Monday, December 1, 2014

Call for Papers Conference on Innovative Smart Grids Technologies Latin American

October 5-6-7, 2015

Hotel Radisson Montevideo, Uruguay

Radisson Montevideo (CC-BY-3.0 Rodrigo uy)
The IEEE PES Conference on Innovative SMART GRID Technologies (ISGT-LA 2015) Latin American, sponsored by the IEEE Power & Energy Society (PES) and hosted by IEEE URUGUAY SECTION and PES local CHAPTER, will be held on OCT 5, 6 and 7th, 2015.

The Conference will be a forum for the participants to discuss state-of-the-art innovations in Smart Grid technologies, to attend tutorials and Industry Panels.

Conference TOPICS are:

- Renewable Energy Sources and Smart Grid (Hydro, Tidal, Wind, Solar and Electric Vehicles, Storage technologies), Wind Integration, Resources forecast (water, wind, weather), Environmental Impacts and Climate change mitigation,

- Energy and Distribution Management Systems, Wide Area Monitoring, Control and Operation (SCADA Systems), Call Center solutions for Smart Grid

- Computational methods and optimization techniques in Smart Grids; Big Data, Massive Grid Data, Data Mining of Smart Grid, Geographic information system (GIS) technology and Smart Grid, Multi-agent Based Applications for Smart Grids

- Smart Grid Impact on Electric Power Systems (Generation, Transmission and Distribution), Grid modeling, analysis and simulation, real time and co-simulation, Stability

- Demand Response, Demand side management, Customer aspects, user behavior and Flexible Demand,

- Smart Grids Information and Communications Technologies (I.C.T): Communications, System Architecture, Operations Support System (OSS), WANs and LANs Networks, 3G/4G networking. Control and Information Systems: Cyber Security Systems, Intelligent Monitoring and Outage Management

- Power System Instrumentation and Measurements, Metering Infrastructure and Instrumentation, Smart Meters, Components Reliability and Diagnostics, System and Components Asset Management

- Power Quality, Energy Efficiency and Smart Grid, Power Electronics Devices: modeling, application, control. FACTS: flexible alternating current transmission system power electronics and Smart Grid

- Protection in Energy Systems, PMUs and Wide Area Monitoring, IEC 61850, distributed IEDs, Synchrophasors in Distribution

- Smart Grids Interoperability, Regulation and Policies, Codes, Standards, Public Policies for implementation of Smart Grids, Testing and certification

-Integration of Distributed Energy Resources, Distributed Generation Islanded Systems and Microgrids: operation, control, monitoring and technologies, Low-voltage direct current (LVDC) distribution networks

- Home and Building Automation, Smart Cities, Cross Energy-domain solutions, Smart Sensors, Convergence of Smart Grid and the Internet of Things,

- Smart Grid Projects, Field Tests, large-scale demonstrations and deployment experiences, Future trends: technologies, researches, standards, incentives, opportunities

- Smart Grid Agenda; Smart Grid Roadmaps, Smart Grid Infrastructure Investments, Planning and Budgets, Cost and Benefits Analysis, Grant Programs,

- Smart Grids and Electricity Markets, Economics and incentive Regulations for Smart Grids, Impact of Smart Grids in Regulation and Energy Pricing, Smart Grids and Sustainable Developement,

- Smart Grid Utility Assets; Smart Grid Assets Management, urban enviroment, self-healing techniques, underground grids, Smart Wires, GIS for Smar Grid,Substation Equipment and Smart Grids; Transformers, Circuit Breakers, Switches

ISGT-LA Sample Papers;

Important Dates:

March 15, 2015 EXTENDED ABSTRACT Submission Deadline
June 15, 2015 Notification of paper ACCEPTANCE
August 15, 2015 Camera-ready / FINAL PAPER Submission Deadline
October 5-6-7, 2015 Conference at Radisson Montevideo Hotel

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Evolving a Self-organizing Energy Market for Microgrids

