Do you want to have perfect ambience while reading or watching TV? Here’s how you can build a dimmer switch for automating your home.
Capacitive sense dimmable light switch
Silicon Labs offers a low-cost ‘Capacitive Sense Dimmable Light Switch Reference Design’ that provides color, color tuning and dimming control capabilities that traditional switches cannot achieve. Unlike conventional switches, these wireless, battery-powered switches are easy to place anywhere in a home. The design includes a capacitive sensing technology to detect different gestures such as touch, hold, and swipe.
The switch features a EM3587 integrated System-on-Chip (SoC) with an ARM Cortex-M3 MCU and a 802.15.4 radio, which is Thread upgradable. The switch also includes a capacitive sensing EFM8 Sleepy Bee 8-bit MCU that senses 6 capacitive touch points to detect user taps (on/off), holds (brightness or color control) and lateral swipes (mode selection). The design offers up to 3 years of operation on a single CR2032 coin-cell battery. This design is part of Silicon Labs’ ZigBee-based home automation reference designs. The company offers two ZigBee gateway options to complement the reference designs. Click here for the reference design.
2-wire Bluetooth Wall Switch
Typically, smart wall switches with wireless connectivity, occupancy/vacancy sensing and/or voice control require a neutral return wire to power the unit, which is not always available in retrofit situations. Power Integrations offers a reference design for two-wire Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) wall switch that is compatible with retrofit wiring and LED lights. The design consumes less than 500 µA in standby mode. It is based on LinkSwitch-TN2 offline switcher ICs, which have quiescent consumption of less than 75 µA. The ICs’ ultra-low current consumption and high light-load efficiency ensure compatibility with energy-efficient LED bulbs rated down to 3 W and are ideal for no-neutral wall switch wiring. Key applications include wireless lighting control, occupancy and vacancy sensors, motion detectors, wall dimmers, and shading controls.
Click here for the reference design.
Digital wall dimmer for halogen and low-consumption lamps
STMicroelectronics’ STEVAL-ILD004V1 design offers an innovative and low-cost power topology for a light wall dimmer using two sensitive TS820-600FP SCRs and a single STGF10NC60KD IGBT to dim the following lamp types: 100 – 240 V halogen lamps, SELV halogen lamps through magnetic or electronic transformers, and new CFL and LED dimmable lamps. Control of the board is achieved with the STM8S103F2 microcontroller. Click here for the reference design.