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32nd IEEE Conference on Local Computer Networks

Monitoring, Controlling and Configuring a Wireless Household-Electric Network through LabVIEW Remote Virtual Interface.
Antonio Heronaldo de Sousa, Rafael Campos do Prado, Felipe Cubas Schulz
Departamento de Engenharia Elétrica Universidade do Estado de Santa Catarina Joinville, Santa Catarina, Brazil E-mails: heron@joinville.udesc.br, pradorc@gmail.com, felipecubas@gmail.com
Abstract  The objective of this work is to demonstrate the operation of a system that allows monitoring, controlling and configuring a wireless household-electric network using a Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) as the user interface. Initially, the wireless communication was established by Bluetooth. In the next step, the hardware and firmware of the appliance will be modified in order to implement a ZigBee protocol. LabVIEW has been used to develop the user interface in the PDA.

elaborated, such as sensible touch screens. Its use enables a reduction of the final cost of the household-electric by the elimination (partial or total) of components, boards and interconnection wires used in a classic user interface. In this case the PDA software will be the user interface and the wire connection could be substituted by wireless interfaces. II. MOTIVATION

I. INTRODUCTION According to CEA-HNIT (Consumer Electronics Association - Home Networking and Information Technology) a domestic net interconnects electronic products and systems, allowing the remote access and the control of those products and systems, and any available content as music, video or data [1]. The key features of this definition are the connection, access, and control. That is, the products need to be connected one to another, having access to content such as information and service. The user must have control over devices, distribution of contents and information flow inside or remotely in some place out of the house [1]. At the beginning, in order to make these differentials available in the household-electrics, we can imagine that will occur a significant increase in the production cost, because of the inclusion of interfaces based on liquid crystal displays with good graphical resolution becomes necessary, as well as advanced data entrance and network communication resources wireless or not on its construction. However, a more critical analysis an alternative that seen to be viable: the use of the same computational platform, to incorporate the necessary elements to implement the user interface with all the residence white line household-electric, to increase security, functionality and reduction of costs. This platform can be well represented by a PDA, or by a cellular phone, which is becoming more popular. A PDA, for example, presents the computational resources necessary to implement a friendly and flexible user interface. It makes use of wireless communication resources (Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Infra-Red), serial communication, memory for data storage, traditional data input devices (keyboard) and more

Reference [7] says that there have been several attempts to network the home environments through proprietary and standards solutions. The approaches to achieve this goal are classified in two groups: wired and wireless networks. Each one offers several advantages and disadvantages that depend on bandwidth capacity, installation, maintenance, and costs, among others. A key motivation for use of wireless technology is the reduction in installation cost, since new wiring is not needed. Also, wireless network transmits information with minimal installation effort. Consequently it has reduced maintenance costs. Bluetooth has been chosen as the wireless protocol in this project in order to substitute connection wires. This is a widespread protocol used in a large range of devices. At the beginning, the main goal was checking the usability of the wireless network without worry about the network performance. After that, the network performance must be improved to reach some specifications such as low power consumption, low complexity, low data rate, and high reliability. ZigBee protocol incorporates all these specifications [4]. A PDA has been chosen as the user interface because it presents the necessary computing resources to implement a friendly and flexible interface. It makes use of wireless communication resources (Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Infra-Red), serial communication, memory for data storage, traditional data input devices (keyboard) and more elaborated, as sensible touch screens. III. IMPLEMENTATION

In this work, it was considered only the communication between a washing machine and a PDA.

