KNX RF enables intelligent building technology in the historical Castle Biljoen
Even castle ghosts would enjoy this project: At the last refurbishment in 2015 the Castle Biljoen from the 16th century was equipped with an electrical installation based on KNX. Over the centuries the moated castle with its four dominant corner towers has had a lot of owners and inhabitants. At present it is managed and let by the foundation “Friends of Gelderland Landscape and Castles” (“Het Geldersch Landschap & Kasteelen”).
Living like a king has its challenges. Thus the technical equipment needs to be adequate for an up-to-date, modern building and provide comfort, safety and energy efficiency. Yet, the integration of the relevant functions in the historical, listed masonry is problematic. The ideal solution was the KNX bus system, which allowed the implementation of the required functions with wireless RF components in combination with TP devices. The system integrator Hevac Controls, Eindhoven, The Netherlands, received the KNX Award International Europe for the real artistry to equip the historical ambiance with modern technology while avoiding the destruction of walls and ceilings.
Intelligent Porcelain Switches
415 KNX RF devices out of 555 overall installed bus devices show the complexity of the wireless solution in this project. Due to the products of Hager/Berker the room automation could easily be solved with decentralised sensors, actuators, binary inputs in combination with RF/TP media couplers. Behind stylish porcelain switches are hidden intelligent RF binary inputs which – by means of their radio signals – can trigger simple switching actions or even complete light scenes. For an energy saving room heating the existing radiators have been equipped with KNX drives. Arcus EDS room temperature controller provides them with the set points. Humidity and CO2 sensors control the air quality. The use of tablets and smartphones for mobile control and operation shows how harmoniously classical and baroque interior can be combined with information technology. As soon as the iPad is put in the magnetic holder the visualisation “HC Living”, an in-house development of “Hevac Controls”, allows the rapid checking of status functions and shows the current trends of temperature profiles, air quality, current consumption etc.
Smartphone and Tablet are Guardians
Last but not least KNX replaces the guardians of the castle guards: IP camera systems monitor the grounds. Their video sequences and alarm messages are visualized via “HC Living”. The control system for secured access in combination with smartphone or tablet allows controlling the access road and the gate drives. Finally, the graphic user interface of HC living can control the functions of the whirlpool, display the images of video cameras hidden behind paintings and installed in the pool area of the annexe and visualise sensor values like e. g. water detectors for preventing water damages. Even princely porcelain is transported from the kitchen to the dining hall with a lift controlled by KNX.
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