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Networked Systems for Greater Living Comfort

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The networking of building technology systems is necessary for meeting the growing demands for living comfort, security and flexibility and at the same time, fulfilling the requirements for greater energy efficiency. Anurag Kumar, National Head Albrecht Jung Gmbh & Co. KG briefs on how the company is taking all these requirements into account with intelligent and open KNX solutions & products.

The motivating factors for intelligent house automation are – energy saving, regulation of air quality, temprature & lighting, burglary or theft alert and remote control of any equipment with intuitive and simple operation. There is also a growing requirement to incorporate even proprietary systems within this consistent operation system. The integration of additional functions within the building system technology can be achieved through the development of appropriately new components with KNX connections. Enhanced networking with IP-based systems is also a relevant aspect that is being developed.

The intelligent building system technology includes the networking of components over an installation bus. This also enables cross-trade links within the building. KNX is the only bus system that meets the demands of the European (EN50090) and international (ISO/IEC 14543) norms for home automation.

Facility Pilot Server – REG control centre for the network

Facility Pilot display and management system, currently available in its FAP 3.2 release version can be deployed purely for its display functions, but it can also take on operation and networking tasks, act as a gateway between KNX systems or be deployed as the link to proprietary systems. This is also available for mobile devices (such as smartphones or tablets) through the integrated HTML5 visualisation server.

There are various different deployment scenarios for the visual display tasks. A customer-specific monitor (even a touch monitor) can be hooked up to the integrated DVI outlet, access can be made to the server process model through the network of visual display clients (each of them with their own user interface) or access can also be made by clients to the HTML5 visual display server (the JUNG GUI).

In the illustrated configuration, the visual display through the monitor is supplemented with visual display clients and mobile devices. On the stationary visual display (the monitor connection or client PCs) the user interface graphics can be drawn up in virtually any way to accommodate the demands of the project and customers’ wishes. There is also a total flexibility in the configuration. A complex user interface (created with the Visualisation Editor) for the central control station of a commercial building or property can run on a monitor, while a pre-determined group of people (such as technical personnel) using mobile devices can have access only to selected functions.

If the user consistently uses the Jung GUI for all devices, they can set up the visual display quickly and easily by using Facility Pilot Navigator tool. The Facility Pilot editing tools will enable the basic visual display to be personalised to meet the relevant requirements of the building.

Smart Control IP – the universal room control device

KNX Smart Control is a compact room control device that operates by touch, integrated in the Jung LS 990 switch design based purely on the KNX protocol (which can be programmed with ETS). The Smart Control IP enables various communication and building control systems to be combined and operated within a single design unit. It is integrated into the data network and communicates exclusively through the integrated IP module. With its touch screen, it connects the visual display and control of room functions with the user-friendliness of a smartphone.

The building control systems can be regulated through two HTML5 clients. That way the integration within the KNX control systems takes place by connecting the system to the Facility Pilot Server. In this combination, the Smart Control IP becomes a KNX room controller that allows display and control of the lighting, blinds/shutters, temperature and scenes.

Various applications are conceivable here (such as the display/control of smart metering applications, information from photovoltaic equipment, information from household appliances, IP camera pictures etc.) A weather page can also be set up on the Smart control IP through an additional web client. The user thus always has access to the latest weather data and the local weather forecasts.

The Smart Control IP also acts an internal video station for a Jung door communication system. The display and operation (of camera pictures, call acceptance, door openers etc.) is enabled through the integrated SIP Client. Thereby both conventional indoor stations and the Smart Control IP can be deployed in parallel in a single installation. As gateways to the Jung door communication in the IP environment and consequently to the Smart Control IP, the SIP Gateway is available for audio and control signals and the videostreamer is there for video signals.

All settings of the Smart Control IP are especially quick and easy to compose through a web configuration by means of browser access to the device from a computer or laptop.

KNX Multiroom AMP – brings music all through the house

KNX Multiroom AMP provides audio controls through direct access from the KNX. This offers convenient solution for audio routing with the KNX Multiroom AMP as a central audio station for the entire house. The amplifier with a direct KNX connection has four NF inputs (Cinch) for playback devices such as hi-fi systems, MP3 and DVD players and computers and routes the stereo sound to four or eight loudspeaker outputs as required. Only an appropriate loudspeaker wiring is required for an existing KNX system. The device is supplied as a 19“plug-in unit.

The minimum configuration of such a KNX audio system only requires the KNX sensors necessary for control purposes, KNX system components (such as electricity supply) and the Multiroom AMP.

Flexibility is in demand

Electrical layout planners, fitters and systems integrators are often confronted with the task of working out a multi-room audio system, where the client has not yet even decided which components and makes will be deployed for the audio player, receiver and loudspeaker system at a later date. At the planning stage, which is often during the utilities installation, a decision needs to be made regarding the audio distribution system. In this case the system development using the Jung KNX Multiroom AMP is the ideal solution. The users can then decide for themselves which audio sources will be deployed. The selection of the loudspeakers can also be made to meet customers’ design and quality requirements and can be individually adjusted for any installation situation.

Simple programming and starting up

Consistent operation exclusively through KNX data points considerably simplifies the setting of parameters and startup procedures for fitters and system integrators. Integration into an IP network is not necessary.

There is also an option for manual operation through the membrane keyboard integrated in the front screen of the device. This can be used to check the correct installation of the system already before the programming is done. This results in a variety of options for deployment: from single-family houses and flats to commercial properties such as medical practices, catering establishments, shops, exhibition spaces etc.

The programming of the Multiroom AMP is carried out with the ETS KNX programming and startup tool. In the process, the communication devices for the zone operation are based on the familiar KNX dimmer programming. There are functions such as Mastermute and the ON/OFF amplifier board for central control of the device. The latter function allows the device to be conveniently set in the energy-saving standby mode. This energy saving function can easily be incorporated in the home-leaving scenario of a building control system.

The sky’s the limit

If customers require additional control options for operating the system – through mobile devices for example – then the Facility Pilot Server takes over this task.

The user interfaces for mobile devices can be created with elements of Jung Graphic User Interface (GUI) in accordance with specific user requirements and wishes.

All the functions of the KNX system and the additional systems linked to the Facility Pilot Server are then controlled using uniform operation principles. If the audio sources deployed make their information available in usable formats (with an interface to the Facility Pilot, for example), then they can be shown on the visual display on mobile devices or a Jung room controller.

 

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