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New DALI-DMX converter for lighting control

Andrew Brister 18 August 2010
New DALI-DMX converter for lighting control

Rail-DALI-DMX from Artistic Licence converts one circuit of DALI to DMX with a choice of two modes: ballast or trigger. In either mode it will simulate a user configurable number of ballasts so a DALI controller will be able to transmit.

There is an increasing demand from lighting designers who want to control DMX fixtures directly from a DALI controller. This is now achievable with Rail-DALI-DMX in ballast mode as it will simulate a number of ballasts and they will have all the features of actual DALI ballasts. Each virtual ballast will respond to the following features of DALI:

• group asssignment
• scene store and recall
• power on level
• emergency level
• direct arc values
• step up / step down commands.

In addition, the DALI short address of each ballast can be changed so this can be added to an existing DALI installation for system upgrades.

Rail-DALI-DMX in trigger mode serves as an interface between DALI and DMX systems by bridging the gap between the simple on/off function of a commercial lighting controller and the more sophisticated control of decorative lighting effects offered by DMX control.

For example, an office with lighting controlled by an existing DALI controller has recently been installed with an LED pixel wall. It is not possible to control this using DALI, so, by simply installing a Rail-DALI-DMX converter, it becomes possible to control the wall using the existing DALI control system.

Rail-DALI-DMX will simulate a configurable number of ballasts and then monitor the commands sent to these ballasts. The values and commands are then split out into channel, group and scene values and sent via DMX. In DMX there will be a block of channel values, a block of 16 channels for group values and a single channel used for scene commands. These DMX signals are then used as a trigger for the DMX controller.


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