Home automation boosts energy efficiency

VTT has, together with its European partners, launched a three-year project to develop a platform which makes it possible to add energy-saving applications into one's home, almost as simply as by putting a sticker on a door. The overall goal of the POBICOS project is to produce and test technology that will simplify the development and deployment of opportunistic computing applications to a considerable degree.

Today, the full cooperation potential of the current low-level technology remains unexploited due to the inability to program such object collections in a straightforward way.

The technology to be developed will enable programmers to develop portable applications that can be deployed, in a simple way, and harness the resources available in different operational settings.

Application Pill

The application is packaged in a deployment unit called Application Pill, which the user activates at any point in time. As a result, the software spreads the application's micro-agents to the objects with the suitable resources found in the environment.

Such functionality could be important in many different application areas and could play a particularly crucial role in boosting application development for the industrial players which provide the facilities and appliances.

Customised for home automation

The project will especially focus on customising the platform for the area of home and building automation, where such technology could play a particularly crucial role in reducing energy consumption.

The hardware devices with the POBICOS middleware and indicative proof-of-concept applications will be deployed and tested in a bioclimatic building using various sensors and actuators.

The sensors measure key environmental parameters, such as temperature, humidity and luminosity, and the actuators feature controllable elements.

Regular objects may include e.g. blinds, windows, air-conditioning units, lighting and refrigerators equipped with sense-compute-actuate embedded nodes.

VTT Coordinates the project

VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland acts as coordinator for the POBICOS project. Other partners include WUT Warsaw University of Technology (Poland), CERETETH Center for Research and Technology Thessaly (Greece), Accenture Technology Labs (France), SAE Automation, s.r.o. (Slovakia) and CRES Center for Renewable Energy Sources (Greece).

The budget of the project totals EUR 3.2 million, of which EUR 2.3 million is EC funding.


Additional information

VTT is an impartial expert organisation. Its objective is to develop new technologies, create new innovations and value added thus increasing customer's competencies. With its know how VTT produces research, development, testing and information services to public sector and companies as well as international organisations.