CZone digital control system

CZone digital control system to control you electrical environment. A boats electrical wiring system has not changed much over the years, bus bars, lots of wires and heavy cables, fuses etc. However recently we have seen more Multiplexing i.e. Digital Switching as a way to simplify wiring, and to provide easier monitoring and control of the systems.

New Zealand Company BEP marine brought out their CZone system a couple of years ago and since then has more users opting into the system. The system is a complete electrical system so you are more likely to find it on new boat construction. Retrofit might be challenging but can be done.

CZone(TM) is a digital networked power control and monitoring system, using a common NMEA 2000 CAN bus. CZone replaces normal wiring with a single wire to shorten cable runs. By decentralizing the DC power distribution system, and moving circuit control and protection devices closer to loads, CZone enables shorter cable runs and reducing the size of conductors. CZone is scalable on boats ranging from 25 to 90 feet. Modules can easily be added to best suit the vessel’s needs. The Plug and Play system is designed for simple, fast installation requiring no factory set-up.

CZone on-board

Panbo the Marine Electronics blog has a story last week on the Americas cup and one of the VIP Boats and here is a snipet; Something else that’s special about these vessels is that when you leave the boat for the day, it waits a few minutes and turns off its own lights and rotates battery switches to the correct positions. During my tour I learned that this is a feature of the BEP CZone system discussed before on Panbo. The BEP battery switches in the middle of the picture above have embedded motors in them which — as long as they are not placed in a hard off position — can rotate On/Off under the control of the CZone digital control system. The captain explained that the CZone system is a big contributor to giving this boat a very simple start-up / shut-down sequence,

CZone™is what you want in a digital control system designed for manufacturers and installers of Marine, RV and Specialty Vehicles. It simplifies installation of electrical systems through the replacement of complicated, cumbersome wiring to switch and fuse panels, with state of the art, robust interfaces and light NMEA 2000 network cable. It also provides the end user a sophisticated solution through the automation of complicated control and monitoring issues associated with today’s on board systems.

CZone™ web site

INSTALLATION

Builders recognise an immediate benefit with reductions in cable usage, harness weights and installation times. CZone™ also integrates many stand alone components into one intuitive system. Wiring is dramatically simplified, CZone™ is designed to remove complex switching clusters and wiring runs. Integrated diagnostics ensures fault finding is simple. CZone™ is the digital networking system that is both cost-effective and scalable. Modules can easily be added into the system to best suit the OEM and end-users’ needs.

INTEGRATION

CZone™ is NMEA 2000 compliant and uses the standard Micro cables and connectors. Being NMEA 2000 compliant you can have trust in the network. This also allows a single network backbone to be installed for multiple systems (CZone™ and other NMEA 2000 devices). Aditionally, CZone™ can share certain monitoring functions with other NMEA 2000 compliant screens.

CONFIGURATION

We provide the tools to help you determine the modules needed based on your specific requirements. Then, simply program with the CZone™ intuitive configuration tool.

VERSATILITY & SECURITY

CZone™, designed for 9-32V systems, features built-in timers, dimmers (including support for halogen lighting), alarms, voltage reducers and load shedding. With safety in mind, CZone™ features a manual bypass. Our No-Single-Failure-Point technology ensures a plug-n-play system that is designed to handle mishaps. If a module is damaged, the system will automatically program the replacement module, when it is plugged in. This means any module can be replaced without using high tech service people. Our security features allow custom configurations that can be locked.

What if it all goes wrong

This is a question asked because these systems are complicated in technology and spare parts are not common. Digital controls if improperly engineered or implemented could be recipe for problems. In a traditional system you can replace a fuse and other parts simply found.

BEPs has addressed this with their No-Single-Failure-Point technology. The CZone plug-n-play system is designed to handle mishaps. If a module is damaged, the system will automatically program the replacement module, when it is plugged in. CZone™ also features a manual bypass.

Several companies have integration of their products with CZone including; Simrad, Victron and Mastervolt. MC2Catamarans is one boat builder who boasts about CZone

MasterBus and CZone come together

Since the integration of Mastervolt into the Marine division of Actuant Electrical the engineers at Mastervolt headquarters inAmsterdamand the BEP engineering team inNew Zealandhave been busy working together to provide a seamless connection between the two companies networked technologies into one system.

Both companies have extensive CAN based networked systems made up of Digital Switching, Systems Monitoring and Power Conversion devices. “Bringing the CZone and MasterBus systems together has been a relatively easy task”, says Jarrod Sagar, Global Product manager for Digital Switching at BEP, “as both companies had the same original philosophy for these systems, which was to bring all the points of control and monitoring of the on board systems onto one intuitive display, a central point and seamless automation simplifies boat use for the user.”