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Monitoring electricity production and consumption

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  • Monitoring electricity production and consumption

    Hi all,

    After getting solar panels a couple of years ago I wanted get insight into the electricity production, and also the household electricity consumption. Likewise I wanted to know how much electricity was consumed by our heat pump.

    I have written some software that helps me to get the information I want. The software is free and is written with the following in mind:
    Main goal:
    * Reduce waste, and by doing that save a penny or two.
    Other goals:
    * My measurement data stays at home with me (no cloud storage and no transfer via the Internet)
    * Increase my awareness of the household consumption of electricity
    * Increase my awareness of the production of electricity, from e.g. solar panels
    * Leverage the smart meter installed by my electricity utility if possible
    * Use standards for smart meter communication. E.g. DLMS/COSEM for electricity meters

    Here is a browser screendump:

    Some of the features are:
    * Day, month and year profile graphs
    * Configurable graph series
    * Relay control based on per phase electricity export
    * Calculate consumption/production between two dates
    * "Guage" view showing latest readings
    * MQTT publishing (for further processing)

    If you are interested you can get the software by following the dropbox links below.

    PowerView version 0.0.26. The main application with database and browser views:

    PowerLog version 0.0.21. Application communicating with smart meters and relays:

    Each of the zip files contain documentation for the applications.

    Feel free to write if you have questions or comments.

    Sign. FiNN

  • #2
    Fine for the global view. If you really want to eliminate waste, the consumption of each load needs to
    be compared to the work it is doing. Then attack each issue. This could easily run into a hundred
    different devices. Bruce Roe


    • #3
      As Bruce writes, nice for an overview, but the devil is in the details. Nice to measure stuff, but to what end ? Measure/record inputs and outputs at individual points will show where power comes from and where it goes, when and how. If you really want to increase consumption awareness, you can get everything you have and more simply by reading meters/recording inputs/outputs and using a few kill- a - watt meters. Records are avail. for most array monitoring at 5 min. intervals. 15 min. draw/feed is usually avail. from the POCO.

      Not bustin' on you, but while what you have done may look pretty, it's been done by many others and is nothing special.


      • #4
        Hi Bruce and J.P.M.

        Thanks for your comments.

        I see your point that ideally every input/output should (eventually) be measured in order to fully comprehend the household usage - and based on that eliminate/reduce waste.

        My software doesn't support that use case at the moment. Technically it does support multiple measurement devices but there is no kill- a- watt meter integration, and the user interface likely has stuff to be desired related to viewing or working with kill- a- watt measurements.

        However, what the software does support is to switch on a load when the solar panels export power to the electricity grid and switch off the load when the power export drops. This is also a form of reducing waste, and depending on the billing model it may be possible to save a little.
        (For example the billing model I am under requires payment for transport of energy both from and to the electricity grid. If I can consume the solar power when it is there, then I can save the transport.)

        Anyway. Thanks for your input. I'll consider the use case for future development.

        Sign. FiNN