By Ben Lewis, KNX Consultants.
As a member of the KNX UK Association, we were commissioned to design and install a KNX intelligent building technology solution for the new Pegaso 73.6m super motor yacht.
Pegaso Marine, managers and administrators of the Pegaso fleet, engaged AVIT Marine to provide all the high-end technology for the Pegaso. In addition to information technology, navigation tools and the on-board AV Systems, AVIT Marine was asked to provide a system that provided an optimum solution for controlling many of the key lifestyle functions for passengers aboard the yacht. For this, they called upon the expertise of KNX Consultants.
The Pegaso was built in Vigo, Galicia, Spain and the KNX installation took place over spring and summer of 2011.
Planning and design
With the Pegaso and other vessels of its type, the structure of the yacht presented particular challenges. Unlike a building, the vessel has a steel structure with non-drillable steel sections. Therefore, the KNX installation required careful practical consideration. This resulted, for example, in KNX actuators being installed at the point of their function rather than from a central point, as would have been the case in a building. For example, door lock actuators were located adjacent to doors, and blind actuators in blind headliners. The space behind the suspended ceiling, throughout the Pegaso, was fully used to accommodate KNX cabling, ductwork and other services.
The whole KNX installation was based on the principle of distributed actuation. KNX devices have been installed throughout all four decks of the Pegaso. The topology of the installation is based around a main line that runs from the main deck and through the four levels. On each deck there is an independent line segment, and each is linked with a line coupler. This distributed architecture allows the KNX system to accommodate the required number of KNX devices in each deck. The scalability of KNX is also important to the project and will allow additional devices to be added as lifestyle requirements on board change. With the guaranteed interoperability of KNX products, this will be easy to implement.
We have used our longstanding expertise in KNX intelligent building technology to provide an effective means of controlling automatically a number of functions on the Pegaso, including blinds and curtains that provide blackout at night or sun shading during the day. The yacht’s air-conditioning and heating system is linked on the same bus network, and KNX activates the dampers on the heating and ventilation ducts to control the flow of air and regulate the temperature within the living accommodation and berths.
For security, motorised locks on the yacht’s main external doors are also operated via KNX, and on the bridge, a KNX visualisation panel has been integrated alongside all of the vessel’s other electronic control systems. KNX motion sensors have been installed in the living accommodation, and in the event of unauthorised or unexpected movement, a text or email alert can be sent to the bridge or ashore to a mobile phone. The yacht can be locked down at the touch of a button.
The Pegaso’s management team and crew have control over all of these functions and can make any adjustments to the operation of the yacht’s services through iPad controls. The ship’s engineer also has access to base level control via iPhone of individual devices within the KNX system to allow diagnostic testing of function and ongoing maintenance of the features supported by the KNX infrastructure.
We were very much involved on a practical level throughout the fit-out stages of the build of the Pegaso. The commissioning of the KNX system was interwoven with the progressive completion of various sections of the vessel. This took just six months.
Experience form the project
KNX has proven the ideal solution to provide simple and effective control over lifestyle functions whilst also allowing integration with the high-end A/V, IT and communications systems designed for the yacht by AVIT Marine.
The use of the KNX ETS (Engineering Tool Software) made the programming of all the individual devices simple. The open nature and flexibility of KNX means that future enhancements to the system can also be easily made.
Commenting on our KNX solution for Pegaso, Jem Ashibende of AVIT Marine says “KNX Consultants have an in-depth knowledge of the capabilities of KNX. They provided training and were also able to show us how KNX can be successfully integrated with the Crestron and AMX control systems for multimedia. We would certainly use KNX technology again for this type of application.”
Alex Flemming of Pegaso comments, “This was our first experience with KNX, but we were delighted with the way KNX Consultants took our requests and came back with timely solutions as the project developed.”
Ben Lewis is Director and Principal Consultant of KNX Consultants, a design consultancy specialising in building control and automation using KNX (for lighting, heating and other electromechanical items such as curtains/blinds, gates etc.) offering services ranging from KNX training (including examining candidates to achieve KNX partner status), mentoring and early stage project support for newly qualified KNX partners, through to complete project work on behalf of professional clients.