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Towards the utilization of cost-effective off-the-shelf devices for achieving energy savings in existing buildings

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of 2020 IEEE 10th International Conference on Intelligent Systems
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 26 Feb 2020
Publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
Event10th IEEE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS IS'20: Methodology, Models, Applications in Emerging Technologies - St. Constantine & Helena Resort, Varna, Bulgaria
Duration: 26 Jun 202028 Jun 2020


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The optimization of energy usage, improvement of energy efficiency, and lowering the carbon footprint are today’s hot topics in many fields of research. Research shows that in many countries the cooling and heating of buildings can consume significant amounts of energy. For example, in Finland the heating of buildings uses over a quarter of the total energy produced. Furthermore, most of the older, existing buildings lack any means of measuring indoor conditions and are rarely equipped with systems capable of adequately controlling the conditions within working or living environments. Commercial products do exist for monitoring larger buildings or building complexes, but these tend to be quite expensive and in many cases are targeted for use in newer, so-called “smart buildings”, and may not be directly applicable for retrofitting into older buildings.
This paper presents an ongoing research study that aims to use cost-effective, off-the-shelf components for measuring indoor air quality with the ultimate goal of utilizing the collected data for optimizing energy usage in existing building stock while preserving good living and working conditions.
The paper introduces the overall system architecture and describes the components used in implementing the sensor system. The use of the system is illustrated through two use cases: a university classroom and an apartment building used for eldercare. The requirements that were observed for the system as well as the experiences and challenges faced in designing, implementing, and installing the system in real-life locations are discussed in this paper.