0742-1303/07 $25.00 © 2007 IEEE DOI 10.1109/LCN.2007.59

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” IEEE Communications Magazine Volume 39. MA. An advantage of this new interface is that it will enable an increase of the security level of the appliance. p. accessed at 09. VI. It was possible using an serial adapter (BlueCom – NAXOS). “Home networks: a standards perspective. The PDA software allows the user to receive some information from the appliance and execute commands remotely.Brazil) in 2005. if somebody opens the machine lid. great number of devices. vol. This wireless protocol has been chosen considering that it is available in the most existing handheld computers. Paul Gorday. therefore this developed architecture can be used as a model of virtual interface for others white line products. http://www. et al.com.modbus.04. security and low latency that are characteristics of the Zigbee technology [4]. For example. low consumption. We are thankful to Whirlpool Corporation – Brazil for the financial support for this work.multibras. All the appliances use the same communication protocol and a specific Graphical User Interface (GUI) for each one. Gutierrez. consisting of a PDA Tungsten E2 and a Brastemp washing machine model Turbo Performance 8kg. The developed architecture allows the substitution of the user interface of a household-electric for an equivalent virtual interface. where each one is a householdelectric. it is intended to use a microcontroller with the integrated chip for ZigBee wireless communication with the objective to control three household-electric using a PDA through ZigBee wireless communication. Nick Baker. G. I. 2003 . Dec. The Bluetooth protocol is a good way to establish the wireless communication. as to turn the machine on or off.16. REFERENCES [1] [2] B. This standard specifies a protocol on serial communication in Data Link layer of the OSI model. The main use of the PDA interface is to reproduce the functions of the control panel of the washing machine. The telegram is composed by a command byte. J.org/ getieee802/802. Bob Heile. Rumbaugh.br/inova/ Modbus. Jacobson. The embedded CPU receives the necessary signals for the proper functioning of the washing machine.40. LabVIEW is an excellent programming tool to work with PDAs because it is fast and easy to program and to establish Bluetooth communication once most of the routines are already built and ready to use. unbalanced load. through the exhibition of a variety of information about the appliance: lack of water. accessed at 04/04/2006. Through this proposal it will be also possible to reduce the maintenance costs through the monitoring of the wear of some parts of the household-electric running. energy overload. CONCLUSIONS The results show the viability of monitoring and controlling household-electric using wireless communication network and PDA user interface. “ZigBee and Bluetooth strengths and weaknesses for industrial applications. 2001. Ap/May 2005. VII.org. it does not reach some important requirements for a project of monitoring and controlling household-electric network [2]. pp. vol. the user will be informed by using a PDA. IEEE 802.4: A Developing Standard for Low-Rate Wireless Personal Area Networks”. INOVA. Programa INOVA Multibrás promoted for the Multibrás S. html. it is intended to use a microcontroller with ZigBee integrated for wireless communication. Eletrodomésticos ( Whirlpool Corporation.15. The objective is to control several household-electric using a PDA through ZigBee wireless communication. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS • Further. Modbus over serial line specification and implementation guide V1. For this reason.Freescale) was included in the system.2005.http: //standards. For that reason.15. It was not possible to change the firmware of the washing machine once the software and the electronic diagrams were not available. A prototype of this system was developed. The household-electric hardware has been modified through the introduction of the new microcontroller. it was necessary to substitute the appliance’s embedded interface by a module that makes possible a wireless communication with the PDA. August 2002. 70-77. The Bluetooth protocol is a good way to establish the wireless communication but. Addison-Wesley.org/. no. V. 1999. Booch. The Graphical User Interface presents the commands of the frontal panel and the status of the washing machine and allows the user to control and monitor the household-electric. on the other hand. Issue 12. two data bytes and an error verification byte.4.15. http://www. Ed Callaway.A. The concept of the household-electric network is being widely spread out. The new architecture is responsible for the following functions in the system: • To substitute the existing I/O interface of the appliance.78 – 85. Jose A. 8. etc. 20-25.. IV. Issue 2. The IEEE Communications Magazine.In the first stage. This module is compatible with the Bluetooth communication protocol.0. Some of these requirements are low complexity. an additional CPU (68HC908QY4 . A protocol based on Modbus standard was developed [6] to do the communication between the PDA and the washing machine. “Networking with IEEE 802. The user can choose the several set-ups of the appliance using the PDA. Rose. with communication master-slave. The household-electric network is composed by nodes. [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] 257 .ieee. RESULTS The modeling of the system was done using Unified Modeling Language (UML) [3]. The Unified Modeling Language User Guide. pp.” The IEE Computting and Control Engineering. through the Program INOVA Multibrás [5]. To do wireless communication with the PDA.