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The Neuro Difference

At Neuro Building Systems, we believe that for building automation to achieve success over the long term, it is critical to have a thorough grasp of the optimal wired and wireless architecture that must be deployed. This approach is founded on over 10 years of real-world experience implementing wireless IoT device networks in buildings.

If devices regularly fail and maintenance costs rise, the value of the network will diminish over time, until it is no longer achieving such goals as reduced energy usage and improved occupant comfort. NETWORK HEALTH is an essential metric for measuring the overall performance of a wireless IoT system.

Key features of NBS's reliable and fault tolerant IoT device networks include:
  • There must be multiple ways to reach a single node (device) on the network remotely.  Best practice utilizes a core mesh network that is always connected, along with point-to-point Wi-Fi or narrow band cellular access.  This will allow redundant channels of communication to access devices if there is a network issue.
  • All nodes (devices) that are controllable on a network must be able to operate in both local and networked mode. The local mode supports basic ongoing operation of the connected equipment. The networked mode supports scheduling, set point limits, and enhanced control capability. The device must be configured to detect loss of network connectivity and fall back to local operation after a set fault tolerant time period.
  • As equipment firmware regularly changes, it is important to have the capability to perform remote over-the-air updates to connected controllers, gateways and devices. Deploying building staff to update all firmware is inefficient, intrusive and cost prohibitive. NBS's equipment has built-in capability to provide updates, with the ability to restore back to its original state in case the update fails. These updates are made through Neuro™, our centralized cloud analytics and management platform.
  • Low power end node devices that have support for either ambient light or kinetic energy collection vastly streamline and simplify IoT device deployments. Long-term maintenance costs are reduced when devices are self-powered and do not require frequent battery change outs. In scenarios when the device operates for an extended period without harvesting energy, a backup battery picks up the load and extends the life of the device.
  • End node devices need to be kept simple, with control logic at a minimum.  Local gateways should manage the control and operation of the units, with complex operations driven by analytics and machine learning happening in the cloud. This allows for continued operation on site with basic functionality if there is a communication failure, while enabling full intelligent control to be managed where data storage, analysis and computing power can be leveraged.
  • Reliable network communication depends on strength of signal between nodes and gateways. Energy harvesting end node devices have limited range, and only communicate at set intervals to conserve power.  They cannot act as repeater nodes, which always need to remain on to listen for packets to repeat.  Star-to-mesh network design allows all end nodes, such as thermostats, to link through powered hub devices, forming a mesh network back to a head-end unit that connects to the cloud.
  • Security with wireless IoT device networks and connections to the cloud are critical features of successful deployment. Using point-to-point hardware level encryption and device authentication, NBS achieves secure communication between end nodes and gateways.  All IP connected devices are protected through VPN tunnel connections and SSL, in order to provide the highest level of secure communication to the cloud.
  • To provide maximum portability of new end node devices to the network, NBS's Gateways utilizes the latest wired and wireless communication protocols for IoT and BMS networks.  The following communication protocols/methods are supported: enOcean, 802.15.4 Protocols including Zigbee and 6LoPan, MQTT, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, BACnet, Modbus, Haystack and oBix.