Plug Load Controller (PLC)

A Plug Load Controller device manages controlled outlets in office areas or buildings. Certain office appliances need to be powered to provide uninterrupted service; these devices are connected to unmanaged outlets. Other appliances like fans, monitors need not be powered if there are no occupants. These would be plugged into the controlled or managed outlet for automatic shutoff. A Plug Load Controller device controls the provision of power to the managed outlets of a wall power receptacle. It is mounted on a junction box in the ceiling or a wall.

A Plug Load Controller device is configured to work with a “motion-group” that provides its occupancy information.  The deployed PLC will receive information from the motion group where it belongs and will apply the profile decisions based on occupancy or vacancy. PLCs are always ‘act only’ devices performing whatever is configured in the Plug Load Controller profile when the sensors within the motion group sense motion. The Plug Load Controller uses the responses from the sensors to determine if it should be in its occupancy or vacancy state. If it does not receive a response within a fixed time, then it transitions to its safety state of on or off. PLCs can be part of multiple motion groups, or multiple Plug Load Controller can belong to the same motion group. Plug Load Controller need not belong to any motion group but can still be part of a switch group.

When Plug Load Controllers are part of the switch group and motion group, the motion group settings override the switch group settings. For instance, when the switch group is set to Manual on/Auto-off, the lights and PLCs are off. However, when motion is detected, the PLC will turn on even if the lights are off. This is useful in situations when devices need to be changed without turning the lights on.

To add a Plug Load Controller device, refer to the article Adding Plug Load Controller.

View Plug Load Controller (PLC) Details

Double-click the Plug Load Controller (PLC) icon on the floor plan. The Plug Load Controller Details dialog box contains three tabs, which are:

  • Overview – Shows the status, state, and configuration of a Plug Load Controller and includes:
    • Controls to modify the operational mode (Auto or Manual (On/Off))
    • The Reboot button will reboot the fixture with the settings as per the Plug Load Controller Details.
  • Plugload Profile – This shows the configuration of the behavior for the plugload. Note that this is the same display shown for profiles, as described in Creating Plugload Profiles. This tab also includes the Push Plugload Profile It is used to cause a change of profile instance to be immediately sent (pushed) to the plugload instead of waiting until the next update cycle.
    Note: The Push Plugload Profile button will be active only when a profile assigned to a plugload is changed.
  • Energy Summary – This shows the energy savings (past and current) and the plugload's current energy load. 

Example of the Plugload Details screen showing the Overview tab:



Add Plug Load Controllers

Plug Load Controller switches on and off power outlets based on occupancy input received from the
sensors. Refer to the article Plug Load Controller (PLC) to know about PLCs. After an organization is set up in Manage and at least one Gateway added to Manage, you can add the PLC to the system. 

The procedure for adding PLC includes:

     •  Discovering Plugload
     •  Commissioning Plugload

Discovering Plug Load Controller

To discover a PLC on a floor:

  1. Select the floor in the Facilities tree.
  2. Click Devices.
  3. Click the Plugloads sub-tab. A list of discovered and commissioned PLCs is displayed. 
  4. Click the Discover button.


In the Discover PLC pop-up,

  1. Select the appropriate Gateway.
  2. Type in the Number of installed Plug Loads in the facility. 

Tip: The Number of installed Plugloads must be more than the Number of discovered Plugloads.

  1. Click Start to discover Plug Loads. When all PLCs are discovered, the number of discovered Plugloads is displayed.


Commissioning Plug Load Controller

After discovering the PLCs, the next step is to commission them. To commission and place a PLC on the floor plan,

  1. Select a Floor in the Facilities panel.
  2. Click Devices > Plugloads sub-tab to view the list of PLCs.
  3. Select a PLC and click the Commission button in the Action column. Alternatively, you can also click the Bulk Commission button to commission multiple PLCs on the same floor.


The Commission and Place Plug Load screen is displayed.


In the Commission and Place Plug Load menu, 

  1. Select the PLC by clicking on it in the left panel.
  2. Select the required profile from the Profile drop-down list.
  3. Click on the Commission and Place button to commission PLC.

Commission and Place Plug Load on the Floor plan

Initially, place the PLC on the floor plan, right-click and select Commission and Place


After the initial placement of the Plugload, you can drag it to its actual location on the floor plan. The commissioned Plug Load icon is displayed on the floor plan. Refer to the Device Icons article for a description of the device icon status.  

For configuring a Plug Load profile instance, refer to Plug Load profiles.



