On November 12, 2011, while deployed in Afghanistan, U.S. Army Captain Nick Vogt and his team were investigating a newly discovered weapons cache when Vogt stepped on an improvised explosive device (IED).
Six years later, after two leg amputations, during which he met his future wife — a nurse at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center — Vogt was selected to receive a 100 percent mortgage-free, brand new custom smart home from the Gary Sinise Foundation’s R.I.S.E. program (Restoring Independence, Supporting Empowerment) featuring ELAN technology.
The Vogt’s new single-story home offers the family every advantage a house can provide for a veteran with limited-mobility, including mobile control of lighting, security, multi-room audio and video, and even the exterior door locks, all made possible by the ELAN Entertainment and Control System from Nortek Security & Control.
According to Nick Fabrick, vice president of integration firm Xtend Technologies, designer and installer of the smart home system, the mobile-device control is a game-changer for Vogt and his family.
“This is my second home project with the Gary Sinise Foundation, and one thing I’ve learned is that these veterans are some of the strongest people in the world,” Fabrick said.
“Many everyday tasks require relearning when mobility is limited, and the Xtend AV team is more than proud to help Nick Vogt simplify as many daily activities as possible. Through smartphones, an iPad and ELAN remotes and touchscreens, Nick can now control almost the entire home with one finger, from anywhere.”
New Home Automates Lighting, Fans, and Locks
Some daily tasks, such as checking the surveillance system, locking doors, playing music or turning off lights can be prohibitively difficult for limited-mobility homeowners like Vogt.
Thanks to Xtend Technologies, the home’s ELAN system integrates all of the Lutron lighting and ceiling fans, three Schlage electronic door locks, multi-room audio and video distribution, and a security and surveillance system with five ELAN cameras.
“Designing these homes is all about maximizing utility and access for the injured veteran,” Fabrick adds.
“In this home, we included three video zones, in the master bedroom, great room and outdoor patio, which each have their audio zone as well. With this design, Vogt and his family can use a variety of devices to control any TV or any room’s audio, even when they are in different rooms.”
“No matter where the family is, they have full control. If they want to lock all the doors, it takes just a few taps. If they want to turn on the kitchen lights and patio TV, that’s also just a few taps away,” Fabrick says.
“They can easily check the five security camera feeds or answer the front door with the Doorbird video doorbell, which plays audio through the home’s speakers while delivering a live video feed to the ELAN mobile app, enabling Vogt to unlock the electronic locks and let guests in through the app.”
The home’s technology relies on an ELAN gSC10 and ELAN g1 to connect all the sub-systems, allowing consolidated control through the ELAN mobile app.
The home’s video uses ELAN 4K over IP for distribution, while an ELAN S86A distributes six zones of audio. Five ELAN dome cameras provide exterior surveillance, which is recorded to the two terabyte ELAN EL-NVR-2TB rack-mount hard drive.
Smart Home Customized for Easy-Access
In addition, 15 SpeakerCraft AIM285 in-ceiling speakers deliver exceptional audio thought the home, and a Panamax M4315-Pro power conditioner keeps the electronics in the system rack safe and in top working order 24/7.
The home’s great room features a media center with a 5.1 SpeakerCraft surround sound system, including a Profile Cinema Sub in-wall subwoofer.
The home was also designed specifically with Nick’s needs in mind and includes features such as a raised shower platform that he can easily access by himself from his wheelchair, lower kitchen counters and oven, wide hallways, and touchscreens mounted at lower, easier-to-access heights as well as much more.
According to Judith Otter, COO of the Gary Sinise Foundation, the Vogt family’s new home was carefully designed to provide the most useful layout and technologies available.
“Working with our valued partners, we’ve provided Vogt with a fully navigable home and empowering technologies to help him regain his daily independence,” Otter says.