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Reporting appliance power consumption over powerline


Here is a idea I had for appliances resource consumption reporting (ARC).

This post describes an appliance standard for energy consumption reporting, with extensions to report consumption of other resources. (Powerline products extend Internet access to any existing power outlet. Netgear and other brands sell devices with this techonology).

Below a a description of a method of producing and distributing this information in a home network environment with support for powerline networking:
  • Add built-in powerline (network using the electrical cables) support to a fridge, toaster, microwave, tv, ps3, xbox etc. This would allow all appliances to be connect to a in home network. I'm assuming this would add 10-50$ extra to the cost of producing the appliances.
  • Add power-line support to home routers (dlink, netgear and all other brands of wireless routers should come with power-line support by default).
  • Create a standard for the appliances to find the home routers using the powerline connection, without configuration. Appliances would publish the energy consumption to the router. This would be done using a HTTPS PUT request with the appliance name, appliance unique ID, appliance TYPE (kind of like mime type, but for appliances), the period in minutes (5,15,30 minutes), and the number of watts spent in that amount of time, other types of consumption would also apply. Date and time are marked on the router, to avoid requiring that all appliances have a built in synchronized clock. All arguments are be passed in json format and included on the body of the HTTP message.

Example of the JSON for a fridge composed of 2 devices

{
     "devices": 
     [     
         {     
             "name": "Samsung Fridge",
             "id": "Samsung Fridge M-2345 SERIAL5-23234-8765",
"type": "refrigeration/fridge",
             "data":              
             [
                 {
                    "resource": "energy",
                    "unit": "watt",
                    "minutes": 15, 
                    "consumption": 400,
},
                 {
                    "resource": "water",
                    "unit": "mL",
                    "minutes": 15, 
"consumption": 550,
                 },
             ]
         }
         {     
             "name": "Samsung Ice Maker",
             "id": "Samsung Ice Maker M-2345 SERIAL5-23234-8765",
"type": "refrigeration/icemaker",
             "data":
             [ 
                 {
                    "resource": "water",
                    "unit": "mL",
                    "minutes": 15, 
"consumption": 100,
                 }
             ]
         }  
]
 }

Example for a TV composed of 2 devices

{
     "devices": 
     [     
         {     
             "name": "Sony Plasma TV",
             "id": "Sony Plasma TV M-2SDF5 SN HGJF72635-987-P,
"type": "entertainment/tv",
             "data":
             [
                 {
                    "resource": "energy",
                    "unit": "watt",
                    "minutes": 15,
                    "consumption": 300,
},
                 {
                    "resource": "data",
                    "unit": "KiB",
                    "minutes": 15, 
"consumption": 134235,
                 },
             ]
         }
         {     
             "name": "Sony Plasma TV - Google TV",
             "id": "Sony Plasma TV - Google TV M-2SDF5 SN HGJF72635-987-P,
             "type": "entertainment/webtv",
             "data":
             [ 
                 {
                    "resource": "data",
                    "unit": "KiB",
                    "minutes": 15, 
"consumption": 1983335,
                 },
             ]
         }  
]
 }


  • The wireless router receives the request from the appliance and timestamps the request and caches it. At a certain specific interval the cached requests are uploaded to a pre configured wed site, selected by the user.
  • This setup allows the user to use the router interface to configure where all appliances ARC messages should be delivered.
  • The wireless router needs to allow the user to forward all messages to a third party webservice (this service would be able to provide reports and display monthly aggregated data).
  • The router can have built-in data aggregation and reporting for ARC. But the option to forward ARC messages still needs to be available to the user, to allow for a open standard.
This is just an idea, would be great if a standards body could come up with a patent free and open standard that implements ARC.


It would be great to have the appliance, electronics and "wifi/powerline routers" manufacturers supporting a standard like ARC with their devices.


This is just an idea I wanted to put out there. This document was created on 6 Feb 2011.




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