Graphical user interface of the FREVO plugin
Andrea Monacchi and Wilfried Elmenreich went to Zurich to present their paper about a home energy market simulator at Energieinformatik '2014.
In the presented work, self-organizing behavior between prosumers is implemented at device level via market-based energy allocation solutions. The approach is implemented in a simulator extension to the open framework FREVO, which is released for open use. With the help of FREVO, artificial neural network controllers for energy prosumers are designed using an evolutionary algorithm. Minimizing individual and overall running costs enables a better use of local energy production from renewable sources, while considering residents' necessities to minimize discomfort.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Call for Papers of the Fourth IFIP Conference on Sustainable Internet and ICT for Sustainability


SustainIT 2015

Fourth IFIP Conference on Sustainable Internet and ICT for Sustainability

 2015, Madrid, Spain

All papers presented at SustainIT 2015 will be published in the IEEE Xplore Digital Library. The best paper presented at the conference will receive a Best Paper Award.

Authors of papers of particular merit will be invited to submit an extended version of their work to the Elsevier Journal of Computer Communications Journal (COMCOM).


The evolving information and communications (ICT) technologies present a unique opportunity to effect the transformation needed to move us towards the goal of sustainability by helping to reduce our carbon footprint, mitigate and adapt ill effects of climate change, reduce and repair environmental damage, provide effective disaster response and recovery, creatively manage overstressed infrastructures in crowded urban systems, and enhance use of planet friendly materials and technologies. ICT is already being integrated into many areas of our lives, such as smart management of city services, transportation, energy distribution and management, health care, etc., and this integration is expected to expand deeper and wider in the coming years and decades. Unfortunately, this ICT proliferation brings in its own challenges of increased carbon footprint, accelerating obsolescence of electronic equipment and its disposal issues, increased use of precious natural resources such as water and materials, etc. These twin problems of reducing the environmental impact of ICT and exploiting ICT for a more sustainable world form the underlying theme for SustainIT since its inception in 2010.

This year's SustainIT continues this theme by focusing on inter-disciplinary scientific challenges of enhancing the sustainability of ICT and via ICT. The goal of this conference is to bring together people from different research areas, and provide a forum to exchange ideas, discuss solutions, and share experiences among researchers, professionals, and application developers from both industry and academia.

Original papers addressing both theoretical and practical aspects of sustainability of ICT (including smart energy management) and innovative use of ICT to enhance human and societal sustainability are solicited.

TOPICS OF INTEREST include but are not limited to:

1) Sustainable communication substrates:
Energy-efficient networking technologies and architectures
Energy-efficient wired and wireless communications protocols
Cross-layer optimizations for sustainable networking
Novel standards and metrics for green communications

2) Energy-efficient operation of computing infrastructure:
Energy-efficient management of computing, storage, and network resources
Managing carbon footprint of data centers and increasing its energy efficiency
Algorithms to reduce the energy consumption of ICT infrastructure
Trade-offs between energy efficiency, Quality of Service, and reliability
Adaptation of computing and communications infrastructure to variable renewable energy supply
Emerging computing/storage technologies for energy efficient operation

3) Achieving sustainability through the application of ICT:
Application of ICT to increase the energy efficiency of smart homes, smart buildings, and smart cities
ICT for sustainable mobility, transport, and logistics
ICT for energy-efficient industrial environments and processes
ICT for smart power grids and novel data processing in smart energy systems
ICT for water distribution systems including leaks, theft, contamination, and attacks.
ICT for agriculture, food distribution/logistics, waste reduction, tracking/provenance, etc.
ICT for healthcare (health monitoring & healthy lifestyle support systems, disease detection/monitoring, assistive technologies, health care information systems, etc.)
ICT for underwater (e.g., oceanic) monitoring and communications
ICT for waste water and waste monitoring, handling and reduction
ICT in disaster monitoring, rescue and recovery, including emergency networking and exploitation of social media
ICT for monitoring and conservation of biodiversity
ICT for geohazard monitoring (e.g., landslides, earthquakes, etc.)
Crowdsourcing solutions for sustainability
Urban Sustainability

4) Practical issues in sustainable communication systems
Security and privacy in ICT applications for sustainability
Energy consumption measurements, models, and monitoring tools
Measurement and evaluation of the Internet's sustainability
Test-bed and prototype implementations of sustainable ICT systems

5) Science of Sustainability
Metrics for sustainability and their evaluation
Modeling of human behavior regarding sustainability choices (e.g., reduction in energy consumption, engagement of power management features, etc.)
Ecosystem modeling (perturbations and equilibria)


All submissions must describe original research, not published or currently under review for another workshop, conference, or journal. Manuscripts must be limited to 8 pages and must strictly adhere to the IEEE conference publication format (e.g., 10pt font, single spacing, double column) in US Letter size with all fonts embedded. Detailed instructions for manuscript preparation and submission are available on theconference website.

