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LOCAL OPERATING NETWORKS
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The LonWorks technology was developed by Echelon Corp. of Palo Alto, California in partnership with Motorola..The main merit to this technology is interoperability -- achieved through intelligent devices communicating via a common protocol over one or more media. The LON architecture allows designers to develop distributed intelligence interoperable systems for applications ranging from stand-alone machines to cooperative robotics. "Distributed" means lower start-up costs, higher reliability and greater flexibility. " Interoperable" means easier commissioning, less expensive design, and greater post-installation flexibility. These qualities inevitably lower operating costs and make possible many new and exciting applications.

LON consists of nodes interconnected via common media. The nodes may be sensors, controllers, human operator interfaces (displays, terminals, keyboards, buttons) actuators and other interfaces. Routers, repeaters and gateways are available for easy interfacing to other networks and architectures. Nodes are built around the Neuron chip (by Motorola). The Neuron is a three-CPU chip that also includes RAM, ROM, EEPROM and a communications interface. Two of the CPU's take continuous care of network communications while the third is available for application implementation.

Network communications are governed by the LonTalk protocol over a variety of media -- power line, twisted pair, coaxial cable, IR, wireless, or fiber optic. Neuron C is the programming language which is used to define network variables being passed along from node to node and their functions. Being "distributed" in nature, LON is particularly well suited to distributed Artificial Intelligence (AI) applications and data/object-oriented systems.

Installed LON applications include systems for distributed control, such as the gas station management systems implemented by Shell, BP, and Agip in Europe; energy management systems implemented by Detroit Edison, Entergy, Wisconsin Electric and others; building and home automation systems (SAF of Stockholm, Sweden); industrial control systems (General Motors), telecommunications equipment monitoring systems (AT&T); etc. Control Systems offers complete non-linear HVAC systems for households up to 20,000 sq feet that implement the latest automation technology to deliver unsurpassed comfort, flexibility and energy efficiency. (Installation by subcontractors).

To learn more about LON technology and how we can help your organization or family benefit from it, please feel free to contact us.

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