For over five years I measure the temperature in different rooms at home. Al these year I had a dashboard where I could see the temperatures in a chart. The dashboard also shows me the minimum and maximum temperature per room over a certain period. The picture below shows the dashboard.
Over the years my interest for domotica began to grow and I wanted more than just measuring the temperature. Inspired by the Bwired site, I started looking what else can be done.
I first looked into measuring my electricity usage (I don’t have gas in my home). To be able to measure this, I needed a new electricity meter, because mine was not ‘smart’. After a new smart meter was installed I started using the system of Net2Grid to measure the electricity usage. It’s a nice system which gives you a good insight in your usage. With the Energy Insight App you can even see your usage on your smart phone.
The equipment for reading information from the smart meter is connected to the P1 port of the meter. Because I wanted know what kind of port this is, I started reading about it. It seemed that the P1 port is just a serial port which can be read as such. I read about some people who where using a Netduino board to read the information from the P1 port. So I order one and started experimenting with it. See this post about how to read the P1 port using a Netduino.
Because I already was using the Net2Grid system, I didn’t use the Netduino for I while, but during the Christmas holidays I picked up the project where I left it and started extending the code for reading the information coming from the P1 port and I also rewrote the back-end part I used for my temperature measurement, so I could also send the information coming from the smart meter.
The new dashboard
Because I now can read the smart meter myself, I was also able to integrate the information in my dashboard (so I didn’t need to switch to the Net2Grid dashboard). So I started developing a new version of the dashboard. The result is shown in the picture below.
As you can see, this is a complete different dashboard. This dashboard does not only show me the temperature as the old one did, but also the power usage and the current consumption coming from the smart meter.
As you can see in the picture of the new dashboard, I also measure the light strength. This information is also coming from the Netduino by using a simple LDR for measuring the light strength. I will write a post about how this works later.
The reason for measuring the light strength is, that I want to automate my lighting. As lighting I use the Philips Hue LED lighting system. Because this system is connected to my local network and has an open API, I’m able to operate the lights programmatically. This is a project still in progress :-). But the basic idea is to switch to lights on when it gets dark en turn them off when it’s bright (all within a predefined time of day). But more about that later.