Papers must be submitted electronically in PDF format through EDAS.

Submission implies the willingness of at least one author to register and attend the conference to present the paper. The organizers reserve the right to exclude a paper from distribution after the conference if the paper is not presented at the conference.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Impressions from IEEE Conference on Smart Grid Communication 2014

The IEEE Conference on Smart Grid Communication 2014 was held from November the 13th to 14th in Venice. Wilfried Elmenreich, Dominik Egarter and Andrea Monacchi from our group participated at this event.

The conference was organized in 5 different symposia:
  • Communications and Networks to enable the Smart Grid
  • Cyber Security and Privacy
  • Architectures, Control and Operation for Smart Grid, Microgrids and Distributed Resources
  • Demand Response and Dynamic Pricing
  • Data Management and Grid Analytics

Dominik presented his paper Load Hiding of Household's Power Demand, (Dominik Egarter, Christoph Prokop, Wilfried Elmenreich) in the session on "Cyber Security and Privacy".

Andrea gave a talk about his paper GREEND: An Energy Consumption Dataset of Households in Italy and Austria (Andrea Monacchi, Dominik Egarter, Wilfried Elmenreich, Salvatore D’Alessandro, Andrea M. Tonello) in the "Data Management and Grid Analytics" session.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Quick intro to the Open Source Renewables Alternative Power System Simulation (RAPSim)

In a previous blogpost, we introduced RAPSim, a free open source power system simulator with a graphical interface. RAPSim was developed at the Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt within the Lakeside Labs project Smart Microgrid. The main architect of RAPSim, Manfred Rabl-Pöchacker now produced video giving an ultra-fast introduction to the tool. Got three minutes? Here is the video:

Interested? RAPSim can be freely downloaded at
If you want to learn more about RAPSim, here is a paper about RAPSim:

M. Pöchacker, T. Khatib, and W. Elmenreich. The microgrid simulation tool RAPSim: Description and case study. In Proceedings of the IEEE Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Asia (ISGT-ASIA'14), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 2014. IEEE.

Monday, November 3, 2014

How the Smart Grid will Improve our Live blesses us with a happy video about the Smart Grid: "3 Ways the Smart Grid Improves How We Live". Although the video is a bit uncritical on the challenges and implementation costs, the video is interesting and summarizes expected advantages for the customer in a nutshell: By the way, the three things addressed in the video are reliability, cost-savings, and flexibility.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

YoMo - The Open-Source Smart Meter Platform

YoMo board with electronic components
We introduce our recently developed smart metering board called YoMo (You only meter once). The board is an extension board compatible to Arduino boards. YoMo offers features such as:
  • measuring active, reactive, apparent power, current, and voltage
  • switching loads up to 20A,
  • adjustable sampling frequency and 
  • open-hardware design and open-source firmware

YoMo PCB before soldering
The smart meter platform, provided as open hardware, is designed with a connector interface compatible to the Arduino platform, thus opening the possibilities for smart meters with flexible hardware and computation features, starting from low-cost 8 bit micro controllers up to powerful single board computers that can run Linux. The metering platform features a current transformer which allows a non-intrusive installation of the current measurement unit. The suggested design can switch loads, offers a variable sampling frequency, and provides measurement data such as active power, reactive and apparent power. Results indicate that measurement accuracy and resolution of the proposed metering platform are sufficient for a range of different applications and loads from a few watts up to five kilowatts.

