Preparing for your installation

Modified on Tue, 26 Sep 2023 at 08:38 AM

Preparing for your installation

Your installation requires careful planning to ensure a smooth installation. There are a number of different aspects that one must consider and prepare for prior to actually setting up the hardware.


The lighting in different spaces directly impact the productivity and health of the occupants. It also impacts the aesthetics of the space and affects where occupants want to spend their time. This has to be balanced with the power consumption of the lighting fixtures. The lighting needs of an office space is different from that of an open space or a corridor.

Considerations for lighting fixtures
  • How much natural sunlight is available and how can it be used?
  • Should the lights be color tunable?
  • What is the minimum light required in spaces when occupied? Are there any regulatory requirements?
  • Which lights must be available when backup power is in use (emergency lighting)?
  • What lights can be controlled by occupants using wall controllers?

Sensor placement

Sensors can collect valuable data that provide insights into the operation of the building. Occupancy sensors can be used to control the lighting in the different spaces, while temperature data may be used to control HVAC systems. For optimal use of these sensors, one must carefully plan the sensor placement, so that they cover the maximum area possible.

smartengines and endpoints

Once the lighting fixtures and sensor placement requirements are determined, we can determine the number of smartengine endpoints that are required for the installation. Depending on the type of the lighting fixture to be connected, each endpoint may require up to three ports on an engine. Each smartengine provides 48 ports of connectivity and power. The number of smartengines required may be determined from the number of ports that must be available to connect to the endpoints. It is desirable to leave some ports open for future growth considerations and flexibility as well.

The number of ports to assign to each fixture varies by fixture. However, a rough estimate is less than 34W per port for smartengine.

Ports required for endpoints
  • Downlights require a single port.
  • 2’ x 2’ fixtures typically require a single port.
  • 4’ pendants typically require a single port.
  • 4’ pendants with up/down lighting require at least 2 ports, depending on wattage.
  • smartdimmers require a single port.
  • smartscenecontroller requires a single port.
  • When using a standard toggle switch, this will be connected to smartsensor GPIO, and does not require a separate port.
  • For any devices that require more than one port, a smartgateway/smartsensorpod pair will need to be designed in.

Downlight sharing

Downlight sharing is a technique that allows for multiple downlights or spotlights to be shared between a sensor and engine port. This can be a cost effective technique but must be engineered correctly and carefully. See figure below for a layout of downlight sharing.

downlight sharing


  • In order to evaluate if multiple low powered fixtures can be driven by a single port, all parameters of the fixture (power, voltage, and current) must be considered. Keep in mind it is not just the wattage!
  • Fixtures with low forward voltage are potential candidates for downlight sharing.
  • If the forward voltage is < 18V and the installation has some configurations where only one fixture is used, then this downlight sharing solution will not work.
  • Check the fixture specification to ensure that current, voltage and wattage is adequate to drive the fixture to get the specified lumen output.

Cabling and rackspace

The smartengines connect to endpoints using standard class 2, low-voltage cabling conforming to structured cabling standards. TIA/EIA -­‐ 568 standards should be followed, and cables must be suitably rated and listed for its intended installation environment (e.g., types CL2 or CM -– P if the cabling is routed through plenums). The smartengine is supplied with 48 x RJ45 ports and the smartsensor or smartgateway also has RJ45 ports. To minimize voltage loss in the cable the maximum length of cable should be under 328ft/100m. cabling

Cabling needs
  • Cable types (Category 5, Category 5E, Category 6)
  • Distances
  • Patch Panels

Rackspace must be configured to accomodate the smartengine systems and their connections.

Rackspace needs
  • smartdirector (1U) (approximately one per 2000 endpoints)
  • smartengines (1.5U per engine)
  • Patch panels (if needed)
  • Cable management (normally 1U-2U per engine)


It is critical to ensure that adequate power is available to operate the smartdirector and smartengines. In addition, redundancy and failover should also be considered for emergency lighting requirements. The following are power circuit requirements for the smartdirector and smartengines.


AC Input for smartdirector
  • Input Voltage: 100-240 VAC, auto-ranging
  • Power Consumption, maximum: 350W (the units ship with dual redundant PSUs)
  • Power Frequency: 50/60 Hz


The smartdirector does not come with power cords, but it does include IEC C14 to C13 whips/jumpers rated for 15A circuits. The inlet connector on the power supplies of the smartdirector are standard IEC 320 C14.


The 200VAC-250 VAC version of the smartengine requires a maximum 12A of current from the branch circuit to which it is connected when operating at full power. At a minimum, a 15A branch circuit is required for this specific smartengine, given the standard 80% de-rating.

