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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/I000143/1
Title: Intelligent Agents for Home Energy Management
Principal Investigator: Rogers, Professor AC
Other Investigators:
James, Professor PAB Bahaj, Professor AS Jennings, Professor N
Stanton, Professor N
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
AlertMe Drew Smith Ltd Energy Saving Trust Ltd (The)
PRI Ltd Virgin
Department: Electronics and Computer Science
Organisation: University of Southampton
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 November 2010 Ends: 31 March 2014 Value (£): 813,141
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Artificial Intelligence Building Ops & Management
Energy Efficiency
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Construction Energy
Information Technologies
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
17 Mar 2010 Transforming Energy Demand Through Digital Innov Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Meeting the challenge of cutting UK greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050, and ensuring energy security in the face of dwindling oil and gas reserves, requires a radical change in the way energy (and particularly electricity) is generated, distributed and consumed . Central to delivering this change, is the need to support domestic consumers (who have the least visibility regarding their energy use, but who generate approximately 25% of total UK carbon emissions) in both reducing their demand for energy and improving the efficiency with which they use it. This proposal will do both by applying novel artificial intelligence approaches to the development of intelligent agents that will be transformational in empowering domestic consumers to visualise, understand and manage their energy use.These home energy management agents will collect real-time data from smart gas and electricity meters, and simple low cost temperature and occupancy sensor, and they will learn both the thermal characteristics of the building in which they are deployed and the day-to-day behaviour and energy demands of the home's occupants. In the short term, these agents will provide personalised support to householders by (i) visualising, analysing and comparing energy consumption (e.g. providing itemised energy use information, performing energy audits and comparisons across similar homes), by (ii) autonomously modelling and advising householders of the potential impact of various energy saving practices, and by (iii) tracking, providing feedback and motivating progress toward energy and carbon reduction goals. Such agents will go beyond the simple energy displays of today, and will act as persuasive technologies informed by a cognitive model of behaviour change. In the medium term, they will directly interface with network enabled appliances and will actively manage the delivery of heat and the deferral of electrical loads whilst making efficient use of shared and private variable renewable generation. In doing so, they will provide autonomous and intelligent demand management, whilst satisfying the individual householders' preferences regarding comfort, cost and carbon. Finally, in the long term, these agents will integrate with electric vehicles (EV) and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEV), giving the home's occupants visibility and control of their total energy and carbon use, proactively managing electricity storage within these vehicles, and facilitating the delivery of individual carbon budgets and allowances . In essence the project will enable occupants to make appropriately relevant behaviour decisions on their energy consumption and generation, relating the impacts of these decisions on carbon emissions. Beyond the immediate confines of the home, these agents will also have a profound impact at the macro level. They will be developed with a future outlook to facilitate a smart grid in which electricity is bought and sold through short-term dynamically negotiated contracts with local, community-owned and national energy providers in response to real-time pricing and carbon intensity signals.To achieve the goals outlined above, the project brings together an interdisciplinary team comprising world leading experts in the fields of intelligent agents and multi-agent systems (School of Electronics and Computer Science), renewable energy and energy efficiency in the built environment, and human factors in the design of automated control and feedback systems (Sustainable Energy Research Group and Transportation Research Group in the School of Civil Engineering and the Environment) at the University of Southampton. The home energy management agents will be evaluated and demonstrated within two live deployments: one using an existing test-bed of 9 homes in Havant, and one using 25 homes currently undergoing a social house redevelopment programme in Southampton.
Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Impacts
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Summary
Date Materialised
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Project URL: http://www.homeenergyagents.info
Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.soton.ac.uk