YoMo is further described in this paper

C. Klemenjak, D. Egarter and W. Elmenreich. YOMO - The Arduino based Smart Metering Board. Energieinformatik'14, Zurich, Switzerland, 2014

Further information can be found at the YoMo project homepage:

Thursday, August 7, 2014

IEEE SmartGridComm Student Video Competition - Prize $500

We invite students from around the globe to create a short video (duration of max. 3 minutes), presenting their vision or ideas on smart grid technologies, practices and systems. This year we focus on Smart Grid 3.0, the user centric smart grid. We welcome short videos which present original visions and ideas in one of the following categories:
  1. Collaborative Prosumers. Imagine new solutions, business models and applications for collaborative prosumers, the users that produce and consume energy! What solutions can you think for users with rooftop solar panels, local storage from their electric vehicles or battery banks that are all connected in a microgrid or a virtual power plant?
  2. Smart Grid Applications. Imagine a new marketplace of web and mobile applications for the smart grid. This include energy analytics, automation algorithms and demand response, renewable energy forecast, electric vehicles, etc. You can view smart grid as an application development platform.
  3. Electric Vehicles. What is the role of the electric vehicle in new smart grid entities such as microgrids, virtual power plants? How do you imagine vehicle to vehicle (V2V) and/or vehicle to grid (V2G) applications?
Think, imagine, wonder!
  • Think about the smart grid and how it has already been applied
  • Imagine new ideas that will enrich service offerings to utility customers and will engage them
  • Wonder of new techniques that will enhance the participatory role of end users in the network 
Turn your ideas into a video
Create a video of max. 3 minutes long, explaining your views about the smart grid and focus on your personal innovative solution and idea. Be clear, sharp and inspiring! imagine a better world that smarter and cleaner power grids could offer. 
Submission Instructions
  1. Create the video
  2. Upload your video to YouTube
  3. Send to the following information:
  • ​Your name
  • University affiliation
  • Contact information (mailing address and email)
  • Video title
  • Video link
Selection Process
  1. Approval of video. Videos will be screened by a jury for compliance with the scope of the competition as outlined above.  
  2. Approved videos. The approved videos will be posted on the IEEE SmartGridComm website, where visitors will be able to vote.  
  3. Top 3 videos. The top 3 voted videos will be selected.  
  4. Winning video. The winning video will be decided by the jury, out of the 3 top voted videos. It will be announced on the IEEE website on the date specified and will receive the $500 prize!
Note that only student are eligible to participate. 
Important Dates
  • Video submission deadline: 1 September 2014 10 September 2014
  • Online voting period: 10 September - 17 October 2014
  • Annoucement of top 3 videos: 31 October 2014
  • Annoucement of Top Winner: 5 November 2014 
Video Competition Committee
Dr. George Koutitas, Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Thessaly, Greece
Prof. Stan McClellan, Ingram School of Engineering, Texas State University, USA
Link to Previous Video Competitions
You can see the Video Contests Nominations of previous years at the following links:

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Load Disaggregation Paper accepted in IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement

Recently, the paper "PALDi: Online Load Disaggregation via Particle Filtering" got accepted for publication in the journal IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement.

Egarter, D., Bhuvana, V. P. & Elmenreich W. (2014). PALDi: Online load disaggregation via particle filtering. IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement, pages 467 - 477, 64(2).

Smart metering and fine-grained energy data are one of the major enablers for the future smart grid and improved energy efficiency in smart homes. By using the information provided by smart meter power draw, valuable information can be extracted as disaggregated appliance power draws by non-intrusive load monitoring (NILM). NILM allows to identify appliances according to their power characteristics in the total power consumption of a household, measured by one sensor, the smart meter.
In this paper we present a NILM approach, where the appliance states are estimated by particle filtering (PF). PF is used for non-linear and non-Gaussian disturbed problems and is suitable to estimate the appliance state. On/off appliances, multi-state appliances, or combinations of them are modeled by hidden Markov models (HMM) and their combinations result in a factorial hidden Markov model (FHMM) modeling the household power demand. We evaluate the PF-based NILM approach on synthetic and on real data from a well-known dataset to show that our approach achieves an accuracy of 90% on real household power draws.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

GREEND: An Energy Consumption Dataset of Households in Italy and Austria

Some days ago, we got notice that our paper "GREEND: An Energy Consumption Dataset of Households in Italy and Austria" is accepted at the IEEE SmartGridComm 2014. The SmartGridComm 2014 will take place in Venice, a fascinating and marvelous Italian city, on November 3-6, 2014.

