Healthy Home Evolution
We spend 90 percent of our time indoors – in our offices and our homes. Unfortunately, those environments are not always the healthiest places to hang out. Indoor air quality can be two to five times worse than outdoor air quality, drinking water is often compromised by the quality of the pipes it flows through, and don’t even ask about the effects that all of those new LED bulbs are having on sleep patterns.
Enter Delos, the pioneer of “wellness real estate” and the founder of the WELL Building Standard and the Darwin Home Wellness Intelligence platform. Darwin is designed to enhance health outcomes in the home and mitigate harmful indoor environmental concerns, by utilizing proprietary wellness algorithms and sensor technologies to create spaces that help reduce stress, improve sleep quality, increase performance, and enhance overall well-being.
Through extensive scientific research and real-world testing, Delos discovered that it could mitigate environmental triggers within the home to enhance both physical and emotional well-being. Delos’ Darwin platform incorporates health and wellness features and technologies into the home to bring the benefits of natural outdoor conditions inside.
“We’re doing for people what LEED did for the environment,” explained Anthony Antolino, chief commercial officer for Delos. “The WELL Building Standard is now contracted across 1,000 buildings, in 34 countries, affecting about a million and a half people. That is a profound validation that this is a massive movement that is profound to the built environment and all the constituents that make up that value chain.”
Backed by more than seven years of research, the Darwin Home Wellness Intelligence platform focuses on four main components: air filtration, water purification, circadian lighting, and comfort-focused technologies, all of which simulate natural outdoor conditions. Powered by Delos’ proprietary cloud-based algorithms, the platform interacts with an ecosystem of Delos-approved products and solutions. Darwin is designed to be flexible and accessible, launching across all segments of the housing market, from mass market to luxury.
Building upon its success in the commercial sector, the launch of the Darwin Home Wellness Intelligence platform marks the first expansion of Delos’ offerings to the residential smart-home market. Delos is partnering with premier dealers, installers, builders, and other stakeholders across the globe to integrate the Darwin Home Wellness Intelligence platform into residences.
Simonds, a volume home builder in Australia, has begun including Darwin as part of its base package in all new homes in the state of Victoria. Darwin training is also being provided to the HTSA buying group, and it will be featured as the wellness technology platform in KB’s “Home of the Future” at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Also, as part of a broad national roll out in luxury housing, several luxury single family homes in Beverly Hills, CA, will incorporate the home wellness platform, making them the first luxury residences to be powered by Darwin.
“As a company, we believe that health and well-being is a right, not a privilege,” Antolino pointed out. “So, while we’re [collaborating] with HTSA and the luxury end of the market, Delos believes that from an entry-level price point to the luxury end of the market, we’re bringing forward the ability to improve your health and well-being across all socio-economic classes.”
Delos has formed research collaborations with the Cleveland Clinic, Mayo Clinic, a board of doctors from the Columbia University Medical Center and architects, scientists, and wellness thought leaders to introduce wellness standards, programs, and solutions into the built environment. In collaboration with Mayo Clinic, Delos established the Well Living Lab – the world’s first lab committed to researching the real-world impacts of the indoor environment on human health and performance.
“It’s a really big deal to have a system that’s a combination of algorithms/software and hardware incorporated into the home that passively provide an environment that can improve the health outcome of you and your family,” Antolino said.
The system’s dashboard provides status reports on the building environment, including records of corrections that have been made to the air, water, or lighting quality. Antolino provided a real-world example of how Darwin could react to maintain a healthy environment within a building.
“Let’s say you’re in a building in Los Angeles, and there’s construction going on outside – you have a bunch of bulldozers, trucks, and diesel fumes coming into the window,” he explained. “Someone opens the window, and the air contamination threshold spikes. The air filtration system is going to kick on but will not impact thermal comfort. As the levels back under the right threshold, it will turn itself off.”
Similarly, water filtration can occur at either point-of-use or whole home, depending on the desired intent. In the luxury market, Delos will take water samples from that specific address, have them tested to understand exactly what is happening with the water at the source of the home, and make sure the filtration and remediation is addressing the specific concerns at that location. At the mid- and high-volume-level market, it’s cost prohibitive to do that type of testing, so Delos will use regional water quality data to make water filtration recommendations and the products it’s using will remediate those specific water-quality thresholds.
On the circadian lighting side, Lutron-owned Ketra is already a Delos recommended brand, but there are other companies in the category coming on board, after the first of the year.
On the automation side, a Crestron API pulls the Darwin wellness dashboard functionality into that manufacturer’s app, or for those without a control system, it can be managed from the Darwin app on a smartphone or tablet.
AV integrators will likely see the most opportunity on the lighting side, with plumbers handling water filtration, and HVAC professionals tackling air filtration. Yet Delos is looking for the AV industry to serve as the “tip of the spear,” according to Antolino, to have full knowledge of managing expectations across the other trades.
“It’s about awareness,” Antolino said. “Get in early and bring differentiation and bring value. At the value proposition level, health is the number-one most personal and intimate element of human beings. It’s above money. If you don’t have your health, you have nothing.”