Home automation – Smart House
Home automation is the ability to control and automation of home appliances such as lighting, heating, ventilation, air conditioning, security, washer/dryers, ovens, refrigerators/freezers, etc. It has been around from many decades in terms of lighting and simple appliance control. Now the technology has been changed to the idea of the interconnected world, allowing full control of your home from anywhere, to become a reality.
Types of Home Automation Systems
- Power line Based Home Automation
- Wired or BUS Cable Home Automation
- Wireless Home Automation
The remote monitoring and controlling are done by using computer connected to the Internet. Remote control can also be extended to telephones and answering machines, fax machines, amateur radios and other communications equipment, and home robots such as automatic vacuum cleaners.
According to Li et al. (2016) there are three generations of home automation:
- First generation: wireless technology with proxy server, e.g. Zigbee automation;
- Second generation: artificial intelligence controls electrical devices, e.g. Amazon Echo;
- Third generation: robot buddy who interacts with humans, e.g. Robot Rovio, Roomba.
- Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC)
- Lighting control system
- Occupancy-aware control system
- Appliance control and integration with the smart grid and a smart meter
- Leak detection, smoke and CO detectors
- Indoor positioning systems
- Home automation for the elderly and disabled
- Tracking the pets movements and controlling access rights.
Home automation system is mainly implemented by using sensors, controlling devices and actuators. Sensors can be photo detectors, level sensors, IR sensors, pressure sensors, etc. Controllers may be personal computers/laptops, touch pads, smart phones, etc. Controllers are attached to the controlling devices that receive the information from the sensors, and based on the program, control the actuators. Actuators can be limit relays, switches, motors and other controlling mechanisms.
The home automation market was worth US$5.77 billion in 2013, predicted to reach a market value of US$12.81 billion by the year 2020.