GREEND: An Energy Consumption Dataset of Households in Italy and Austria

Andrea Monacchi
, Dominik Egarter, Wilfried Elmenreich, Salvatore D’Alessandro, Andrea M. Tonello

Home energy management systems can be used to monitor and optimize consumption and local production from renewable energy. To assess solutions before their deployment, researchers and designers of those systems demand for energy consumption datasets. In this paper, we present the GREEND dataset, containing detailed power usage information obtained through a measurement campaign in households in Austria and Italy. We provide a description of consumption scenarios and discuss design choices for the sensing infrastructure. Finally, we bench- mark the dataset with state-of-the-art techniques in load disaggregation, occupancy detection and appliance usage mining.
An authors' version is available in arXiv:

The GREEND dataset is publicly availble, donwload the newest version at

Monday, July 14, 2014

Load Hiding of Household's Power Demand

Our publication "Load Hiding of Household's Power Demand" is accepted at the IEEE SmartGridComm 2014. The SmartGridComm 2014 will take place in Venice, a fascinating and marvelous Italian city, on November 3-6, 2014.

Load Hiding of Household's Power Demand, Dominik Egarter, Christoph Prokop, Wilfried Elmenreich

With the development and introduction of smart metering, the energy information for costumers will change from infrequent manual meter readings to fine-grained energy consumption data. On the one hand these fine-grained measurements will lead to an improvement in costumers’ energy habits, but on the other hand the fined-grained data produces in- formation about a household and also households’ inhabitants, which are the basis for many future privacy issues. To ensure household privacy and smart meter information owned by the household inhabitants, load hiding techniques were introduced to obfuscate the load demand visible at the household energy meter. In this work, a state-of-the-art battery- based load hiding (BLH) technique, which uses a controllable battery to disguise the power consumption and a novel load hiding technique called load-based load hiding (LLH) are presented. An LLH system uses an controllable household appliance to obfuscate the household’s power demand. We evaluate and compare both load hiding techniques on real household data and show that both techniques can strengthen household privacy but only LLH can increase appliance level privacy.
An authors' version is available in arXiv:


Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Call for Papers 1st Workshop on Middleware for a Smarter Use of Electric Energy


MidSEE 2015

1st Workshop on Middleware for a Smarter Use of Electric Energy

in conjunction with NetSys 2015, Cottbus, Germany


Smart energy meters are increasingly installed in newly constructed buildings worldwide, as regulated by, e.g., the European Union's Energy Services Directive. Their combination with the vision of an Internet of Things, in which billions of embedded devices will continually monitor the environment, enables the fine-grained monitoring of household and office energy usage and hence a large range of novel services. While many such functions have been devised so far (e.g., advice how to save energy or the disaggregation of electricity bills), these solutions commonly rely on the availability of hard- and software systems by a single manufacturer. Interoperability, including the potential to integrate new energy metering devices, is mostly unsupported due to the wide variety of (non-compatible) standards and communication protocols.

This workshop provides a platform to present current research activities in communications and processing of energy consumption data, with its primary focus on electric energy usage. The scope of the workshop includes contributions that address the integration of energy metering equipment from different manufacturers into a single middleware system which operates on a building level, as well as novel means to collect, process and visualize these data. Accepted papers will not only present novel research results in these domains, but also comprise an evaluation in which their merits are assessed.

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:
  • Novel energy metering hardware designs and experiences
  • Data collection and command distribution protocols for energy  management systems
  • Middleware systems for energy data, including novel local data processing algorithms
  • Control of alternative energy sources to increase their production efficiency
  • Innovative tools to model and visualize energy expenditure and production
  • Sensing and actuation of electrical loads
  • Privacy and security in energy management middleware systems
  • User interfaces for energy display, management and control


Authors are invited to submit papers of up to 6 pages in IEEE two-column format. Submissions must be original and should not have been published previously or be under consideration for publication while being evaluated for this workshop. Accepted papers will be published in the IEEE Xplore Digital Library. More details about the ubmission process can be found on the website.