Create or Edit a Plug Load Controller Profile

A plug load controller (PLC) profile is a set of configuration values that determine the settings of the parameters of a PLC device. The most common reason to modify the profile attributes is to have a better match with the environment of the organization. During installation, the start times for the periods of a day, and the weekdays are selected to match the occupancy patterns of the organization. The configuration values are used by the PLC to control power to the controlled outlet. The configuration is similar to that for sensors, in that different behaviors can be specified for different periods of the day, and expected occupancy (for workdays) and expected vacancy (for weekend days). It also supports overrides for demand-response and scheduled vacancies (holidays). 

To ease the application of PLC profiles, Manage ships with a default template. Additional templates can be created based on this template. Template instances can be created based on needed behavior to match the needs of the users within the organization.

This article describes how to create or edit a PLC Profile instance. Only system and facility administrators can create profile templates and instances. All other users may edit the values in the profile instances. Profile templates and instances are predefined values that determine the light level settings of a fixture; these instance values can be modified as per your requirement. 

To modify profile instance values:

Step 1: Click on Profile Templates in the left panel to display the list of available profile instances.

Step 2: Select the required profile instance.

Step 3: Click the Settings tab.


To create a new PLC Profile, click the Create button under the Settings tab. Enter the Plug load Profile Name and edit the attributes as per your requirements. Click Save.


To edit PLC Profile, select the profile under the Settings tab and click Edit. Change one or more values as per your need. For a description of the profile attributes, refer to the article Profile Basic Attributes. Click the Update button to apply the changes.  




Plugload Profile Basic Attributes

This article explains the Plugload attributes for creating the Profile Instance. 

Plugload Profile Attributes

Every plugload profile template and instance has a name, which can be changed. Additionally, when a plugload instance is created, specify the name of the instance from which you want the new profile instance to be cloned. The following is an example of the basic fields for a plugload instance shipped with the system that cannot be changed:


The following is an example of the basic fields for a plugload profile instance that was created, and can be modified:


Click the Update button to apply any changes made in any section.

Periods of a Day and Weekdays

A plugload profile has the following fields:

  • Period of the Day

The Plugload profiles support four periods of the day, which are:

  1. Morning – The period that comes after Night. A typical Morning period would be from 6:00 am to 9:00 am.
  2. Day – The period that comes after Morning. A typical Day period would be from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.
  3. Evening – The period that comes after Day. A typical Evening period would be from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm.
  4. Night – The period that comes after Evening and before Morning of the next day. A typical Night period would be from 8:00 pm to 6:00 am.
  • Weekdays settings – The configuration allows any day to be classified as a weekday or a weekend day. For example, some businesses (such as a retail office) operate Tuesday through Saturday. For them, Sunday and Monday would be typed as weekend days, and the other days would be weekdays.
  • Active motion window (1-200) (min) – The length of time to continue supplying power to the controlled outlet even after no additional motion has been detected. During periods when it is expected that the controlled outlet should be powered, such as during normal organization operation hours, the value should be a longer length of time, such as 15 minutes or more. During other times, a short length, such as 3 minutes, should be used. In fact, you can set the value to 0.1 minutes for a very short window. For example, if the controlled outlet stays on for a long time after the last occupant has left the area, it is the result of having a large value for the active motion window. Reducing this value will shorten the time the controlled outlet is on when there are no occupants present.
  • Controlled Outlet- There are four modes of operation for the controlled outlet. The first two are applicable for timer-based controls such as fans or furniture mounted task lighting, and the other two are applicable for occupancy-based settings.
    • Always on – The controlled outlet is powered during the period. This mode is required when power is necessary always, especially for emergency fixtures.
    • Always off – The controlled outlet is not powered during the period. This mode may be configured for demand-response or scheduled vacancies (holiday) overrides.
    • On when occupied – The controlled outlet supplies power if there is occupancy.
    • On when vacant – The controlled outlet is powered when there is no occupancy (vacancy). This is applicable when the plugload controls power to heating or cooling devices; for example, in an office building where an area must be pre-heated or pre-cooled before operating hours.


  • Override Profile Settings – Up to eight override instances can be set up to override regular plugload profile schedules to meet special circumstances or conditions. These are configurable for Holiday and DR plugload overrides. Both the Active motion window and Controlled outlet can be customized for each override.


