WO2015113622A1 - System and method for dynamically obtaining time-of-use electricity pricing information in smart grid networks - Google Patents

System and method for dynamically obtaining time-of-use electricity pricing information in smart grid networks Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2015113622A1
WO2015113622A1 PCT/EP2014/051904 EP2014051904W WO2015113622A1 WO 2015113622 A1 WO2015113622 A1 WO 2015113622A1 EP 2014051904 W EP2014051904 W EP 2014051904W WO 2015113622 A1 WO2015113622 A1 WO 2015113622A1
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WO
WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
household appliance
electrical household
task
electrical
programmed
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/EP2014/051904
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Ovunc Doruk Izgen
Bulent Efecik
Original Assignee
Arcelik Anonim Sirketi
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Publication date
Application filed by Arcelik Anonim Sirketi filed Critical Arcelik Anonim Sirketi
Priority to PCT/EP2014/051904 priority Critical patent/WO2015113622A1/en
Publication of WO2015113622A1 publication Critical patent/WO2015113622A1/en

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    • GPHYSICS
    • G05CONTROLLING; REGULATING
    • G05BCONTROL OR REGULATING SYSTEMS IN GENERAL; FUNCTIONAL ELEMENTS OF SUCH SYSTEMS; MONITORING OR TESTING ARRANGEMENTS FOR SUCH SYSTEMS OR ELEMENTS
    • G05B15/00Systems controlled by a computer
    • G05B15/02Systems controlled by a computer electric
    • GPHYSICS
    • G05CONTROLLING; REGULATING
    • G05BCONTROL OR REGULATING SYSTEMS IN GENERAL; FUNCTIONAL ELEMENTS OF SUCH SYSTEMS; MONITORING OR TESTING ARRANGEMENTS FOR SUCH SYSTEMS OR ELEMENTS
    • G05B2219/00Program-control systems
    • G05B2219/20Pc systems
    • G05B2219/26Pc applications
    • G05B2219/2642Domotique, domestic, home control, automation, smart house
    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y02TECHNOLOGIES OR APPLICATIONS FOR MITIGATION OR ADAPTATION AGAINST CLIMATE CHANGE
    • Y02BCLIMATE CHANGE MITIGATION TECHNOLOGIES RELATED TO BUILDINGS, e.g. HOUSING, HOUSE APPLIANCES OR RELATED END-USER APPLICATIONS
    • Y02B70/00Technologies for an efficient end-user side electric power management and consumption
    • Y02B70/30Systems integrating technologies related to power network operation and communication or information technologies for improving the carbon footprint of the management of residential or tertiary loads, i.e. smart grids as climate change mitigation technology in the buildings sector, including also the last stages of power distribution and the control, monitoring or operating management systems at local level
    • Y02B70/32End-user application control systems
    • Y02B70/3208End-user application control systems characterised by the aim of the control
    • Y02B70/3241Domotics or building automation systems
    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y04INFORMATION OR COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGIES HAVING AN IMPACT ON OTHER TECHNOLOGY AREAS
    • Y04SSYSTEMS INTEGRATING TECHNOLOGIES RELATED TO POWER NETWORK OPERATION, COMMUNICATION OR INFORMATION TECHNOLOGIES FOR IMPROVING THE ELECTRICAL POWER GENERATION, TRANSMISSION, DISTRIBUTION, MANAGEMENT OR USAGE, i.e. SMART GRIDS
    • Y04S20/00Systems supporting the management or operation of end-user stationary applications, including also the last stages of power distribution and the control, monitoring or operating management systems at local level
    • Y04S20/20End-user application control systems
    • Y04S20/22End-user application control systems characterised by the aim of the control
    • Y04S20/227Domotics or building automation systems

Abstract

The present invention relates to a method for operating an electrical household appliance, said electrical household appliance comprising an RF receiver for receiving an FM radio data signal and an RDS decoder, said method for operating an electrical household appliance comprising the steps of receiving an FM radio data signal encoded with a time-of-use electricity pricing information message from a given source, extracting RDS data from the FM radio data signal, determining whether any current programmed operational tasks exist during the period which the current time-of-use electricity price as obtained from said extracted RDS data is above a certain level and taking a preconfigured action in the manner to minimize electrical consumption during peak electrical demand periods.

Description

SYSTEM AND METHOD FOR DYNAMICALLY OBTAINING TIME-OF-USE ELECTRICITY PRICING INFORMATION IN SMART GRID NETWORKS

The present invention relates to a system and method for operating a plurality of electrical household appliances, by which pricing information in a smart grid network is communicated to the electrical household appliances through the Radio Data System (RDS).

