Raspberry Pi add-on targets openHAB users

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The $68 “ionware sdk1” is a home automation controller board add-on for the Raspberry Pi Zero W with 7x universal inputs and 7x digital outputs plus a OpenHABian Linux stack with graphical Ladder Logic programming.

A startup called ionware has launched an ionware starter development kit 1 home automation add-on board for the Raspberry Pi Zero W aimed at STEM students and IoT makers. The controller board runs an “ion server” stack with openHABian Linux, which provides easy setup for the open source, privacy friendly openHAB home automation stack.



The ionware server software also provides an implementation of the Ladder Logicgraphical programming language. Commonly used in PLC programming, Ladder Logic “makes it incredibly easy to construct complex but structured software programs,” says the company.

The ionware sdk1 kit combines an ionC1 controller board with a USB communications dongle, USB cable, and USB-to-serial cable. The ionC1 board is equipped with:

  • 7x universal inputs (digital and analog inputs, 0-5v, Res.) with software selectability
  • 5x relay digital outputs (24VAC/DC)
  • 2x digital outputs (0 to ~5v)
  • Temperature sensor
  • Serial coms. screw terminals for connection to Raspberry Pi
  • Micro-USB 5V power input
  • Auxiliary USB 5V power input
  • LEDs
  • 105 x 75 x 12mm, 88 grams
  • 3-year warranty

The ionware sdk1 runs an ion server stack built around the the Raspbian Lite based openHABian Linux distribution. OpenHABian offers plugins, extensions, Things, REST APIs, and more to implement the cloud-enabled openHAB IoT stack. There’s also a Raspbian config for SD card management.

The ion server also includes an “open standard web client/server based SCADA” with a realtime run-time programming interface based on Ladder Logic. Programming features include an open standard text input, as well as subroutines, counters, timers, calendar functions, Boolean logic, function blocks, For/Next loops, and bit registers for copy, search, increment, etc.

Further information

The ionware starter development kit 1 is available for $68. The first 20 customers will receive a 30 percent discount. (The discount ends May 30.) The ionware server software is available for free download.

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