Submission:   Sep. 26th, 2014
Notification: Nov. 17th, 2014
Camera Ready: Dec. 10th, 2014
Workshop:     Mar. 12th, 2015


Andreas Reinhardt, The University of New South Wales, Australia
Christian Renner, Universität zu Lübeck, Germany
Delphine Christin, University of Bonn & Fraunhofer FKIE, Germany


Matteo Ceriotti, University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany
Alexander De Luca, LMU München, Germany
Paul Dunphy, Newcastle University, UK
Wilfried Elmenreich, Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt, Austria
Stefan Fischer, Universität zu Lübeck, Germany
Hannes Frey, University of Koblenz-Landau, Germany
Stefan Katzenbeisser, TU Darmstadt, Germany
Marco Ortolani, University of Palermo, Italy
Oliver Parson, University of Southampton, UK
Daniele Puccinelli, SUPSI, Switzerland
Christian Steger, TU Graz, Austria
Volker Turau, TU Hamburg-Harburg, Germany
Sebastian Zöller, TU Darmstadt, Germany

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The Renewable Alternative Power System Simulator - RAPSim

An open simulation software for Micro Grids

It is not necessary to stress all the challenges that come allong with wide range integration of renewables into the power grid at this article. You easily find this somewhere else, in this blog or at another source in the web. But I want to focus your attention on a tool that can help to deal with this challenges and work torwards solutions. It is a lot on matching climate dependent production with the personal demand which is currently noticed only in average. The various influences on residential load profiles are diverse and include weather conditions, availability of other resources, personal habits and also social phenomenas. This variaty is a reason why Marija Ilic speaks of just-in-time and just-in-place services in the conntext of Smart Micro Grids. 

Developing of or researching on such services requires a flexible simulation tool with possibly high usability. This is exactly what RAPSim is aiming at. RAPSim has been developed at the Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt within the Lakeside Labs project Smart Microgrid and was presented in front of interested audience at the ISGT Asia - 2014 conference in Kuala Lumpur in May 2014. Since then the software project is downloadable for free at

Connected Smart Grid Objects 

The simulation field is a lattice where the user designs a scenario by placing different "grid objects", e.g., houses, wind turbines, PV panels, etc. Each of the objects can have a model which does all the inner-object calculations. Algorithms handle grid-wide interactions. User-defined models can extend  algorithms for the grid and/or models for the grid objects. RAPSim provides the interface with following functions:
  • A graphical interface to create the intended scenarios and to control the simulator functions.
  • Functions to save and load simulation scenarios in a generic xml format.
  • A time thread that models time of day and day of the year and handles up to minute resolution.
  • Generation of output files in csv-format. Object parameters can be selected to be written into a file at each time step.
  • Weather simulation which can be done via stochastic models or simulated by measured data.
  • Topological grid analysis that collects objects of the same bus in a list and aggregates their parameter values.
  • Administration of algorithms for grid-wide calculations.
  • Administration of object specific models that can be easily implemented by the user.
The software is written in Java and provided with the source code so that it can be imported into a Java IDE such as eclipse. The development of the software is still ongoing. Try it out and give us feedback by adding a comment or sending a ticket to helps us to further improve it. Please spread the news about the tool, while we will do the best on our part so that onces RAPSim may become a synonym for rapid simulation in the field of mirco grids.
Once more here the link to the sourceforge page.

Publications on RAPSim (with links to fulltext PDF):

M. Pöchacker, T. Khatib, and W. Elmenreich. The microgrid simulation tool RAPSim: Description and case study. In Proceedings of the IEEE Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Asia (ISGT-ASIA'14), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 2014. IEEE.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Workshop on Human Centered Energy Management

1st Interdisciplinary Workshop on Human Centered Energy Management
to be held from 7th to 11th of July 2014
at Lakeside Science & Technology Park, Klagenfurt, Austria.