To reduce peak electrical demand during the high cost periods, demand response regulations are proposed in order for enabling customers to reduce consumption during high cost periods. To this end, time-of-use pricing information is dynamically communicated to the costumers and smart devices in the home shift the consumption to off-peak periods.

System overloads can therefore be better managed by motivating the customers to change their electricity consumption habits in response to dynamic prices of electricity. In this regard, prices of electricity are typically increased during high demand periods, and decreased during low demand periods. Therefore, a given user is expected to be motivated to run the dishwasher at an off-peak time due to the economic benefit.

Household appliances such as for instance those having rotary machines, i.e. laundry treatment machines, drawing a relatively higher amount of power on a non-continuous basis should receive dynamic pricing information in order for shifting the consumption to lower cost periods. The time-of-use pricing information should therefore be communicated to every single domestic appliance in order for the same to adjust its electrical consumption.

Among others, a prior art publication in the technical field of the invention may be referred to as US2012306661, which discloses a smart home network comprising a plurality of appliances, each of which with a unique radio frequency identification tag. The smart home network further comprises a plurality of power outlets, each of which has a unique ID. The power outlets of the smart home network are capable of detecting the RFID tag and measuring the operational parameters of the appliances. The power outlets are further coupled to a central controller. The central controller receives operational parameters of the appliances from the power outlets, constructs a real time model of the smart home and forwards analytical results to a display terminal.

The method of operating an electrical household appliance according to the present invention is advantageous in that individually each electrical appliance dynamically receives time-of-use pricing information of electricity and takes necessary measures for minimizing its consumption during periods with high prices. Minimizing the consumption can be realized either by directly shifting the time period at which the operational task is to be performed, such as washing clothes, or changing the operational mode such that a similar alternative operational task is performed, drawing slightly less power from the mains.

The present invention provides a system and method for operating an electrical household appliance as provided by the characterizing features defined in Claim 1 and 5.

Primary object of the present invention is to provide a system and method for operating an electrical household appliance, by which domestic power consumption is regulated based on the dynamic price of electricity.

The present invention proposes a method for operating an electrical household appliance, the appliance comprising a radio frequency (RF) receiver and a Radio Data System (RDS) decoder. An FM radio data signal encoded with a time-dependent electricity price message as broadcast by a utility company is received by the appliance to be processed to extract RDS data. The RDS data with the time-dependent price information can reveal that a current or shortly programmed operational task is performable during an increased cost high demand period. In this case, said current or shortly programmed operational task can be postponed to a decreased cost low demand period or the operational mode of the appliance can be changed such that a similar alternative operational task having a lesser power consumption rate can be performed. If the appliance is configured to complete its programmed task irrespective of the electricity pricing information, an audio and/or visual indication is generated to notify the user that the task can be performed later during off-peak periods.

Accompanying drawings are given solely for the purpose of exemplifying a system and method for operating an electrical household appliance, whose advantages over prior art were outlined above and will be explained in brief hereinafter.

The drawings are not meant to delimit the scope of protection as identified in the claims nor should they be referred to alone in an effort to interpret the scope identified in said claims without recourse to the technical disclosure in the description of the present invention.

Fig. 1 demonstrates a flow diagram representation of the method for operating an electrical household appliance according to the present invention.

According to the present invention, an electrical household appliance, such as for instance a washing machine, can be controlled by performing a specific set of system operation functions. Typically, a user can initiate a washing program at a given time of the day. Depending on the selection, the washing program may involve several cycles such as washing, rinsing and spin-drying cycles.

According to the present invention, a microcontroller of the washing machine uses a preloaded look-up table to determine the power profile of each specific set of system operation functions. For example, while a first specific set of system operation functions may have a power profile with a certain power consumption rate, a second specific set of system operation functions may have a better power profile, i.e. having a lesser power consumption rate. To this end, it is to be noted that if a first specific set of system operation functions is programmed at a time during increased cost high demand periods, the appliance may either postpone the requested operation to the next lower demand period or run an alternative second specific set of system operation functions. For example, the washing machine may only apply washing and rinsing cycles and postpone the spin-drying cycles to be performed during the off-peak time. Likewise a refrigerator can postpone defrosting operation or slightly change regular operating temperature during high demand periods. The decision as to which specific set of system operation functions is viewed as an alternative to a certain specific set of system operation functions is made by the user while configuring the appliance.

Alternatively, an electrical household appliance can be configured to stop its operation and remain in standby mode until the received time-of-use pricing information reveals that the price is below a certain level.