AC input for 200VAC-250VAC version
  • 200-220 VAC/12A, 50–60Hz
  • 230-250 VAC/10A, 50–60Hz
  • Max power consumption: 2200W

The 200VAC-250VAC version of the smartengine does not come with a power cord. You can either order one from wtec for your specific region or procure an appropriate one which fits the input connector and meets the power requirements as stated above. For example, in the USA, the typical power cord for that smartengine is NEMA 6-20P to IEC C19 (rated for 20A, 250VAC, 12/3 AWG)

The 277VAC version of the smartengine requires a maximum 8A of current from the branch circuit to which it is connected when operating at full power. At a minimum, a 10A branch circuit is required for this specific smartengine, given the standard 80% de-rating.

AC input for 277VAC version
  • 277VAC/8A, 50–60Hz
  • Max power consumption: 2200W


The 277VAC version of the smartengines comes with a power cord which has a NEMA L7-15P plug attached to it.


Ideally, each smartengine should be on its own dedicated circuit. If two 277VAC smartengines are going to share a 20A circuit, ensure that they are not interleaved.

IP networking

The smartdirector and the smartengines communicate with each other over IP network using standard TCP and UDP protocols. The smartengines and smartsensors communicate with each other using proprietary signaling methods that allows for providing power to the lighting fixtures as well as getting data from the sensors. Therefore, each smartengine and smartdirector requires an IP address (IPv4 or IPv6). Since the communication uses standard IP based protocols, there is no constraint in terms of connecting these devices into a regular network with other devices. Creating separate VLAN and IP subnet to host the engines allows for isolation of smartengine traffic from other IP traffic and is helpful in isolating any impact of other traffic on the smartengines and vice versa. For example, it would be undesirable to have a traffic storm from another malfunctioning device in the network, affect the responsiveness of the lighting to motion events.

The only external services that they access directly are DHCP, DNS, and NTP server. Therefore, for enhanced security it is possible to configure VLAN based IP ACLs that limit the flow of traffic between the smartengine and smartdirector. Further, this communication is restricted to specific set of TCP/UDP ports, and so it is possible to set up access control list to a very fine grain level if desired.

The following table shows the list of TCP/UDP ports that must are required for communication between the smartengines and other systems that it communicates with over IP.

80TCPHTTPInboundOnly required if using HTTP for APIs. Disabled if firewall is enabled
443TCPHTTPSInboundRequired for Smartmanager and API access
68TCPDHCPCOutboundOnly required if using DHCP
123TCPNTPBothRequired for time synchronization between smartengines and smartdirector
47808TCPBACnetBothRequired if BACnet is being used (BACnet may be configured to use a different port).
54321UDPInternal ClusteringBoth
65433TCPInternal ClusteringBoth
Networking requirements
  • Identify IP Subnets to be used
  • IP Address Management (DHCP vs Static IP). If using DHCP ensure that they are reserved for the systems.
  • Identify what external access is required to the systems.
  • Set up routers and network services like NTP, DNS etc.

Emergency Lighting

There are two options for implementing Emergency lighting capabilities with smartengines.

Independent Bugeye solution uses standard AC based solution to the provide the emergency lights in key areas of the facility not controlled by smartengine. In this solution, AC power is supplied to both the bug-eyes and the smartengine. The smartengine controls an in-line dry contact relay via a smartengine Universal Gateway, Outage relay. bugeye

Designated Emergency smartengine option is generally preferred by lighting designers as it is aesthetically elegant. However it requires the use of UL924 listed UPS. The smartengine system can then be configured with emergency lighting zones and their corresponding fixtures. The smartengines participating in the zones detect the power state (primary or backup) based on inputs through Emergency Gateway. emergency lighting


The UL924 certified UPS must be sized to sustain the lighting load (2200 watts/smartengine) for minimum 90 minutes. This is a code requirement and must not be overlooked.

Integration with other systems

The smartengine installation can interface with other building devices and management systems as required. Building Management systems using BACnet can communicate with the smartdirector to retrieve data from the sensor. Similar capability is available through REST APIs or MQTT interface.

Integration Examples
  • Indoor Navigation
  • Room & workstation booking
  • Light fixture dimming - Security integration
  • People & asset tracking
  • Analytics
  • Integration with Heating, Ventilation, Shade Controls


A smartdirector is required for integration with any external system.

Was this article helpful?

That’s Great!

Thank you for your feedback

Sorry! We couldn't be helpful

Thank you for your feedback

Let us know how can we improve this article!

Select atleast one of the reasons
CAPTCHA verification is required.

Feedback sent

We appreciate your effort and will try to fix the article