Monday, December 21, 2009

Personal Energy Meter

Simon Hay has proposed "A Global Personal Energy Meter" at the University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory. The idea is that your mobile phone would track where you are and what you are doing, calculating how much energy you are using, so you can make decisions to use less (perhaps receiving some incentives to do so). This appears to be a logical extension of the tracking devices which the Cambridge Computer Lab has been experimenting with for decades (I wore one of the devices when I visited Andy Hopper in Cambridge in 1996).

As well as the formal paper there is a sixteen slide show.This is an idea worth exploring. There are obvious problems with privacy, as there were with the previous computer labs tracking devices. However, as anyone who has read the draft energy audit standards knows, the state of the art in energy measurement for carbon auditing is not very advanced. Therefore the information needed from a personal tracking device need not be very precise. Also gaps in measurements can be tolerated far more than with a security tracking badge.
Abstract. Every day each of us consumes a significant amount of energy,
both directly through transportation, heating and use of appliances,
and indirectly from our needs for the production of food, manufacture
of goods and provision of services. I envisage a personal energy meter
which can record and apportion an individual’s energy usage in order
to provide baseline information and incentives for reducing the environmental
impact of our lives. Contextual information will be crucial for
apportioning the use and energy costs of shared resources. In order to
obtain this it will be necessary to develop low cost, low infrastructure
location systems that can be deployed on a truly global scale. ...

From: A Global Personal Energy Meter, Simon Hay, Computer Laboratory, University of Cambridge, 2009.

1 comment:

Ohad said...

A personal energy meter....
This will be really great in developing nations as India where energy consumption is on the rise.