second article in a series and will focus on building control system (BCS) networking fundamentals and an assessment of current approaches to open communications protocols. This is important because networking is a complex subject and the networks form the basic infrastructure for energy management functions and for integrating a wide variety of OEM equipment into a complete EMCIS. The first article  covered enabling technologies for emerging energy management systems. Future topics will concentrate on more practical aspects including applications software, product offerings, networking strategies, and case studies of actual installations. Please refer to the first article for a more complete overview of the purpose and background for this series.