Thesis Topics on Energy Systems


Unless stated otherwise, all topics are offered at the Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt at the group of Prof. Wilfried Elmenreich.

Master thesis topics

  • Study: Towards an advanced metering infrastructure
    Current networks of sensors and actuators use different protocols and data formats. Semantics can be used to enhance data with meaning, to increase flexibility and enable intelligent functionalities. In this project, the student will set up a case study concerning Smart metering. The student will exploit existing implementations of the CoAP application protocol (e.g., for the Contiki or Tiny OS) to run web services on sensor nodes. To design a semantic sensor network, the student will assess possible ways to represent and transmit semantic information. Main requirements for the student are the knowledge of the C programming language and shell scripting. [Contact]
  • A semantic gateway for the home
    In this project we aim at implementing a home gateway working with the CoAP protocol. The student will use the CoRE protocol to implement a resource directory listing sensors and actuators available in the household. In addition, the student will use a semantic web framework (e.g. Jena) to enhance the gateway with a SPARQL endpoint. In this way, the gateway can offer a uniform interface to access resources and data in the domestic network. To carry out this project, the student should have extensive knowledge of object-oriented programming languages, in particular Java. [Contact]
  • Analysis of energy consumption data in households
    The goal of this project is to combine energy consumption data collected in households with other datasets (e.g. social networks) to extract models of the users and provide them with tailored services. An example may be a recommender system proposing advices to reduce the energy consumption in the household. We are looking for a student with extensive knowledge of object-oriented programming languages (e.g. Java) and basic experience with data mining. [Contact]
  • NIALM WebServiceNon-intrusive load monitoring (NILM) identifies used appliances in a total power load according to their individual load characteristics. The aim of this thesis is to build up a website which is able to import the measured power consumptions of users, disaggregate the used power profiles of appliances, share power profiles and calculate the power costs for each appliance. We are looking for a student which is fit with HTLM5 and object-oriented programming to implement on the one hand the homepage and on the other hand the load disaggregation algorithm. [Contact]
  • Performance evaluation and characterization of a photovoltaic power system in Karnten, Austria: The aim of this research is to utilize a field operation performance of a photovoltaic system under Karnten climate. The system is installed at Lakeside labs and it is consisted of a 5 kWp photovoltaic (PV) array and a DC/AC inverter. The operation performance data are recorded in order to develop accurate mathematical models for the system as well as to evaluate the productivity of the system. The annual yield factor, the performance factor as well as the capacity factor are going to be used as technical criteria. Meanwhile, the cost of energy and payback period are going to be used evaluate the feasibility of the system. MATLAB software is mainly used in this research. Basic knowledge on energy, electrical power generation and calculus is required [For further information, Please contact Tamer Khatib,

Bachelor thesis topics

  • Switchgear for RAPSim The task of this project is to add fuses, reclosers and sectionalizers to the RAPSim software. A fuse provides overcurrent protection by a wire melts when too much current flows through it. A fuse must be replaced after it burned through. A circuit breaker is an automatically operated electrical switch designed to protect an electrical circuit from damage caused by overload or short circuit. Its basic function is to detect a fault condition and interrupt current flow. In electric power distribution, a recloser,  is a circuit breaker equipped with a mechanism that can automatically close the breaker after it has been opened due to a fault. A sectionalizer detects and counts fault current interruptions by the recloser (or circuit breaker). After a pre-determined number of interruptions, the sectionalizer will open, thereby isolating the faulty section of the circuit, allowing the recloser to restore supply to the other non-fault sections.
    RAPSim (Renewable Alternativ Powersystems Simulation) is a free and open source micro-grid simulation framework for better understanding of power flowing behavior in smart microgrids with renewable sources. It is able to simulate grid-connected or standalone microgrids with solar, wind or other renewable energy sources. The proposed software calculates the power generated by each source in the microgrid and then it conducts a power flow analysis. This software is helpful for optimal placement of distributed generation units in a micro grid. If you are interested, please contact Wilfried Elmenreich,
  • Android app "Energy Meter"Current meters show the consumed energy as a 7 digit number displayed on the front of the meter casing. The goal is to develop an Android App that periodically makes a photo of the meter and extracts the value via OCR. The work can built upon existing routines for OCR, but needs to be tailored to handle possibly out of focus images and to take knowledge from previous measurements into account. [[This topic is taken, sorry]]]
  • Exploiting energy consumption information
    The power profile of households is a useful information that can be used to model users' behaviour. The goal of this project is to report about existing companies and projects that exploit energy consumption data to offer value-added services to users. The student will analyse these systems and will propose a list of design guidelines. The student can focus either on platform-related aspects (e.g. communication) or on applications and interfaces. [Contact]
  • Load disaggregation, the logical approach
    Your home has 10 devices, with the following consumption power: ... Writing a program that prints out all possible power states is easy for this. Now think of the opposite problem: you get a number of power consumption states and you should infer about the possible device configuration that is able to create the measured values. If you can solve the second problem, this Bachelor topic is for you. If you are interested, please contact Wilfried Elmenreich,

Research projects/Softwarepraktikum

  • Smart Grid Simulation: Simulation is a substantial method for research on the futures smart energy systems. Problems including power systems, energy markets and user behaviors need new simulation approaches. The "Smart Grid Simulator" is a Java software which the research group started to develop. There are plenty of possibilities for its further development in several areas.
    • Design and implementation of interfaces with other simulation software, e.g. GridLAB-D.
    • Make the results of the simulation easy access- and drawable, e.g. by use of MatLab.
    • Improve the GUI and adapt the controller to support extended functions and requirements of the simulation.
    • Implement a new idea how energy usage could be controlled and evaluate its success.
    • You should know well Java and software design.
    Advisor: Wilfried Elmenreich
    Contact: Manfred Pöchacker

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