An inter-faculty research field “Energy Management and Energy Technologies”, staffed by academics from a wide range of disciplines, has recently been established at the Alpen-Adria University Klagenfurt (AAU Klagenfurt). Research efforts focus on energy management and energy innovation, networked and de- central energy systems. Together with the Faculty of Technical Sciences (TeWi), the Faculty for Management and Economics (WiWi) and the Faculty of Interdisciplinary Studies (IFF), this new research area will be further developed in cooperation with external partners such as the Lakeside Park.

The Lakeside Park is a platform for cooperation between enterprises and university institutions in the information and communication technology (ICT) sectors. A place of interdisciplinary research and development, training, production and services. The focus of the Lakeside Park is on selected topics of information and communication technology and complementary technologies such as energy systems. In the Interreg IV projects “Smart Energy” and “Efficient, Effective, Smart” the Lakeside Park establishes inter-regional contacts to strengthen collaborative research and development. Therefore, the Lakeside Park and the AAU introduce this novel interdisciplinary workshop with focus on “Human Centered Energy Management”.
Lakeside Park Klagenfurt with a view to the Wörthersee

Human Centered Energy Management

To ensure an efficient production, supply and consumption of energy, it is necessary to introduce novel technologies. Energy monitoring units, new smart control and managing techniques shall improve energy efficiency in the smallest entities of the common power grid – the Smart Building with its inhabitants and its neighborhood. In that respect the individual human being plays a crucial role for energy management tasks. On the one hand it is necessary to improve the energy efficiency of the costumer’s home to reduce energy consumption and costs. On the other hand also the decrease of environmental pollution by optimal utilization of energy resources is a major task of future energy systems.

The proposed workshop “Human Centered Energy Management” takes up these tasks and tries to identify problems and solutions for human centered energy management tasks in an interdisciplinary manner.

Format and Objectives

The aim of the workshop is to give regional experts, such as local professors and young researchers of the AAU, the opportunity to discuss and elaborate ideas with world-wide experts and to introduce and to discuss further ideas in an interdisciplinary setup. Therefore, participants with academic backgrounds and an interest on novel smart energy management systems as well as companies and research institutes are welcome to present and to discuss their research tasks and ideas.

The workshop will have a dedicated “industry day” providing the companies a platform to introduce their problems and to elaborate possible solutions and ideas with experts in the field of energy systems from different disciplines. The general format of the workshop lasts one week with key-speaker inputs and group work with discussions and presentations. Therefore, the event provides an excellent platform for scientific exchange, networking, establishment of international collaboration and the initiation of joint research projects.

Addressed Topics:

  • ICT solutions and approaches for smart home management and systems for integrated energy management.
  • Integration of smart and legacy appliances, renewable energy sources and storage systems in buildings to improve energy efficiency and awareness of inhabitants.
  • Identification, modeling and simulation of energy systems and human behavior
  • Energy data analysis and feedback approaches and behavior influencing information systems
  • Economics and law aspects of human centered energy managements systems in respect to smart homes, smart metering and energy data analysis as well as for renewable energy production and storage systems.
  • Market and business models for ICT-based energy services designed to improve the recent power grid and homes.
For more information about the workshop and how it is possible to participate, please contact

Friday, May 23, 2014

Modeling Solar Radiation

In our tutorial at the 2014 IEEE Innovative Smart Grid Technologies - Asia conference, Tamer Khatib and I covered the application of machine learning techniques for energy applications, in particular for modeling solar radiation. In the first part we explored meta-heuristic search algorithms and envisioned their application for designing distributed, self-organizing control systems using evolutionary algorithms. We provide an open-source software tool, FREVO, to conveniently apply this approach of finding the proper configuration of a local agent.

In the second part, we targeted the problem of solar radiation modeling. After stepping through different classical modeling approaches, we presented the possibility of using artificial neural networks to learn the correlation of input parameters such as latitude, longitude, temperature, humidity, month, day, hour to predict global and diffuse solar radiation. Experiments show that this method can achieve a high accuracy compared to existing models.


Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Is fusion power an option?

In his TED talk plasma physicist Michel Laberge talks about the state of the art of energy production by nuclear fusion and presents an idea for a new type of nuclear reactor that could produce cheap energy.

