Do Advanced Workplace Sensors work with CBUS, Dynalite and KNX?

by | Apr 27, 2020 | Comparisons, How to, News | 0 comments

Asking the question do Advanced Workplace Sensors work with CBUS ™, Dynalite ™ and KNX ™ are important in Australia as these systems proliferate most commercial office spaces historically.

Advanced Workplace Sensors work with CBUS ™, Dynalite ™ and KNX ™ by providing the functionality those systems are unable to provide or cannot provide as easily or cost-effectively.

Specifically climate (indoor air quality), security, safety and utilisation data collection, workflows & visualisation across an enterprise’s entire portfolio, no matter where the assets are geographically located.


Everywhere is Old

The installed based of these legacy lighting control systems is a consequence of their time in the market and ability to control lighting. In a way they heralded a new category when they were created.

It’s also because all of these systems are over 30 years old.

If these solutions are installed in a brand new shiny intelligent building today, in 10 years the technology will be 40-Years-Old.

What other 30 year old technology are you specifying or accepting into your new Intelligent Building? Not very many I would suggest.

I get it, people know HOW these systems work, they know THAT these systems work and they know WHERE to find people to fix and maintain them.

But they provide only lighting control, maybe some blinds and motors and with KNX™ some additional, often useful functionality is offered. That each of these systems are still being installed today in commercial offices is a testament to the robustness and utility.

However, I digress and the answer to the question Do Advanced Workplace Sensors work with CBUS™, Dynalite™ and KNX™ is YES.

Let’s walk through it.


Understanding How Advanced Workplace Sensors Work with CBUS ™, Dynalite ™ and KNX ™

Fundamentally Advanced Workplace Sensors are designed to replace existing lighting control and provide a dense, wireless constellation of autonomous sensors which provide value beyond lighting alone across 5 core competencies.

Climate ( indoor air quality), security, safety utilisation and lighting is measured, monitored and controlled by the advanced workplace sensors which use wireless gateways with on board edge compute power to stream this data to the cloud analytics, machine learning and visualisation platform.

They also create a high bandwidth, low latency wireless network that can be exploited by other building services for wireless transmission of building data.

Same Primary Control as CBUS ™, Dynalite ™, KNX ™

For lighting control applications, advanced workplace sensors also do the 2 primary things that CBUS ™, Dynalite ™ and KNX ™do – turn lights on and off / dim; depending on the time, time of day, environmental conditions, user inputs and other system inputs with some conditional or sequential logic programming.

However, advanced workplace sensors control lighting wirelessly using intra-luminaire DALI or solid-state switching, so no control cabling between luminaires is required.

Imagine a tenancy of flush-mounted troffers, each with their own advanced workplace sensor embedded or mounted adjacent in the case of downlights and architectural fixtures.

These embedded sensors are powered by the DALI2 drivers directly, which also powers the attached luminaire, creating a mesh of intra-luminaire controlled fixtures. This maintains the DALI dimming performance one expects today and eliminates the hassles of DALI wiring between fixtures.

In fact, from an installation perspective for the contractor this is literally plug and play to 240v feeds.

Each of these sensors meshes and communicates with the others in the environment, acting autonomously whether the gateways or internet connection is live or not, storing data locally and undertaking local edge compute too.

More than 95% of commercial offices today would use DALI when dimming was required, and using the new DALI2 standard with D4i enabled remote drivers positions the advanced workplace sensors ahead of most existing systems right out of the blocks.

And this new data delivered by DALI 2 of device temperature, operational status and more, is wireless transmitted for historical records and instantly able to be queried by an FM on site, wirelessly.


Replace or Co-Exist?

So if a tenancy has a Dynalite ™ system, for example,  installed how does the advanced workplace sensors solution also work?

It makes no sense to have 2 control systems operating the same lighting – all that happens is conflict and unhappy occupants and facility managers.

However, if a building owner or manager, tenant or facility manager requires:

  • granular indoor air quality monitoring of C02, TVOC, humidity, temperature, PM2.5 PM10;
  • Asset tracking or real-time tracking to meet public health measures enforced for pandemic like COVID-19,
  • or occupancy and utilisation data for better space planning based on real data …

…the Advanced Workplace Sensor solution is installed as a supplementary system.




Senior Lecturer of Business Administration, Harvard Business School


John Macomber from Harvard Business School has stated this in April 2020.

I’ve previously written about the benefits of Advanced workplace sensors too: “I predict a world where those buildings without sufficient data (or sufficiently valid data) about their environmental operation – and therefore their sustainability and wellness – will not be competing for the top tier tenants and rents and will be relegated to the lower-yielding portfolios.”

His research which is presented in his book  Healthy Buildings: How Indoor Spaces Drive Performance and Productivity, postulates, savvy business leaders and landlords will begin to leverage healthier indoor spaces as recruitment tools and sources of competitive advantages and that a healthy building has a positive economic impact for all parties involved and data is the key to unlocking this value.

As the remote advanced workplace sensors are powered by their own 240v device, and use the existing ceiling infrastructure for mounting, very little if any additional cabling is required and costs are minimised.

A number of wireless gateway are installed based on the density of sensors and the depth, width and frequency of data being recorded. Power and  CAT cable is all that is required just like any other WAP.

An adjacent benefit of the installation of this secure, robust and scalable wireless networks is related to future lighting upgrades.


Wireless Infrastructure provides Painless Future Lighting Upgrades.

Once that wireless infrastructure is in place a lighting upgrade from a technology perspective is simply easier.

  1. Remove the old lighting and cabling and system.
  2. Plug and play new fixtures with embedded Advanced Workplace Sensors on board, connect the remote driver.
  3. No further infrastructure required.

Schedules, groups, lighting levels, motion time outs, daylight harvesting – all of the lighting control capabilities one would expect are available after initial on-site commissioning – which takes less than 5 seconds per sensor with a torch and a mobile tablet.

Existing lighting control panels on walls would largely be removed. If replacement was required, the topology is the same. Install a 240v wireless mesh device in the wall space and connect it to the control panel provided.

All scene programming is done in the cloud App on or offsite, from anywhere in the world at any time of day.


Answering the question Do Advanced Workplace Sensors work with CBUS ™, Dynalite ™ and KNX ™ is critical for all stakeholders to understand because:

  • The world is transitioning quickly to one where public health, office occupant health and productivity are impacted by more than just lighting schedules in offices.
  • The bucket of energy available for buildings shrinks year on year and the list of corporate commitments to be carbon zero by 2030 increase.
  • Data, not guesses, drive decisions and deliver real insights to maximise the yield of these building assets and provide compliance reporting from which these valuations are provided.



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