I’m bumping this because it seems interesting.
I did some additional research into the EMS module provided in EnergyPlus.
It seems that it is a high-level control object, much like the ones we already have access too in Honeybee or Openstudio components (e.g. set point manager, availability manager, demand manager, etc.). The interesting, in my opinion, advantage of the EMS module is that it can span system boundaries effectively integrating different high-level control objects. My intuition is that this can be used to incorporate occupant thermal comfort into energy optimization routines.
A problem might be that coding is required to develop EMS modules, specifically using the EnergyPlus Runtime Language (ERL). It’s functionality is also hindered by the availability of sensor and actuator objects. Sensors are quite easy to develop (as they come from EP outputs). I am currently trying to understand what kind of actuators are available and which have been developed.
Furthermore, the way the EMS module runs it seems to me as an internal optimization or quality-check of the whole simulation. What it does is after each timestep, it goes through the EP reports the variable values, and checks them against actuator values. If required, the timestep is repeated (this might be an issue if we poorly design control strategies).
Anyways, I think I’ve said too much. I’m going over this which seems like a solid reference (http://apps1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/energyplus/pdfs/ems_applicat…). Hoping for some feedbacks on this, even if it’s bad