Home > Civil > NESTEC 2022 PAPER: IoT-Based Extension Socket For Power Outage Management

NESTEC 2022 PAPER: IoT-Based Extension Socket For Power Outage Management

ABSTRACT

Electrical installations found in buildings include wall outlets and extension sockets, which serve as hubs for directly connecting electrical appliances safely. This paper presents the design of an IoT (Internet of Things)-Based Extension Socket for the management of power outages through the provision of a real-time or near real-time update to an electricity consumer about the status (outage or restoration) of electric power in the house where the power outage management system is installed. The system presented in this paper makes use of a NodeMCU ESP8266 development board, a 13 Ampere two-gang socket, a Lithium-Ion (Li-ion) battery, relays, the Arduino Integrated Development Environment (IDE), and the Blynk Android application. The system monitors power status and notifies its user (electricity consumer) of both power outages and restoration. Its 13 Ampere two-gang socket serve as extension sockets to enable the electricity consumer to maximize the usage of electricity after restoration through virtual switching of electrical appliances connected to these sockets. This control (switching) and monitoring is done wirelessly over-the-internet through Blynk, installed on the Android phone of the electricity consumer, irrespective of time and location.

Author: Adeleke Wasiu Ademola

Supervising Lecturer: Engr. Shereefdeen O. Sanni

Keywords: Blynk, Electricity Consumer, Extension Socket, IoT, NodeMCU, Power Outage

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IoT-Based Extension Socket For Power Outage Management

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30 thoughts on “NESTEC 2022 PAPER: IoT-Based Extension Socket For Power Outage Management

  1. Can the system presented in this paper be used by someone who does not have much understanding of technology ?

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    1. Yes. 

      The system has no complexities involved in its setup for use in homes. The Android application (Blynk) used for the control and monitoring of the system also has no special operations needed.

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  2. Yes. 

    The system has no complexities involved in its setup for use in homes. The Android application (Blynk) used for the control and monitoring of the system also has no special operations needed.

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  3. The IoT Based extension socket has been built to help domestic consumers address the problem of power outage and restoration through their sockets. However, there can be multiple sockets for multiple appliances at home. The problem with this is that if a household consumer installs one of the products, would it be expected to install multiple IoT hardware in several parts of their rooms to ensure its effective usefulness and efficiency? The household will be faced with the challenges of purchasing multiple IoT devices and as well maintaining them on several devices through the Blynk. Thus, how can all sockets in a household be harmonized for effective control without the duplication of the IoT hardware and software systems at home?

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    1. As you have pointed out, the system presented in this paper is for use in a wall outlet in a house. However, in the case of multiple sockets in a house that need to be IoT-based, that can be achieved in a number of ways without the need to duplicate the complete IoT hardware but by duplicating microcontrollers and microcontroller wireless communication modules. The number of sockets in different places in the house that can be IoT-controlled from a phone can be over 20. 
      For this kind of system, I can deploy any of the microcontrollers in the AVR ATmega series or ATtiny85 microcontroller, combined with IoT hardware like the ESP8266 module (instead of NodeMCU ESP8266), and finally with microcontroller wireless communication modules like NRF24L01 (a wireless transceiver module that can be used for communication between microcontrollers).

      In this case, the master/slave communication protocol will be used. The master will house the IoT hardware used, a microcontroller and a microcontroller wireless communication module. All other slaves will house a microcontroller and a microcontroller wireless communication module.

      From my practical experience, NRF24L01 is useful for this kind of task because it is cheaper and can accommodate master/slave communication with up to 3,215 nodes. Also, NRF24L01 can operate wirelessly up to 100 meters without an antenna and over 500 meters with an antenna.

      For control from an Android phone, Blynk can accommodate up to 100 widgets, implying a good number of sockets can be controlled with a single Android application.

      I hope I have been able to answer your question, sir.

      Thank you for taking your time and asking this great question. I appreciate you. 

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      1. Thank you so much for your analysis. Definitely it can be used in homes with 25 streams of sockets or even in big capacity buildings like hotels etc……. Great

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        1. I am glad you found my analysis useful. Thank you sir

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  4. How possible can the IoT-based extension sockets help households to be safe and energy cost-conscious? By being integrated into the prepaid meters used in Nigerian households such that they can be used to turn on or off the meters in a bid to be mindful of their energy consumption outside or inside their homes

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    1. Although this IoT-based extension socket can be useful for managing energy consumption in Nigerian households, it cannot be integrated into the prepaid meters.

