Universal light switch in the Smart Home system

Features of the "smart" switch, comparison with traditional

The ability to control lighting in the house provides not only comfort and safety, but also energy savings. To control the lighting in ordinary homes, are used traditional "On / Off" wall switches or "dimmers", that allow to change the brightness of the lighting.
Every electrician knows the simple connection scheme of a traditional key switch with a "neutral" wire connection to control the light source.


А) Wiring diagram of connection of the traditional switch to the junction box for control of the lamp


B) Wiring diagram of connection of the switch with zero wire to the junction box for control of the lamp

As can be seen from the diagram in option A), the "neutral" wire of the power supply from the junction box goes directly to the load (lamp), but the "phase" before reaching the load, opens with a switch. According to option B), the "zero" wire from the junction box goes to both the lamp and the switch. The "load" wire of the network is connected in the same way as in option A).

The Smart Home system from i3 Engineering allows you to use any switches regardless of their cost, principle of operation and design. Now a conventional light switch can control not only the lighting but also other systems.


Types of "smart" switches

Today, many switches are used in Smart Home systems, which are classified as follows. 
● According to the principle of operation: rocker switches (which need to be pressed) and touch (which need to be touched). Rocker switches are divided into: "classic", closing or opening the circuit and pulse - doorbell-type switches without locking.
● By type of installation: built-in (this includes built-in furniture touch switches) and external. The second ones can be backlit or not.
It is worth noting that when building a Smart Home system based on i3 Engineering controllers, the user is unlimited in choosing the model, manufacturer or design of a switch.

Important! To get all the benefits of "smart" switches in the Smart Home system, we recommend the use of touch switches or doorbell-type switches without locking, with a "dry contact" type output.

Transform simple switches into "smart" ones with Atom series controllers

In the development of the Smart Home system, i3 Engineering prefers wired management and data transmission technologies. Traditional light switches are a shining example of wired systems, so i3 Engineering has set out to turn them into "smart" ones.
With Atom series controllers, you can make any switch "smart". By connecting a conventional switch (without locking) to the input of the Atom controller, you can use program logic to assign several algorithms (scenarios) to the system after pressing this switch.
For example, in the i3 Home application, you can configure the functionality of the switch depending on when and how you click on it:
● One click - turn the lights ON or OFF 100% during the day and only 20% at night, for extra comfort;
● Double-click launches Movie Time scene. The lighting in the room goes out smoothly, the TV backlight turns on at the same time, and the motorized curtains close;
● Long hold - a signal to the controller to change the temperature in the room to a comfortable one at this time of day.
Also, with the help of the i3 Home application, any switch can be reconfigured into a master switch: switching off all lighting, groups of non-critical sockets and switching the heating system to ECO mode when leaving the house.

Important! All light switch settings can be easily configured in the i3 Home mobile application. A huge advantage of this approach is that you can change the settings of the switch from the mobile application at any time convenient for the user. This way, the system owner does not need to call service engineers to set up their own home.

Connecting switches to i3 Engineering controllers.

The switches are connected to the Atom series controllers using the controller inputs. This means that the signal from the switch acts as a simple "dry contact" for the controller and is fed to the corresponding input of the controller. However, the appropriate lighting groups and other loads are connected to the outputs of the controller.
Special mention should be made of switches with backlit keys, which have gained popularity due to the ability to easily find them in the dark and original design. However, when connecting such switches to the Atom series controller, keep in mind that the lighting element of the switch requires a certain supply voltage, and therefore the involvement of additional outputs of the controller.


Unlike the traditional rocker switches connection, in this circuit, lighting groups and other equipment does not physically connect to the light switch. The intermediate link is the controller. This allows you to use light switches not only to turn on or change the brightness of the lights, but also to create a variety of scenarios and control the whole house.

Important! The inputs of the 3U and 6U Atom series controllers have the ability to enable / disable the optocoupler mode by changing the position of the corresponding jumpers for each input. When connecting switches to these controllers, it is necessary to set / enable the optocoupler mode using the appropriate jumpers. For 9U series controllers, it is not possible to switch the optocoupler mode on / off, meaning the switches are connected directly to the controller.


Optocoupler mode OFF (IN1-IN3)

Important! Inputs and "shared" outputs are signed. The common terminals are marked with the letter "G" and are connected to the "minus" of the power supply of the controller. All common contacts are interconnected - when connecting switches with a twisted pair cable, it is enough to use only one connection to the "G" terminal.

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