New Retrofit Z-Wave Based Smart Home Controller Launched

Merten have just announced their new “CONNECT” system, based on Z-Wave technology.  Aimed squarley at the (huge) retro-fit market, the system is based around the “CONNECT radio centre”. This wall mounted central contoller has a colour LCD screen and user configurable buttons all of which can be programmed from a PC via USB.  Read on for the full press release.

“Merten has expanded its product program with a new radio system. With the CONNECT solution based on the Z-Wave standard for wireless home control the company addresses the rapidly growing renovation market. The radio system from Merten constitutes an important building block towards a low-cost retrofitting of home control solutions for buildings and thus can be broadly applied by electricians and end consumers. By using the Z-Wave standard the radio system is interoperable with solutions from other vendors and, therefore, offers an optimal integration of light control, room climate, multimedia, and security applications, etc. More than 160 enterprises, including industry giants, Cooper Industries, Danfoss, Intel, Intermatic, Leviton, Monster, Universal Electronics (UEI), and Wayne-Dalton are members of the Z-Wave Alliance and have decided in favour of Z-Wave as home control technology. Over 170 Z-Wave based products are already available on the market today.

The renovation market is expected to rapid growth in the next few years. In Germany alone, more than 30 million apartments and houses are 30 years and older with today’s minimum standards concerning electrical installation hardly being met. Most owners and architects are, so far, avoiding a retrofit with modern electrical installation technology because of the high costs. With the modern CONNECT radio system from Merten this is a problem of the past since it enables a low-cost as well as easy retrofit of older buildings without high cost rewiring. In addition, occupants can upgrade their rented flats with the CONNECT radio system also temporily and remove devices when they relocate again.

The CONNECT radio system from Merten

The solution based on the Z-Wave standard is a radio system with bi-directional, acknowledged transmission as well as re-routing and diagnosic tool. It offers a multitude of usage options in the areas of wireless light control, room climate, energy saving, multimedia, and security applications providing for linking of building control functions with multimedia applications. With 868 MHz, the new Merten radio system operates on a frequency specially reserved for short range radio making it extremely robust. The unique addressing enables a trouble-free simultaneous operation of multiple radio systems. The system can be very easily installed and configured and the installations can be extended anytime. In the home, the radio range of the system is about 30 meters depending on assembly position as well as general building condition such as wall thickness. In open air application the radio range is up to 100 meters. Due to the very short execution-time of 50 milliseconds per application, the radio system from Merten only broadcasts when a radio transmitter is activated. This mode of operation is not only very economical but also has benefits in construction-biological terms. Compared to a mobile phone, the radiance emission of the CONNECT radio system is lower by a factor of 1/10.000.

The CONNECT radio centre acts as the central element equipped with a graphical user interface (merten@home). It has eight free programmable operating keys and a 3.5 inch colour display making it the central control element of the radio system. The radio centre additionally offers the following features: 32 predefined scenarios and a clock timer with 20 weeks and 12 years timer switch programs. A Piezo loudspeaker has been integrated for acoustic alert. Some additional features the radio center offers include the display of an email account, presentation of images in the form of a slideshow, and display of breaking news based on RSS news feeds. Network mp3 players or streaming clients can be controlled from the radio centre via the multimedia application. Another feature of the CONNECT radio centre is the automatic sending of messages if predefined events occur. Thus, the CONNECT radio centre, for example, notifies per mail, if the light is applied during absence. In case of comprehensive radio applications, with up to 100 devices, the radio configuration software helps CONNECT. The functions can be easily assigned to all devices via drag and drop using the USB radio interface.”     :

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