Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Electricity and gas consumption at a glance

09.04.2008
People who want to save energy should always keep an eye on their consumption. The EWE Box offers customers a neat solution: It enables private households to monitor their electricity and gas consumption whenever they want – and save costs thanks to new pricing models.

Once a year, someone from the electricity or gas works comes to read the meter. Soon afterwards, the customer receives an invoice listing the power consumption for the whole year.

It does not reveal precisely how much energy the customer has used at what times or with which devices. This has been the situation in the past. In future, however, private households will always be able to check their power consumption – at all times of the day and night.

With the support of the Fraunhofer Application Center System Technology AST, scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE have developed a new solution in collaboration with Oldenburg-based energy provider EWE. It enables customers to keep track of their current electricity and gas consumption at all times. “The days of ‘stupid’ meters are over,” says ISE project manager Dr. Harald Schäffler.

The new metering technologies are intelligent: “The EWE Box is an innovative communication gateway that records and saves the readings from the electricity and gas meters and transmits them to a control center via DSL.” This metering and display method – known by experts as ‘smart metering’ – has a particular advantage: “The power provider can offer the customer individual pricing models, depending on factors such as the load, the time of day or the time of year,” explains Schäffler. A different price rate could apply in summer, for instance, when little heating is required, than in winter.

The researchers have developed a special LCD display so that users themselves can always keep tabs on their energy consumption and benefit from the various pricing models. The EWE Box constantly transmits the measured values by radio to the display, which shows the current power usage in real time. If the user switches on a ‘power-guzzling’ device, the effects can immediately be seen on the display. Also displayed are the hourly and daily totals for electricity and gas consumption, costs and CO2 emissions.

Customers can also view their stored power consumption data via a personal Internet access and receive a monthly power consumption and cost analysis plus a forecast of their probable annual energy costs in future. In this way, users are in control of their energy management themselves, and saving becomes child’s play. The system will be tested by EWE in May as part of a field test involving 400 private households in the Oldenburg area. The ISE and the AST will support and monitor the experiment and evaluate the results.

Monika Weiner | alfa
Further information:
http://www.fraunhofer.de/EN/index.jsp
http://www.fraunhofer.de/EN/bigimg/2008/rn04fo1g.jsp

More articles from Power and Electrical Engineering:

nachricht New creepy, crawly search and rescue robot developed at Ben-Gurion U
19.07.2018 | American Associates, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev

nachricht The role of Sodium for the Enhancement of Solar Cells
17.07.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung GmbH

All articles from Power and Electrical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

Im Focus: Chemical reactions in the light of ultrashort X-ray pulses from free-electron lasers

Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.

Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Metal too 'gummy' to cut? Draw on it with a Sharpie or glue stick, science says

19.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

NSF-supported researchers to present new results on hurricanes and other extreme events

19.07.2018 | Earth Sciences

Scientists uncover the role of a protein in production & survival of myelin-forming cells

19.07.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>