Perpetuum Smart Home

Tyron Cosway
12th January 2017 IN Case Studies

The “Passivhaus Eisenstraße” project was created by a committed group of craftsmen from the Mostviertel region in Austria and was implemented as a flagship project for the state exhibition. Their goal was to show how sustainable and innovative a home could be. The result is visually and technically extraordinary home featuring Loxone equipment.

Everything under control. That’s all there is to it.

This case study perfectly encompasses the Loxone Standard. The Loxone Partners responsible for this project followed our standards & recommendations and the Loxone Switch Standard for everything from blind control to security.

Saving energy. At the highest level.

This is no ordinary passive house. It needs no external energy sources for heating, and it actually generates more energy than it consumes. This home has an energy rating of 9.2 kWh / m2a – far below the average of 50-65 kWh / m2a of heat for similar new builds.

The home features solar panels on the roof just above the terrace – an ideal spot to harness the sun’s energy. Using Loxone components, thia home’s electricity production is intelligently integrated into the smart home system. With this information, the intelligent management of the home includes ensuring the home is run in the most energy-efficient way at any time of day or night. Certain appliances around the home are controlled with SmartSocket Airs, only activating when a certain amount of energy has been produced. Any excess self-produced energy flows automatically into a solar battery. If devices are not needed or if no one is in the house, the devices and lighting are automatically switched off. Plus, the levels of energy consumption and production in the home can be viewed at any time with the free Loxone Smart Home app.

No Heating Costs

Electricity and hot water doesn’t cost a thing in this home. This is thanks to the ingenious energy management concept featured in the Passivhaus Eisenstraße. Playing an important part of this concept is the Loxone Miniserver which intelligently regulates the temperature throughout the home.

Rather than having different temperatures for each room of the home, this home has the same temperature throughout. Slots under the doors can circulate the warm air from the living room to each of the other rooms. A 1-Wire temperature sensor in each room of the house means the Miniserver can ensure this consistency throughout the home. When designing the passive house, a conscious effort was made to use large glass panels as part of the exterior walls to allow in the warmth of the sun.

In winter when the sun makes less of an appearance, the home is warmed with a heat pump and CO2-controlled ventilation system, integrated into the Loxone system by means of an interface.

This showhome has attracted more than 200,000 visitors. However, when no one is there the Loxone Miniserver automatically lowers the temperature. Then when a visitor is due, the temperature can be increased remotely to ensure a warm welcome when they arrive.

Shading With A Difference

The wooden slat-style of construction, pointed roof and the simple lines are not only an architectural feature but also serve a purpose in this passive house. On the one hand, the architect wanted to combine traditional construction (picture a wooden easel extending like a saddle roof) with modern construction (like a futuristic cube building). This beautiful facade also serves as a shading system for the ground floor. The wooden slats are at the perfect angle to block out the harsh rays of the sun while still letting in enough natural light.

Automatic Shading

In addition, there is also an “ordinary” shading system with external blinds that are intelligently automated by the Miniserver, depending on room temperature and the light and heat being let in from the sun. The Miniserver knows the exact geo-coordinates of the house and therefore knows where the sun is at any time of the day throughout the year. Then, after the sun has set and the lights are on inside, the Miniserver closes the blinds to give the occupants privacy.

Lock-out Protection

A particularly neat feature in this Loxone Smart Home is that it detects if the someone has left the patio door open. With this knowledge, when it comes time to close the external blinds on the patio – the section above the door will remain open to ensure neither the door nor the blinds are damaged. Likewise, if the patio door is opened while the blinds are down, the blinds will begin to open and stay open for as long as the door is open. So no risk of being locked out of your house when the shutters come down while you are outside enjoying a drink watching the sunset. The shading can of course also be controlled via various Loxone Touch switches

Brighten Up Your Day

Light was an important topic in the construction of the Passivhaus Eisenstraße. Through the large glass panes, daylight is able to perfectly brighten up the interior. On dark days or at night, the Loxone Miniserver activates the lighting in the respective rooms depending on the presence of visitors to the showhome.

The living and dining area, and in the office can be brought to life with different lighting scenes. These can be selected simply at the touch of a button with the Loxone Touch switch or via the Loxone Smart Home App. Strips of RGBW LED lighting help to set the perfect lighting mood depending on the selected scene.

Safe & Secure

With Passivhaus Eisenstraße being a showhome, it’s not always occupied – making security quite important. This is why security featuress have always been included into the Loxone setup.

Monitoring

While no one is at the showhome the Miniserver keeps watch with contact sensors on all the doors and motion sensors outside. If someone tries to gain access to Passivhaus Eisenstraße a notification immediately alerts the owners. In addition, the facility manager will be notified with a call to his mobile phone courtesy of the Loxone Caller Service.

Access

The showhome boasts intelligent access control thanks to the Loxone Intercom, an iButton reader and electronic door lock. Programmable electronic key fobs with preset access rights can be assigned to specific individuals. With the video intercom system and the access log function, the facility manager and owners are always able to see who is standing at the door or who has entered the house.

Presence Simulation

During the exhibition, Passivhaus Eisenstrasse was always well-visited. Now that the exhibition is over, people are also able to visit the showhome by appointment. You wouldn’t be able to tell from the outside though, whether someone is inside or not. With presence simulation, lighting and shading in the home behave as if someone was in fact in the showhome – deceiving any opportunistic onlookers.

Fire Protection

Security is not only about keeping away intruders but includes fire protection too. Each room in the showhome features a smoke detector Air. If one of the sensors detect that something is amiss then the facility manager will be notified via a call to his mobile.

The Sound Of Music

In Passivhaus Eisenstraße, there are 3 multiroom audio zones: the living and dining area, office and cellar. Music is managed by the Loxone Music Server and amplifier and distributed to the various zones via built-in ceiling speakers, wall speaker. Having multiple music zones in the home means that the same audio can be played throughout these rooms or something different could be played in each room.

(If you are wondering why the cellar has a music zone…It’s because during the exhibition, the company chose to show a presentation on the construction of Passivhaus Eisenstraße down in the cellar.)

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