Smart Home Cosenza

Integrator Sirinfo Turns to RTI Control System for Complete Villa Management

Overview

This Case Study is Complements of Sistemi Integrati - Audio/Video magazine -
Appeared in Volume 2 - 2015

The idea of the future house, in the popular imagination, often evokes thoughts related to technology and possible interactions between all the systems in a facility with a modern and refined design. The owner of this residence decided to take a leap into the future. This is an example of top level integration of systems, a model of rare workmanship applied throughout a home. "This is not traditional home automation, but an advanced system for supervision and control, designed for complete villa management" - confirms the Engineer Maurizio Meringolo of Sirinfo, the company that designed the facilities of the house. A residence of 600 square meters, distributed on three levels, plus outdoor area with garden, gazebo, pool and a large patio.

RTI Products Used:

XP-8 Control Processor
T2x Remote Control
T2i Remote Control
T3-V+ Remote Control
U2 Water Resistant Remote Control
SURFiR Companion Remote Control
RTiPanel App - for Apple iPad and iPhone

RTI Case studies available in PDF format

This Case Study is Complements of Sistemi Integrati - Audio/Video magazine -
Appeared in Volume 2 - 2015 - English Translation

Over 15 systems operated by only one remote

Discovering
a real model of integration of systems within the home. From audio to video, air conditioning to security, from photovoltaic to solar thermal, etc. All managed by the RTI system.

The idea of the future house, in the popular imagination, often evokes thoughts related to technology and possible interactions between all the systems in a housing structure, possibly a modern and refined design. And a leap into the future was the decision of the owner of the residence that we went to visit and that will describe through the pages of this article. For Sistemi Integrati readers, attentive to the dynamics of the world system Audio, Video and Control, this case history is an example of the top level of integration of systems, a rare example of such workmanship especially since it is applied to a private dwelling. "This is not a traditional home automation system, but a veritable advanced supervision and control system, designed for the complete management of a villa - confirms the Engineer Maurizio Meringolo of Sirinfo, a company that took care of the entire plant design of the house. A residence of 600 square meters, distributed on three levels, plus an outdoor area with garden, gazebo, swimming pool and large paved area adjacent ".

Integration of a wide range of facilities

We are in Calabria, and more precisely in Cosenza, in a plateau that sees the city at its feet and from which you can see the Sila National Park. The building has three floors so conceived, starting from the bottom: a basement consists of a fitness room, indoor pool, technical room, basement and garage; day plan, with extended living room, large kitchen, study room and movie theater; night floor, at the highest level, with bedrooms, bathrooms, closets and utility rooms. The discovery of this structure, we asked our guide Marco Costanzo and Maurizio Meringolo, respectively Technical Leader and Systems Integration Engineer Sirinfo, two professionals who developed the project through the integration of more than 15 systems
 
"Before starting the design of the supervision system," continues the Engineer Meringolo - "we have established some requirements to be met. Taking into account all the typical aspects of daily life, we paid much attention to the actual fusion of high technology and man, in order to achieve maximum comfort and at the same time bring out the soul of every environment. Everything, thought to return only an emotional experience for each family member. For this system, therefore, we have taken account of the following characteristics:
- Ease of use: to establish a user-friendly and confidential relationship between users and the system
- Continuity of operation and reliability
- Expandability and opening to adapt any new requirements and future changes
- Total Systems Integration: understood as possible communication between the various elements involved, can be managed from a single point of control."
 
The main systems to be managed inside the residence, all controlled from a single remote RTI (or wall panel) and each individually manageable in a few moves, via a touch or a mouse click:
- Audio & Video
- Intrusion
- Air conditioning
- Access control
- Controlling electricity consumption
- Photovoltaic
- Indoor and outdoor lighting
- Irrigation
- Engines
- Inside pool
- Outside pool
- Floor heating
- Solar Thermal
- Video Entry
- Video surveillance

Total control, single point of management
"While respecting these requirements, it was chosen to push hard the whole system design," explains Marco Costanzo - "choosing between leading companies and focusing on the use of open protocols to facilitate as much as possible the 'integration. Not only that, for our part, along with the entourage of Sirinfo, we have developed appropriate software to exploit the potential of each brand and gain total control of the villa plants even from a single point of management, how could it be an iPad or an advanced remote control."  It remains almost as difficult to imagine that each individual system, of the more than fifteen designed and integrated into a complex and articulated project, can be operated comfortably with the aid of a single remote control; as it is difficult to suggest that these devices are simple and intuitive to use.

