news - April 2020
Sophisticated Simplicity from QMotion
Automated shading reduces energy consumption and creates warm ambience in this solar-powered Calgary home.
description of project
WHEN THE PRESIDENT AND CEO OF DIRRT, a builder of custom pre-fab residential and commercial spaces, opens the door to his new home in Calgary, he’s greeted by more than a residence for him and his wife. Running on solar energy, offering a cozy aesthetic in line with the Danish hygge concept, and delivering a wow factor with the very latest AV and environmental technologies, the 3,000-square-foot space is also a showpiece for DIRRT and its capabilities. One key technology bringing the modern masterpiece together is automated shading, which not only reduces energy consumption — an important consideration in a solar-powered home — but also makes it simple for the homeowners to take advantage of natural light to create a warm ambiance.
For integrator GiCor, the windows of the home created a few challenges when it came to selecting and deploying an automated shading solution. First, they were extremely large — ranging from 72 inches to a whopping 152 inches — so a manufacturer was required that could accommodate these sizes. Second, they opened inwards in the European style — which would interfere with shades being lowered — necessitating a workaround to ensure proper operation. And finally, a manual override feature was needed in the event the system ever went down. To meet these requirements, GiCor utilized QMotion’s Qadvanced Intelligent System (QIS) hardwired shades featuring REVOLUTION® fabric from M + N Textiles.
To accommodate the home’s windows, QMotion offers large shades that are simple to install, use standard Cat 5e or 6 cables for both power and communication, and offer the option of ZigBee communication natively in the shades. Easily integrated into the home’s Control4 home automation system via a native ZigBee driver, the QMotion shades are controlled using handheld remotes and touchscreens throughout the home. Alexa voice control is provided via Amazon Echo Dot and a custom-made circuit board from GiCor that allows them to know what room they’re in.
To address the issue of the European-style windows, GiCor installed a contact sensor at the bottom of each. If a shade is given a command to lower when a window is open, it will only lower 22 percent of the way down, stopping just above the open window. To err on the side of caution, the shade will also only lower 22 percent if the sensor is broken. Additional sensors in the home include motion detectors in the wife’s dressing room. When someone walks in, they automatically trigger the shades to lower and the lights to turn on
“This home demanded a more sophisticated grade of shading solution, and we knew QMotion would be up for the challenge,” said Giles Dupas, owner of GiCor. “With their patented motor design, QIS shades only require a minimum amount of power and offer the manual override feature we needed, in addition to providing extremely quiet motors and simple integration with control and automation systems — a key aspect of this project. The homeowners love the shading system and its contribution to their hygge lifestyle, while DIRRT’s clients are impressed with the advanced technology of this unique space.”
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