      An example of how the IoT-based extension socket can be useful for saving energy costs is: I will be absent at home, and I only need to keep my refrigerator working for a few hours in my absence, but the refrigerator thermostat is not sufficient for such timing. Meanwhile, I am cost-conscious about running my refrigerator for the whole period I will be absent.

      I can just check if there is a power outage/restoration from Blynk on my phone, and switch on and off my refrigerator at my desired time while I monitor the refrigerator’s working period.

      There are a number of prototype energy meters capable of doing what you have described here.

      The cost of purchase of the energy meter you described will be higher in Nigeria. This is because there will be a need for more electronic components and electrical devices like contactor.

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  5. Although this IoT-based extension socket can be useful for managing energy consumption in Nigerian households, it cannot be integrated into the prepaid meters. 

    An example of how the IoT-based extension socket can be useful for saving energy costs is: I will be absent at home, and I only need to keep my refrigerator working for a few hours in my absence, but the refrigerator thermostat is not sufficient for such timing. Meanwhile, I am cost-conscious about running my refrigerator for the whole period I will be absent. 

    I can just check if there is a power outage/restoration from Blynk on my phone, and switch on and off my refrigerator at my desired time while I monitor the refrigerator’s working period. 

    There are a number of prototype energy meters capable of doing what you have described here. 

    The cost of purchase of the energy meter you described will be higher in Nigeria. This is because there will be a need for more electronic components and electrical devices like contactor.

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  6. You tried with your work, indeed iot is very important in a country where majority carelessly left electrical appliances on and went out without thinking of the danger of electrical spark that may cause burning.
    My question on this work are;
    1. When the terminal is switched off will their be a notification for the restoration and taken of power?.
    2. Since it is connected using LAN WiFi can it be sensitive when someone is far distance from it?
    3. What’s the economical advantage of the socket?.
    4. Can the socket be automatically turned off through the internet when someone is far away from it?

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    1. Thank you for the commendation, sir.

      1. I assume what you mean by terminal is the wall outlet. When the wall outlet is switched off, the system will report that as a power outage. This is because the system monitors the power supply available through a wall outlet.

      2. The system is connected to the internet via WiFi. Hence, the system is independent of proximity as long as it is able to communicate with the Android application through the internet.

      3. Part of the economic advantage of the system is that it can be utilized as a conventional extension socket through its physical control while it can also be controlled virtually through the internet, making it a dual-controlled system for a single purchased system. 

      4. Each of the sockets can be automatically turned off through the internet, implying the extension socket is turned off. 

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  7. Your paper is amazing and straight to the point. But I have a few questions.

    You mentioned that switching is done over the internet..

    1. What is the data consumption rate to run electricity in a day by an average Nigerian, also in a month and then annually..

    2. Is the software only for homes? Or offices and industries inclusive. If industries and offices are inclusive – what is the efficiency of the product able to run a homes, offices and industries simultaneously.

    3. What happens to the set of Nigerians who don’t have access to smart phones..and internet connection.

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    1. Thank you for the beautiful comments.

      1. Running electricity does not require data, but it requires an electrical energy unit. However, the electricity consumption rate for individuals differs based on their lifestyle. 

      2. Yes, the system presented in this paper is for home use only, but similar and powerful ones can be designed for other purposes, including offices and industries. 

      3. The system presented in this paper is internet-based; therefore, there are limitations in its use. However, the system can be designed in another way to work with text messages and phone calls. 

      This is not only in Nigeria, but in some other parts of the world, some people have limited or no access to smartphones and internet connections.

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  8. Thank very much for the research, it will really helpful.
    But sir, if I can understand this very well, the connection will be through LAN WIFI, what if the user is in a far distance to house, will it still be connect?

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    1. Thank you for your question. 

      Yes, the IoT-Based Extension Socket will still be connected. This is because the system is using the internet connection of the WiFi it is connected to. And as long as the WiFi is still within the perimeter and has internet connectivity, the system stays connected.

