Energy management systems

Energy management dashboards  
Energy management dashboards are a good way to refine how you use energy in your home.

Isn’t that for big buildings?

Energy management for shopping malls and large office buildings gets pretty sophisticated. Computers control lighting, external blinds, air conditioning - there are traffic monitors sensing presence of people, light intensity detectors and so forth. Surely you wouldn’t need anything like this domestically?

Energy management for the home

Energy management for the home - that is automatic energy management systems - are as yet quite rare. Systems are now being marketed though, some of which are extensions of, or products that have evolved from energy management dashboards.

There are other methods - using wireless home automation protocols like ZigBee - that allow interactive control of household appliances. An intelligent thermostat equipped with ZigBee radio capable of communicating with both the power company and the home air conditioning provides the basis of not only regulating temperature but also making use of economical tariffs - or allowing the air conditioning to be switched off during periods of high electricity demand and high tariffs.


In that case, the thermostat would continue to monitor temperature and would switch on the air conditioning again when temperature fell outside the preset allowable top or bottom limit (in the case of heat pumps). Home automation specialists can also engineer energy management using, for example, C-bus architecture.

Serious dollars are involved in energy management and much can be done by observing sensible rules for the people living in the home. That point needs to be made because it’s nice to recover the investment by way of energy cost savings.