According to the present invention, pricing information in a smart grid network is communicated to the electrical household appliances through the Radio Data System (RDS). RDS is a communication protocol used to send small amount of digital information using regular FM radio broadcast. It was originally intended at providing program information and traffic information to non-stationary radios by small packets on the FM subcarrier in the range of 87.5MHz to 108.0MHz. It is to be noted that RDS is a one-way communication channel involving no special authentication methods. As such, authentication of the source broadcast by the utility companies should be ensured by the household appliances, which dynamically receive electricity prices such that only authenticated broadcasts are to be processed. The electronic control board of the household appliance using the RDS network according to the invention therefore comprises an FM (Frequency Modulation) radio signal receiver and an associated RDS decoder to decode the encrypted broadcast of the utility companies. Security can be ensured over the RDS network by means of certain protocols among others (such as BiBa, a one-time signature and broadcast authentication protocol). RDS decoding can be done in software only.

According to the present invention, it might be cases where the user is expected to set a parameter or carry out a certain required action. For instance, the appliance, although configured to complete its programmed task irrespective of the electricity pricing information, can generate an indication in the meaning that the programmed task can be stopped to be performed later during off-peak periods. Such an indication can continuously be provided while the programmed task is being executed. Upon a respective intervention by the user, the task can be stopped to be performed later on.

According to the present invention, an indication LED can light up yellow or red depending on the situation. For instance, when the user is expected to make a decision on the ongoing task, the indication LED can light up red and available options can be presented to the user on the front panel of the appliance. On the other hand, the indication LED can light up yellow at a time if only updated information is available, for informational purposes. Such updated information comprises the current operational status of the appliance in respect of the time-dependent pricing information. For instance, a percentage value can be presented to the user, in the meaning that a certain percentage of the selected washing program was performed during the lower cost period.

An audio and/or visual indication is generated by the appliance in case the user is expected to set a program parameter or carry out a certain required action or in case updated information in respect of the operational status of the appliance is available.

In an embodiment of the invention, said indication means is an indication LED lighting in different colors in cases where a first or second type of indication is generated. Alternatively or additionally, an indication means as an audio indication signal generator is provided.

In a nutshell, the present invention proposes a method for operating an electrical household appliance, said electrical household appliance comprising a wide area radio frequency (RF) receiver for receiving an FM radio data signal and an RDS decoder, said method comprising the steps of receiving an FM radio data signal encoded with a time-of-use electricity pricing information message from a given source, extracting RDS data from the FM radio data signal, determining whether any current programmed operational tasks exist during the period which the current time-of-use electricity price as obtained from said extracted RDS data is above a certain level and taking a preconfigured action in the manner to minimize electrical consumption during peak electrical demand periods.

The receiver of the invention is designed so as to be receiving radio frequency (RF) signals transmitted over long distances, whereby a wide area covered by the RF transmission is reachable. The receiver can typically be compatible with transmitters for FM radio, AM radio, digital radio and terrestrial television.

In a further embodiment of the invention, said step of taking a preconfigured action further comprises the step of postponing a programmed operational task by said electrical household appliance, so as to stop its operation and remain in standby mode until the current time-of-use electricity price as obtained from said extracted RDS data is below a certain level.

In a still further embodiment of the invention, said step of taking a preconfigured action further comprises the step of changing the operational mode such that a similar alternative operational task is performed, said similar alternative operational task being determined based on a preloaded look-up table indicating the power profile of each specific set of system operation functions in association with an operational task.

In a yet still further embodiment of the invention, in the event that said appliance is configured to complete its programmed task irrespective of the electricity pricing information, said method further comprises the step of continuously generating an indication while the programmed task is being executed, said indication meaning that the programmed task is stoppable to be performed later, during off-peak periods.

The present invention further proposes an electrical household appliance comprising an RF receiver for receiving an FM radio data signal and an RDS decoder. Said electrical household appliance receives an FM radio data signal encoded with a time-of-use electricity pricing information message from a given source, extracts RDS data from the FM radio data signal and determines whether any current programmed operational tasks exist during the period which the current time-of-use electricity price as obtained from said extracted RDS data is above a certain level. If so, said electrical household appliance either postpones a programmed operational task or changes the operational mode such that a similar alternative operational task is performed.

In a yet still further embodiment of the invention, said electrical household appliance comprises an audio and/or visual indication means operable to continuously generate an indication during the operation of the appliance in the event that said appliance is configured to complete its programmed task irrespective of the electricity pricing information.

In a yet still further embodiment of the invention, said electrical household appliance is a washing machine, drying machine, combo washing/drying machine, dishwasher or a refrigerator. It is to be noted that the general approach of the invention is readily applicable to other domestic appliances as well, such as vacuum cleaners, cooking equipment, conditioning units, microwave ovens, kitchen appliances etc.

The user can therefore configure each domestic machine to act in a certain way, i.e. either to postpone a programmed operational task or to change the operational mode such that a similar alternative operational task is performed. If a certain appliance is configured to complete its programmed task irrespective of the electricity pricing information, it generates an indication in the meaning that the programmed task can be stopped to be performed later during off-peak periods. The indication remains visible or periodically audible during the time period the ongoing programmed task is being performed.

