Trade-off between Energy Consumption and Comfort Experience in Smart Buildings

  • Domen Zupančič Robotina d.o.o. and Jožef Stefan International Postgraduate School
  • Mitja Luštrek Jožef Stefan Institute, Department of Intelligent Systems
  • Matjaž Gams Department of Intelligent Systems, Jožef Stefan Institute
Keywords: consumption, comfort, smart home, multi-agent architecture

Abstract

The thermal comfort experience in conditioned environments is closely related to the indoor temperature andvaries mainly due to the dynamics of occupant state and the environmental state. The heating or cooling required to achievethe desired temperature and comfort influences the energy consumption. This article presents a multi-agent control systemthat primarily regulates thermal comfort rather than the indoor temperature. We developed this comfort regulator that basedon (i) the difference between the desired level of comfort and the current level of comfort and (ii) the difference between thecurrent temperature and the set point temperature adapts the set point temperature in order to achieve the desired comfort.An occupancy prediction algorithm and expert rules were designed to efficiently reduce unnecessary energy consumptionduring periods when the home is not occupied and the comfort experience is therefore not important. The results of experimentsare presented in a comfort/energy-consumption space. The comfort/energy-consumption space shows how the finalresult is influenced by (i) different versions of learning algorithms and (ii) different comfort threshold values. Comparingthe comfort/energy-consumption spaces for different occupancy patterns shows that the rule settings have similar impact oncontrol performance, which indicates that the rules are general. In nearly all experiments, the proposed multi-agent controlsystem assured better comfort experience with small increase of energy consumption compared to reactive control system.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5755/j01.itc.44.4.10139

Author Biographies

Domen Zupančič, Robotina d.o.o. and Jožef Stefan International Postgraduate School
Robotina d.o.o., researcher
Mitja Luštrek, Jožef Stefan Institute, Department of Intelligent Systems
Head of the Ambient Intelligence group at Jožef Stefan Institute, Department of Intelligent Systems
Matjaž Gams, Department of Intelligent Systems, Jožef Stefan Institute
Head of the Department of Intelligent Systems, Jožef Stefan Institute
Published
2015-12-18
Section
Articles