Remote control choice for the management of the house
For easy and comfortable management of the plants, the Sirinfo designers chose the use of RTI systems and devices, brand distributed in Italy by Comm-Tec Italy. The same Maurizio Bellisi from Residential & Digital Signage Channel Management of Comm-Tec Italy, has provided technical support during the development of the design. Marco Costanzo confides: "In addition to the use of the iPad as wall mounted control panels running the RTIPanel App and customized applications according to customer needs, we decided to concentrate everything on the most commonly used device in the house: the remote control. RTI devices, which in addition to video and audio management system, integrate the complete control of the environment of a home. Naturally, the programming of the control systems has been conceived taking into consideration all possible users, including guests and service personnel."
 
Single user interface
Altogether there were 5 RTIPanel Apps, 4 installed on iPad and one on smartphones, while 5 RTI remote controls distributed in different rooms of the residence. All devices have a unique user interface, perfectly synchronized to the apparatus designed by the system integrator. Therefore, each action produced by a only one of the devices immediately is aligned to all other in real time. In this way, in addition to making uniform the commands of the various apparatuses, the control presents a redundancy such that, if it breaks one of these devices, the total management is always guaranteed by the other. All devices are easily programmed as needed: "Touching a button of a remote control or of the panel invokes a function in programming" - adds Maurizio Meringolo. "Therefore, a button can associate different functions depending on my needs. Similarly, a whole series of scenarios were programmed that can easily be recalled by selecting a single command on one of the control devices."

Keypads in the home
Even if in a limited extent, in addition to the RTI touchscreen devices and remote controls, the house still offers keypads for the management of the installations in with traditional buttons. They were provided to manage the systems without always depending on mobile devices, as well as to favor the personnel not accustomed to the use of the device.

Three main facilities
The three facilities communicate with each other by means of software drivers that enable the integration and dialogue:
- RTI Driver for My Home bticino, developed by the same Sirinfo, which allows the integration of RTI control devices and My Home bticino, favoring the supervision and management of the main functions of a lighting system, air conditioning, engines, events and scenarios. The driver, in Italy, is distributed by Comm-tec from Italy and Domo Innovation, home automation division Sirinfo
- RTI Driver for Vantage, which enables integration between the two systems, RTI and Vantage
- Vantage Driver for My Home, which allows to manage a My Home system from Vantage user interfaces.

Dialogue between facilities and control systems
Relations between the different systems and the control systems require continuous supervision and fitting. The same system integrator was responsible for coordinating the components of the various systems, as well as planning its management and control to ensure that the dialogue between the parties remains always efficient. "The supervisory and control system has been built according to a distributed intelligence logic," explains Maurizio Meringolo. "And consists of a series of autonomous and independent devices. In this way, each system element fulfills its function and in case of its failure are inhibited only the functions assigned to him. In addition, the modules are able to maintain their basic functions (eg stepper relay function, relay for managing motorized blinds, etc.) Although the system bus stops. Not only that, the logic of the system, in addition to being distributed, is also redundant; more devices are able to perform the same function to ensure maximum flexibility and reliability in case of failures. Redundancy is not intended as physical redundancy but as logical redundancy, so the functions performed by a 'critical' component of the system can also be provided by another component due to the development of integration software."

The audio video distribution
The Audio Video Distribution is handled through two matrices: an Atlona 8x8 with HDBaseT technology for video and Russound 8x8 with its amplifier for audio. All sources (Sky box, digital cable box, bluray player, etc.) Are centralized in the technical room, therefore each of the 11 TV present in the villa has as its only link a Cat 6 cable that, through a receiver HDBaseT, conveys the signal HDMI from the source. Some multimedia content, such as photos, videos, digital music, etc., are stored on the NAS to be usable by all the inhabitants of the villa in any environment.
The integration with the rest of the system allows you to have complete audio video control via a single RTI remote, from which control of the different sources, the TV, the audio distribution and, thanks to a touchscreen LCD display, also all the rest of the environment (curtains, drapes, climate, lights, etc).