Plugload Profile Advanced Attributes

The advanced attributes for a plugload profile are grouped into:

  • Holiday Override Plugload Profile – Assign override profile on a holiday. Supports four-holiday overrides, Overrides 5 through 8, and No override options.
  • Demand Response (DR) Level (Low-High) – The sensitivity to respond to a DR event is configured as Low, Moderate, High, and Special. Select an override profile for each DR level. Up to four DR overrides, Overrides 1 through 4, and No override options are supported at each level.
  • Safety Settings – A plugload operates as a part of a motion group. When it is not a part of a motion group, or when the plugload does not receive communication from the other members of the motion group, it operates in safety mode. The behavior of the plugload when operating in safety mode can be configured. The attributes that can be set include:
    • Number of attempts (1-10) - The maximum number of attempts to use in obtaining the occupancy status from motion group members before transitioning to safety mode.
    • The time interval (1 - 600) (in seconds) to wait for a response from motion group members before initiating another attempt.
    • Whether the controlled outlet will be On or Off during safety mode.


View Profile Assigned to Plugload

To view the profile assigned to a Plugload,

  1. Click on a Plugload icon on the floor plan. Hovering the cursor over the icon displays the profile assigned to the plugloads. Refer to the article Device Icons for a description of the device status icons.
  2. In the facilities panel, select a floor, and click Devices > Plugloads tab. The Plugload table lists the profiles assigned to the plugloads in the Current Profile column.

To display the list of plugloads using a specific profile instance, click on the name of the plugload instance in the Plugload Profile Templates, and then click on the Devices tab.


Change Profile for a Plugload

The profile for a Plugload is initially set when a Plugload is commissioned. Before you change a Plugload profile, ensure that the profile exists or see how to create or edit a profile. To assign a profile to plugloads, select a floor in the facility left panel.

It can later be changed by any of the following actions:

Click the Floor Plan tab and select one or more Plugloads on a floor plan display, and right-click—Select Assign Profile in the resulting pop-up.


In the Assign Profile window, select the required profile instance, and click Apply to assign a profile instance to the selected plugloads. 


You can also assign a profile to a plugload from the Fixture Details screen. Double-click a Plugload on the floor plan and assign a profile from the Current Profile drop-down list.


If you need to modify the Plugload profile settings, you may edit the values in the profile. See Edit Profile.

Configure Plugload Groups

This article helps you to configure the following groups for Plugload:

  • Motion Group: Groups used for motion detection sharing are called “motion groups”. Refer to the article Create Motion Group to create a Motion group for Plugload.
  • Switch Group: A plugload can also be a part of a switch group, and it will then behave as per the other members of the switch group. Refer to the article Create Switch Group to create a Switch group for Plugload.
  • Configure Groups: To configure a switch group, motion group, apply scene template, and profile to sensors, plugloads – all in one step, refer to the article Configure Groups.


Upgrade Plugload Firmware


Every Plugload Controller (PLC) needs to be upgraded to v2.9.6 after installation.

Only registered partners and customers have access to firmware downloads. If you are registered in our database, please sign in and download the latest Plugload firmware image (3538_pl.bin) file and then add the firmware image to Manage.  Follow the instructions in  Firmware Image Upgrade for Sensors, Gateways, and Plugloads to upgrade the PLC. 

If you do not have access, please submit a ticket with Enlighted Support.

Replace a Defective Plug Load Controller (PLC)

If the red LED on a plug load controller is on continuously, you will need to return the unit. Please check the procedure for obtaining the Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA).

After receiving the replacement PLC, remove the current PLC, and install the replacement in its place. Then, discover and commission the PLC.   

Discover the Plug Load Controller

To discover a PLC on a floor:

  1. Select the floor in the Facilities tree.
  2. Click Devices.
  3. Click the Plugloads sub-tab. A list of discovered and commissioned PLCs is displayed. 
  4. Click the Discover button.


In the Discover PLC pop-up,

  1. Select the appropriate Gateway from the dropdown. Note that the Gateway should be the same as the old PLC.
  2. Type in the Number of installed Plug Loads in the facility. 

Tip: The Number of installed Plugloads must be more than the Number of discovered Plugloads.

  1. Click Start to discover Plug Loads. When all PLCs are discovered, the number of discovered Plugloads is displayed.


Manage adds the RMA Plug Load and lists it in the Plugload table.  Select the new PLC and click the Commission button in the Action column.


In the Commission and Place Fixtures screen,

  1. Select the PLC that needs to be replaced on the floor plan by clicking on it.
  2. If required, select a profile from the list.
  3. Right-click the PLC on the floor plan and select RMA in the pop-up to commission the PLC, as shown below.


Click OK on the screen that is displayed. Wait until Success is displayed and click Done.

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