Overview of integrations with external systems

Modified on Tue, 26 Sep 2023 at 08:35 AM

Integrations with external systems

The smartengine installation may be extended to integrate with other systems in your building to provide a complete building solution. The smartengine provides lighting infrastructure and invaluable sensor data that make the entire installation more intelligent. The following are some examples of such interactions:

  • Activating/Deactivating preset configurations in conference rooms from third party control systems, or mobile applications.
  • Using mobile application to adjust the lights in a space.
  • Using occupancy information to dynamically update conference room bookings.
  • Using temperature data to inform HVAC systems for cooling in rooms.

integration image

The smartengine installation may receive information from external systems or send information to external systems as well. The different communication methods allowed support the following:

  • BACnet protocols may be used to interface with other building management systems using the BACnet framework.
  • HTTPs based APIs can be used for direct communication between the devices.
  • MQTT based APIs can be used with a MQTT broker infrastructure.

Note

The smartdirector appliance is required for any of the integration methods discussed above.

Integration Capabilities

Various APIs enable multiple capabilities including the following:

  1. Get the sensor data from the system. This includes motion, temperature, power data on a per sensor (fixture) level or aggregated for each location.
  2. Activate or deactivate scenes configured in individual locations.
  3. Activate or deactivate manual events.
  4. Adjust light levels (brightness) for individual light fixtures.
  5. Adjust the light levels in a location by setting brightness for the location (like dimming).

In addition, beacon controls are available through API to work with BLE capable sensors. These can be used to set up the sensors to advertise their identity, or to detect the information from specific beacons being advertised.

Data Model

The different API forms use the same basic data model. The syntax and operations available with the different interfaces are specific to the interface, but the data model has the same attributes for each interface.

The data model definition references the following primitive types:

  • String : Double-quoted ASCII string, for example, "Hello" and "A slightly longer example." If an element requires an exact ASCII string, it is included in the element’s description.
  • Number : Integer or real value. Numbers are not quoted. Examples include 123, 4.5, and –6.78. Supported precisions, ranges, and dimensions are included in the element’s description.
  • Boolean : Only supported values are true and false, without quotes.

The smartengine data model consists of root container object that includes the following key elements (and others). The exact details of these attributes can be found in the reference guides

Location
  • id - key attribute for a location. In an array of locations, each location has a unique ID as an unsigned integer. Examples are 1, 234, and 56789
  • name - name for the location
  • child location - array of ids for the locations that are children of this location in location hierarchy
  • child fixture - array of fixture serial number strings that identify the fixtures contained in the location
  • sensor statistics - sensor data attributes that aggregate the sensor data across all the child locations and child fixtures in the location. This includes motion, power, temperature data.
  • trigger -  array of configured on demand or unscheduled events.
  • scene control - List of available scenes in the location and controls to activate them
  • dimming controls - To adjust the brightness and color settings for the location
Fixture
  • serialNum - unique string identifying the fixture
  • name - configured name for the fixture
  • type - type of the fixture, e.g. luminaire, fixtureless (sensor only), wall switch etc.
  • sensor statistics - fixture specific sensor data including motion, power,  temperature, brightness

Advanced Features

In addition to standard integration capabilities discussed above there are some features that enable advanced capabilities for integration. These capabilities are not available in all the three interfaces currently.

Beacons

If your installation uses BLE capable sensors, then they may be configured to advertise (transmit) information or capture (receive) information from other BLE capable devices. BLE transmit and receive APIs can be used by other applications to build custom solutions that take advantage of the communication between the smartsensors and other BLE devices in the installation.

API Support

The BLE APIs are available through HTTPs and MQTT APIs only. The BACnet interface does not provide any capabilities for accessing this information.

Virtual Fixtures

Virtual Fixtures provide a method for third party lights and sensors to work with the smartdirector more closely like the smartengine endpoints. During system commissioning, the virtual fixtures are configured in the system as entities with certain capabilities (lighting, partition sensor, etc.) and represent the external entity. The smartengine system interfaces with these entities internally just as it works with the other smartengine endpoints. The APIs are used to affect the actual third party system.

API Support

The Virtual Fixture API is available through HTTPs APIs only. The BACnet and MQTT interface does not currently provide support for this capability.

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