Building Automation

Integrated security, access control, and domotica 

Typical disparate systems

Most buildings get equiped with a number of separate systems, that have a specific and limited function. 

  • security (burglar alarm, cameras)
  • access control (key cards)
  • HVAC control (Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning)
  • lighting
  • audio

The systems are either not integrated limiting the possibilities, or integration is limited or complex. You have to manage each system separately. Automatic or remotely controlling these systems is often not possible, or requires you to install a separate client application for each function.

Many vendors now offer island solutions, with an App for your smartphone or tablet. One example is Nest. However, this is only a more intelligent central thermostat, so it does not allow you to control individual rooms, and it does not communicate with any other functions, like electronic controled sun shades.

The integrated solution

A central system that combines all these functions costs less and does more, more efficiently

Example

  • during the day motion sensors, door sensors, and cameras switch on lights where needed, and indicate presence per room or notify employees when a customer enters the front door.
  • at the end of the day, the last person leaving presses a button. LEDs on the button indicate that there is nobody left in the building, and that all windows and doors are closed.  When pressing the button, all lights go out, music is stopped, heating or air conditioning is switched off, doors are locked and the burglar alarm is armed.
  • during the night there is a burglar alarm:
    • a sequence of actions execute to scare the burglar away: an internal sound beeps, lights go on in an order to simulate presence, the door bell rings, a phone rings
    • cameras start video and audio recording to collect evidence
    • alarm notifications are sent via sms, via email including pictures, and to an app on your phone. A VoIP video call is made from a camera to your phone allowing you to immediately view, listen and speak in the room. 
    • The app on your phone shows the history and current status for anything connected in your building. You can assess whether it is a false alarm (e.g. only 1 sensor triggered, only once) or see where the burglar is right now, following the track of triggered motion sensors.
    • You can acknowledge the alarm on you phone, preventing the sirene to go off, or other people getting called. 
  • in the morning, the first employee arriving at the building swipes his badge at the front door. The alarm system is disarmed, doors unlock, lights and music switch on. The heating was started earlier, just in time to have the desired temperature by the time your office normally opens.

We have selected Loxone as the central brain for all these functions. The main reasons are:

  • it automatically gives you full visualisation and control on iPhone, iPad, Android and in any web browser, for any function
  • it has a KNX bus interface to integrate with the standard
  • it is flexible to extend and integrate with other protocols via the available extensions and gateways
  • it is easy to make changes
  • it is reliabale
  • it is less expensive than competing systems e.g. Gira Home Server or Facility Server
Other components that we use in combination with Loxone are:
  • KNX buttons, sensors, actuators, displays, to extend the system with a large range of devices
  • RFID readers and electric doorlocks
  • Intercoms, IP cameras, VoIP video phone systems and VoIP phones that can send and receive IP commands for integration
  • audio and video systems that allow control via IP