There are two types of energy production by nuclear power, fusion and fission. All current productive nuclear power plants are based on the fission technology, which comes with the risk of thermal runaway meltdown and lots of health risks from nuclear waste.
The other type, fusion, is worth a look though. Currently there are no fusion power plants that gain more energy than is used for running the process. However, since fusion processes only take place under high temperatures, a fusion process would stop under a breach of the containment field which makes it less dangerous than fission - at least if you are not in the immediate vicinity of the reactor when this happens. Fusion power will also produce more short-term radioactive material, which will be dangerous for "only" 300 years. In contrast, current nuclear fission power plants produce material that is active for thousands of years.
Still too dangerous? Then let's have the fusion reactor installed 150 million kilometers away in space. It's called the sun.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Energiewende - the Game

"Energiewende" is a computer game about the transition of our energy system from fossil fuels to renewable and sustainable energy sources. The game was developed by Manuel Herold, Matija Kucko, Andrea Monacchi, John N. A. Brown, and Wilfried Elmenreich as contribution to the CROSMOS GameJam. At this event teams had to develop a computer game to a topic just revealed at the contest in just two days - 2014 the topic was related to the services of Stadtwerke Klagenfurt. 

Energiewende - the game
The game Energiewende let's you try out the strategic and tactical aspects of an electrical energy system that is mostly powered by renewable energy sources. Unlike a coal power plant, photovoltaic or wind power plants cannot save fuel in times of low load for using it later. Therefore, it is necessary to plan the distribution and placement of power plants well according to the expected power demands of their users - in the game they are modeled as houses with an energy consumption behavior of typical households. After placing power plants and transmission lines, the game features a real-time mode, where your system is simulated throughout three phases of a day (night/morning, daytime, evening). In case there is not enough energy in one phase, you must prevent a blackout (otherwise you loose the game) by balancing the grid. This is done by turning off devices in the houses. But be aware - user might not like this, especially if you turn off a device the user was about to use right now. A "complain-o-meter" is showing the aggregated dislikings of the users - once the complain-o-meter runs over, the game is lost.
Thus, one learns also about the typical consumption of devices and their potential for balancing the grid. The method shown in the game called demand response is currently a frequently discussed method for the future smart grid.

Got everything? Try out the game by clicking the image above. Have fun!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Call for Papers IEEE SmartGridComm 2014

CALL for SPECIAL SESSION PROPOSALS: Deadline March 2, 2014
CALL for PAPERS: Deadline April 20, 2014

The IEEE International Conference on Smart Grid Communications (SmartGridComm) 2014 will be held in Venice, Italy, at the Hilton Molino Stucky Hotel on  November 3-6, 2014. The program will include workshops, technical sessions, keynote talks from industrial leaders and renowned academics, panel discussions, and expositions. It will be centered on all aspects of smart grid communications covered by the symposia:

1. Communications and Networks to Enable the Smart Grid
2. Cyber Security and Privacy
3. Architectures, Control and Operation for Smart Grids, Microgrids and Distributed Resources
4. Demand Response and Dynamic Pricing
5. Data Management and Grid Analytics

Thematic Workshops will be held on November 3, 2014.

The program will be completed with a number of social events that will allow the participants to enjoy exclusive networking opportunities and the beauty of the marvelous historical city of Venice.


The conference will include special sessions on highly specialized topics reporting technical trends and breakthroughs within the scope of IEEE SmartGridComm 2014. Special sessions will be part of each symposium technical program. Special sessions are organized at the initiative of one or more individuals, who must adhere to the procedures published in the Call for Special Sessions.

Important Dates

Deadline for special session proposal: March 2, 2014
Notification of proposal acceptance: March 9, 2014
Submission deadline for special session papers: April 20, 2014
Final notification of session and papers acceptance: July 12, 2014
Camera ready paper submission: August 4, 2014
Author registration: August 4, 2014


Prospective authors are invited to submit original contributions (standard two column IEEE format, up to six pages) on all aspects of smart grid communications covered by the five conference symposia. Submission guidelines can be found in the Call for Papers.

Important Dates

Paper submission deadline: April 20, 2014
Notification of acceptance: July 12, 2014
Camera ready paper due: August 4, 2014
Author registration deadline: August 4, 2014