Study of Smart Homes and Appliances through a small-scale Model

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Supervisor:
Dr. Stumpf Péter Pál
Department of Automation and Applied Informatics

One of the aims of this project is to introduce currently available smart house solutions including every main feature a regular house must contain such as lighting, heating and essential network elements of intelligent houses as well as the most widespread ways to reduce energy bills, such as solar panels and domestic wind turbines. In most cases, the different opportunities are compared and their feasibility is also investigated.

In order to demonstrate how smart houses can make the residents’ lives easier, a possible smart house is designed. The design process starts with lots of sketches which have to be created keeping in mind that a smart house must be comfortable and has to make its owners’ life easier and more joyful. After selecting the best possible sketches, a smart house is modelled in a 3D computer model, based on which a small-scale house is implemented. The steps of creating the small-scale house are introduced in detail.

The scaled-down objects and devices such as an elevator, a car rotating platform, an electrically opening garage door, other electric doors and lighting are also designed using a 3D modeling software and implemented in small-scale using various lightweight aluminium rods, DC servo motors and other electronic parts. The combination of computer models and a tangible small-scale model provides a platform to test, improve, introduce and visualize new ideas as well as devices. Based on the experiences of building the scaled-down model, the computer model can be improved until a solution is found which can be implemented in real life while feasibility of the idea can be investigated in a small-scale model. This way, costs of manufacturing dysfunctional real-sized prototypes can be saved.

A small-scale dual axis solar tracker is also designed for the house, using which a lot of measurements can be done, such as observing the relationship between angle of incidence and power output, maximal power point tracking, as well as feasibility of a dual-axis tracking system.

The study also includes a few ideas, such as an automated trash-delivery cart and other opportunities, which could make our lives more joyful and comfortable, thus achieving the aim of smart houses.

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