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Blocks are used for current-sensing occupancy detection. To activate the Block Occupancy Detection feature on a node you must install the necessary hardware. For more information see Block Occupancy Hardware Installation. If you are not going to use the BOD feature, you do not need to configure blocks.

The Block Tool #

In the Main Window click blocks buttonto invoke the Block Tool.

The Block Tool in default state with no blocks defined.

Local Blocks #

If BOD hardware is installed, just click hardware scan button to automatically detect your hardware [blocks you don’t wish to monitor can be unchecked]. Otherwise, you can check the blocks you wish to activate and install the hardware later; however, until the hardware is installed the blocks will produce false readings that can affect other objects.

Remote Blocks #

If you want a signal or other object to respond to occupancy of a block on a different node, you need to specify which remote blocks the node should monitor. For each remote block you want this Node to monitor, enter the Node ID and select the block UID from the Block list, then click add remote block button to add it to the list.

When you’ve added all relevant blocks, the tool window on Node 05 might look like this:

Note that the remote blocks come from multiple Nodes.

Rail Power Relay #

When a Client node with BOD enabled boots, it runs a calibration routine on each active sensor. During calibration, rail power must be completely off or calibration will not complete correctly. That least complicated solution is to leave track power off until the layout has completely booted

Or, you can feed your block sensors (DNCT2B) through a relay and let LCOS turn local track power off whenever it needs to calibrate the sensors. You can also link a kill switch to the same relay for emergency off (we recommend a master power relay and kill switch tied to the MASTER node).

A block power relay set should be wired this way:

This circuit uses the COM terminals for output. Incoming Rail power is attached to the NC terminals of the relays. The output should be connected to the Rail inputs of all sensor boards (DNCT2A) controlled by the node.

So long as the relay is not energized, current will flow from the NC (Normally Closed) terminals through the common outputs to the track. When the relay is energized, the NC contacts are disengaged and current flow stops.

In the Configurator, the Rail Power Relay option is in the local block section of the Block Tool window. You must configure the relay object before it will be available as an option here.

Control Object Links #

Control Object links are an advanced LCOS feature, used to create action sequences or change layout lighting when a block is occupied. One use of this capability is to create a crossing that is activated whenever a block is occupied. Please see Control Objects for more information.

Any active block can be linked to one Control Object, making the block a virtual switch that can activate other objects. You must create Control Objects before they can be linked to blocks here.

In the Block Tool, click to open the Control Objects Links window.

The Control Objects window disables entries for inactive blocks.

To link a block to a Control Object, simply select the Control Object from the list next to the block ID. To be available here, the Control Object must be bound to the virtual input port.

Click Save & Close to save your settings.

When the occupancy state of a block changes, the block fires a control object event. If the new block state is “occupied” an “On Event” is fired; an “Off Event” is fired when the block becomes “unoccupied.” The behavior of those events is defined by the Control Object.

Save the Configuration #

Click save block map button to save the block data to the Client Node EEPROM.

To complete the change, the node must rebooted. On the Main Window, click reboot button to reboot and load the new configuration.

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