It is hence to be noted that the efficient approach adopted by the present invention provides a practical way of automatically operating a plurality of appliances in the home without necessarily intervening in the process each time new time-of-use pricing information is broadcast.

Claims (10)

  1. A method for operating an electrical household appliance, said electrical household appliance comprising an RF receiver for receiving an FM radio data signal and an RDS decoder, said method for operating an electrical household appliance comprising the steps of receiving an FM radio data signal encoded with a time-of-use electricity pricing information message from a given source, extracting RDS data from the FM radio data signal, determining whether any current programmed operational tasks exist during a period which the current time-of-use electricity price as obtained from said extracted RDS data is above a certain level and taking a preconfigured action in the manner to minimize electrical consumption during peak electrical demand periods.
  2. A method for operating an electrical household appliance as in Claim 1, characterized in that said step of taking a preconfigured action further comprises the step of postponing a programmed operational task by said electrical household appliance, so as to stop its operation and remain in standby mode until the current time-of-use electricity price as obtained from said extracted RDS data is below a certain level.
  3. A method for operating an electrical household appliance as in Claim 1, characterized in that said step of taking a preconfigured action further comprises the step of changing an operational mode such that a similar alternative operational task is performed, a similar alternative operational task being determined based on a preloaded look-up table indicating power profile of each specific set of system operation functions in association with an operational task.
  4. A method for operating an electrical household appliance as in Claim 1, characterized in that, in the event that said appliance is configured to complete its programmed task irrespective of electricity pricing information, said method further comprises the step of continuously generating an indication while the programmed task is being executed, said indication meaning that the programmed task is stoppable to be performed later during off-peak periods.
  5. An electrical household appliance operable according to the method as in Claim 1, said electrical household appliance comprising an RF receiver for receiving an FM radio data signal and an RDS decoder characterized in that;
    said electrical household appliance receives an FM radio data signal encoded with a time-of-use electricity pricing information message from a given source, extracts RDS data from the FM radio data signal and determines whether any current programmed operational tasks exist during a period which the current time-of-use electricity price as obtained from said extracted RDS data is above a certain level.
  6. An electrical household appliance as in Claim 5, characterized in that, in the event that any current programmed operational tasks exist during the period which the current time-of-use electricity price as obtained from said extracted RDS data is above a certain level, said electrical household appliance either postpones a programmed operational task or changes an operational mode such that a similar alternative operational task is performed.
  7. An electrical household appliance as in Claim 5, characterized in that said electrical household appliance comprises an audio and/or visual indication means operable to continuously generate an indication during operation of the electrical household appliance in the event that said electrical household appliance is configured to complete its programmed task irrespective of electricity pricing information.
  8. An electrical household appliance as in Claim 7, characterized in that said indication means is an indication LED lighting in different colors in cases where a first or second type of indication is generated.
  9. An electrical household appliance as in Claim 7, characterized in that said indication means is an audio indication signal generator.
  10. An electrical household appliance as in Claim 5, characterized in that said electrical household appliance is a washing machine, drying machine, combo washing/drying machine, dishwasher, or a refrigerator.
PCT/EP2014/051904 2014-01-31 2014-01-31 System and method for dynamically obtaining time-of-use electricity pricing information in smart grid networks WO2015113622A1 (en)

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PCT/EP2014/051904 WO2015113622A1 (en) 2014-01-31 2014-01-31 System and method for dynamically obtaining time-of-use electricity pricing information in smart grid networks

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Citations (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20110118895A1 (en) * 2008-07-07 2011-05-19 Bulent Efecik Household Appliance
US20110270452A1 (en) * 2010-05-03 2011-11-03 Battelle Memorial Institute Scheduling and modeling the operation of controllable and non-controllable electronic devices
EP2407838A2 (en) * 2010-07-16 2012-01-18 General Electric Company Appliance incorporating load selectivity without employment of smart meters
US20120306661A1 (en) 2011-05-31 2012-12-06 State Grid Corporation Of China (Sgcc) Apparatus for Smart Home Network

Patent Citations (4)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20110118895A1 (en) * 2008-07-07 2011-05-19 Bulent Efecik Household Appliance
US20110270452A1 (en) * 2010-05-03 2011-11-03 Battelle Memorial Institute Scheduling and modeling the operation of controllable and non-controllable electronic devices
EP2407838A2 (en) * 2010-07-16 2012-01-18 General Electric Company Appliance incorporating load selectivity without employment of smart meters
US20120306661A1 (en) 2011-05-31 2012-12-06 State Grid Corporation Of China (Sgcc) Apparatus for Smart Home Network

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