European Installation Bus (EIB) is another “club” project hosted by Siemens, who insist that club members buy key components from themselves.  It is a decentralised, peer to peer network operating system, using a serial transmission protocol.  The system uses building blocks known as Bus Access Units (BAUs) and these are defined by a standard specification and can be implemented on any chip or processor platform chosen.  For this reason the protocol claims to be totally open as it is a specification and not an implementation (like a chip or transceiver).  The Bus Access Unit locally implements the operating system and caters for user RAM and EEPROM space. A variety of transceivers can be used for a variety of media.

For the moment, EIB has not been taken up by the HVAC industry in this country but this may change through its newly acquired ability to run on the Ethernet.  EIB have recently formed an alliance with BATIBUS to fight off the challenge from LonWorks.  EIB provides levels 1, 2, 3, 4 and 7 of the OSI Model.  More information can be found at www.eiba.com.