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RS485 Home Things Networking


Example of rapidly prototyped system using Hypercube - Quad RS485 Home Things Mesh Network of Duinos

  • Above Hypercube has 4 STDuino clones networked with RS485 (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RS-485 ).
  • The above prototype R&D system is 5S compatible - you can dismantle the entire system into boards and re-assemble back in minutes because everything is connectorized.
  • RS485 is a little cheaper to implement home automation networks than wireless, and it is more secure. It does not use the Internet, so there are no protocol heavy code writing to get it all working.
  • The communication between devices is through a differential drive which allows for greater transmission distances (about 1km) and anything up to 64 devices or more.
  • Multiple RS485 networks are easy to implement with a simple controller such as STDuino to partition the home networks into different networks to speed up networking.
  • The devices are best connected with 2 core shielded data cable. The master's GND can be connected to the shield to improve signal integrity over long distances.

Physical Wiring Diagram

  • Each of the Duinos have their RS232 TX and RX connected to RS485 interface.
  • Only the first and last devices have 120R termination resistors fitted. The other devices in the middle do not have termination. It is possible to measure between A B with a multimeter set to Ohms and obtain approximately 50 to 60 Ohms. Anything lower indicates may be more than two 120R resistors added to the lines A B causing lower resistance readings.
  • What is lacking with RS485 is well written multi-tasking software suitable for home automation that works with Arduino type of environment.
  • We will making such software with well written multi-tasking software so you can connect a PIR detector for security, RFID for opening doors, vibration sensors, thermal sensors and so on and then open source it for the Hypercube.

RS485 Wired Mesh Networking

  • For R&D purposes, the RS485 network can be treated as a physically wired mesh network. It is possible to develop an endless variety of proven easy to debug mesh protocols quickly over an RS485 physical mesh network than a real wireless mesh network.
  • RS485 (with some Hypercubes in the middle) presents an easy to develop wired mesh networking software which are then easy to bolt on to wireless mesh networks.
  • In an ideal R&D environment, the A and B lines are connected by Hypercube relay boards to the RS485 bus and they are randomly switched on and off. The power to the Duinos are also cycled this way in a custom Automated Testing Equipment (ATE) built around the project. The mesh must survive this kind of attack without locking up to become a robust network with multi-tasking Home Automation gadgets attached to each of the Duinos.
  • A large part of corporate Bluetooth and mesh developer software is laughable at this moment in time (2018) because they are not properly multi-tasking or debugged and easily lock up if you provoked them with the relay ATE testing method mentioned above.
  • Hypercube development system aims to repair all of this with robust open source networking code and developer systems that replicate the real world of Home Automation.

Internet of Things

  • At any time, the entire Home devices can be made accessible through Internet to add to the Internet of Things by use of a Pi like home controller to accept RS232 signals from Rs485 converter and put a web interface to it.
  • We do plan to make the Pi like open sourced ARM SoC Board and release with it the web interface and Python server software to interface with the serial port through RS485 to control all the Home gadgets attached. This we think is robust because for Internet of Things you need one web interface to control the whole house (not myriads of web interfaces - one for each device). As a developer, you can then attach an infinite variety of gadgets to the RS485 network(s) and properly start reporting on the status of the whole house to one web interface that you can remotely access from anywhere in the world. From security devices to pet monitoring devices, to hydroponics, to environmental control, just one web interface provides the full control service. If we give you the web interface and all the mult-tasking software and gadgets that work with the Hypercube, you will be able to control the whole house in ways not easily possible today.

Hypercube For Robust Home Automation

  • IoT Home automation is patchy - not least because of foot dragging by telecom companies which means very few people have at the moment the cheapest Internet node which happens to be symmetric 1 gigabit fiber Internet. Products like RING (camera security system) arrive, but there is no upload bandwidth for data. Easily solved by installing 1gbit symmetric fiber Internet, but to add insult to injury, none of the major telecom companies will switch to installing fiber through copper ducts for fake reasons (unless of course if the data link is for themselves which adds to the lies already marketed).
  • Add to that the invasion of Wi-Fi devices into the maker market that are under powered for a lot of things and heavy with large amounts of flash for the protocol stack with hardly anything left of IoT.
  • For a good engineer wishing to kit out his or her home with everything under the sun in terms of cheap home automation gadgets, the world is awash with cheap gadgets, but there is no realistic way today of integrating all that technology into a meaningful robust expandable system that can say add a hundred sensors, open 20 doors with RFID, take care of the solar energy system, battery management of gadgets around the house, operate sweepers, and provide a rich environment to add more technology.
  • Hypercubes are designed to address that issue by providing a means for building robot kit, and then add robust multi-tasking software that doesn't break because you added 10 or 20 peripherals into one system.
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Page last modified on June 27, 2018, at 01:59 PM