The cinema room
For a futuristic house like this, he could not miss the cinema room, completely soundproofed with acoustic cladding, both for the walls and the ceiling. The room is designed with a 5.1 surround sound system and a 116" screen, chosen to return fidelity audio from the front speakers installed behind the video terminal. To complete this system, a video projector with 4K and 3D technology, associated with a receiver, a bluray player and a media player 4K. In the cinema room, like a normal TV, it is intended to distribute all satellite and terrestrial TV signals. Even in this case, the management of the cinema room occurs through only one remote RTI evolved that manages source, projector, lights, climate, scenarios, etc. In this case, the remote control has been set for the cinema room control but, as with other RTI remote controls in your home, you can also set this model for the management of the facilities of the whole house.

Photovoltaic and solar thermal
The entire house has been designed according to the dictates took the Class A certification and presents a constantly active energy balance. Two photovoltaic systems are involved, for a total of 20Kw, thermal solar panels for hot water management. Observing the values that display on the wall panel, the Ing. Marco Costanzo describes the interface on the energy production: "As with other systems, we have also integrated the management of photovoltaic and solar thermal, and via a dedicated interface we can see in real time the production and absorption of energy. Based on the values that emerged after a constant monitoring of the system study, we analyzed the domestic needs and combined this data with that of the energy produced. An operation served to create the algorithms useful to better manage the loads of the house and achieve an ideal production delta that reduces to zero the need of power purchase. The purpose of this system," continues Marco Costanzo, "is to concentrate the majority of energy consumption at peak production, reducing it instead at night. Among others, for example, we are able to read in real time the temperatures of the collector and accumulation, and better manage the internal and external pool heating, recirculation of domestic water, the floor heating, etc., Thanks to the information provided continuously from the plant."

Total gas absence
In this house the gas system exists. However the photovoltaic and solar thermal systems guarantee the production of hot water with electric heat pumps and that of induction heat, with ceramic hobs. The production of energy is optimized through the integrated system which according to the algorithm prefers a higher electrical consumption in major PV manufacturing conditions, maximizing the 'net metering' to get energy at no cost.

Lighting system
The villa lighting is controlled with DALI protocol through a Helvar router, integrated into the system and manageable from any control point. In the home traffic areas, such as corridors, they were installed miniaturized sensors that automatically manage the lights based also on ambient light parameters and sunrise and sunset times.

Video surveillance system and video entry
The rooms of the house, inside and outside, as well as the entire perimeter that encloses the property, are monitored by a video surveillance system with 16 cameras. Installed along the perimeter cameras are high resolution, with video analysis module board that allows to discriminate within the video surveillance the presence of people, animals, vehicles, as well as to trace the path and activate the alarm upon the occurrence of certain conditions set during installation. It has been provided, in addition, a license plate recognition module through a camera located in correspondence of the driveway gate. In this case, the system is able to recognize the license plate that comes close and open the gate if the license plate is recognized as authorized.
The video door entry system uses IP PoE devices, especially a videophone at the entrance, with a full HD camera, a digital keyboard module and a proximity reader to gain access to housing through numerical code or badge. In addition to VoIP SIP terminal from a dwelling, the video door entry system is integrated and well managed by all touchscreen terminals, with the ability to manage everything even remotely.

Server storage for programming and remote management
A virtual server, reserved for the technical personnel, allows the programming of the system and its monitoring, and the construction of graphical management interfaces and the use of various software; also it is used to store the substantial technical documentation on the implant kit.
A second virtual server is used to store real-time images of the video surveillance system, consisting of Full HD IP cameras, night & day, installed at the entrance point. The remote access security system is ensured by a firewall that allows secure, encrypted connection.

Conclusion
At the end of this discovery of a real smart home, we summarize the concept of the modern house, bringing a singular view of the engineer Maurizio Meringolo: "Two thousand years ago the philosopher Pliny the Elder said that" Home is where the heart is."Surely it is still so, but if you still lived in our day Pliny "new" would agree that the present and the future of a modern house has without doubt, a "digital heart", adequately computerized.

"Taking into account all the typical aspects of daily life, we paid much attention to the actual fusion of high technology and man, in order to achieve maximum comfort and at the same time bring out the soul of every environment. Everything, thought to return an emotional experience for each family member."

- Maurizio Meringolo
Systems Integration Engineer - Sirinfo
Dealer Information:

Sirinfo
via Luigi De Franco, 26 – 87100 Cosenza (CS)
Tel.: +39 0984 483557
Fax: +39 0984 822883
E-mail: info@sirinfo.it

Sirinfo – www.sirinfo.it
Domo Innovation – www.domoinnovation.it
Comm-Tec – www.comm-tec.it

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