Z-wave sockets and appliances - question.

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by alphacat, Aug 9, 2009.

  1. alphacat

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jun 6, 2009
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    Hello,

    I read about energy-saving products which use Z-wave technology to control power sockets and appliances such as air-conditioners, PCs, home cinema systems, etc.

    I wanted to ask please, do such sockets and appliances contain inside relays and dimmers which are controlled by Z-wave commands?
    If so, is it common nowadays?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Papabravo

    Expert

    Feb 24, 2006
    10,154
    1,795
    I going to go out on a limb here and say that I think the chances that a proprietary system will achieve wide acceptance is vanishingly small. Many have tried -- few have succeded. Even the legendary AB has drunk the open systems Kool-Aid.
     
  3. alphacat

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jun 6, 2009
    186
    0
    Hey,
    thanks for the info.

    I just want to know how it works, not its chances for success :)

    How are power sockets and appliances (like those i mentioned above) controlled by Z-wave commands?
     
  4. n9352527

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 14, 2005
    1,198
    4
    Most probably by using TRIAC, especially for dimmers. Other on-off switches might use relays or solid state relays.
     
  5. alphacat

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jun 6, 2009
    186
    0
    Thank you very much n.

    I have 2 questions please regarding that:
    1. Is there a chip installed in these products which has wireless communication capability, and it is the IC which controls the TRIAC and relays?

    2. I read in Wiki that "One of the benefits of Z-Wave over power line communication technologies is the ability to function in older houses lacking a neutral wire".
    What does it mean to communicate over the power line?

    Thank you very much again.
     
  6. n9352527

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 14, 2005
    1,198
    4
    There is an IC on that thing. I'm guessing it would be similar/close to the Zigbee chip. They might even use the Zigbee chip, and developed their own proprietary protocol instead.

    There are other standards for building automation, such as X10, which uses the power line as communication medium. The data is modulated on the power line. You can search for it and have a read.

    Is there such thing?
     
  7. alphacat

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jun 6, 2009
    186
    0
    Thank you very much for your help n.
    I'll read about this over power line communication.
    Thanks alot.
     
  8. Papabravo

    Expert

    Feb 24, 2006
    10,154
    1,795
    My point was that you don't get to know or understand the details of a proprietary system. At least not to the point where you could roll your own devices. Asking the manufacturers for documentations is like "talking to the hand" as my teenaged daughters used to say.

    Now if you want to spend a considerable fraction of a megabuck for the equipment you might have a shot at reverse engineering it.

    In short don't waste your time on a deadend idea.
     
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