      Meanwhile, the system does not connect to any WiFi internet found within its perimeter. It connects to the WiFi internet based on the user’s preference.

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  9. You are greatly weldone for the research, and I hope it will very helpful.
    But sir, if can understand this clearly, since the Iot extension socket will be using LAN WIFI for connection, what if the user is in a far distance to house, will it be connected?

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    1. Thank you for your question. 

      Yes, the IoT-Based Extension Socket will still be connected. This is because the system is using the internet connection of the WiFi it is connected to. And as long as the WiFi is still within the perimeter and has internet connectivity, the system stays connected.

      This means that, for an always connected system, a home WiFi internet or a nearby WiFi internet that is always not being moved should be used for the system. It does not require a dedicated WiFi internet connection because it is just like every other device in homes and offices that can connect to the internet through WiFi.

      Meanwhile, the system does not connect to any WiFi internet found within its perimeter. It connects to the WiFi internet based on the user’s preference.

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  10. Wow, this seems unbelievable if not for the power of technology and a great thanks to you for the relentless effort to delve into the world of technology. Well done

    My question now is: does it work directly with the phone’s wifi or there will be a need to install a particular app?

    And secondly, is it cost-friendly in terms of data and can it be used by everyone

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    1. Thank you for that compliment, sir.

      1. Yes, the system can work with a phone’s WiFi, but when a phone is moved later to a far location not within the range of the system’s WiFi, the WiFi internet connection of the system will be terminated during such a period.

      It is advised that the host of the WiFi internet not always be moved to avoid termination of the connections.

      2. The system uses less data because it only transfers data without any graphical content.

      3. It can be used by everyone. It does not require technical experience to connect or operate both the hardware system and the Android application.

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  11. This sounds great if implemented I hope. My question is these.
    1. After the implementation of IoT into more than one extension sockets in the same building, how is it easy to control them at the same time on a single App since they are all having the same IoT set up. For instance, switching socket A off and leaving socket B ON controlling them on the App?
    2. Does over current not have effect on the IoT in the socket that can cause burn out?
    3. And how easy is it rectification if fault applies?

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    1. Thanks for the compliment.

      1. In the case of the implementation of IoT into more than one extension socket in a house, controlling all of these sockets using a single Android application is easier to do using a master/slave communication protocol for all the sockets. Through this, no interference in the communication of each extension socket with the Android application can occur. 
      2. The protection circuit for the electrical appliances to be connected to the sockets was not included in this work. However, it was included in the recommendation for future design.
      3. In the event of a fault, the system is not difficult to troubleshoot because it does not contain complex electronic circuitry.

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  12. This sounds great if implemented I hope. My question is these.
    1. After the implementation of IoT into more than one extension sockets in the same building, how is it easy to control them at the same time on a single App since they are all having the same IoT set up. For instance, switching socket A off and leaving socket B ON controlling them on the App?
    2. Does over current not have effect on the IoT in the socket that can cause burn out?
    3. And how easy is it rectification if fault applies?

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  13. By default, all appliances are switched off when a user is going out. What is the relevance of your system in that case?

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    1. Thank you for your question sir.

      I designed the system to continue to monitor power status and control the electrical appliances connected to it irrespective of the the presence or absence of the user in the house. The system is relevant in the cases of people who need to have virtual control of the electrical appliances in their house without physical access to the electrical appliance or the point of connecting the electrical appliance to the electricity during power restoration. An example is a user who does not want the refrigerator in the house to operate (or be connected to electricity) the whole time he/she is absent from the house, but at the time he/she wants, say for example when he/she is about to leave the workplace for home.

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  14. Adeleke Wasiu Ademola
    1. How does your system manage power outage using IOT, state procedure
    2. How the you develop the web application for the IoT IN THE Cloud

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    1. 1. The system manages power outage through supervision (monitoring) of the power outages and restoration through the wall outlet where it is installed.
      The procedure is as follows:
      When power is restored, the system senses the power status through a voltage divider in the power supply unit, using the D0 pin of ESP8266. This detection through the D0 pin of ESP8266 is taken as logic level HIGH and is forwarded to the Blynk mobile application through the Blynk server, as long as the system is wirelessly connected to the internet through WiFi and the phone is connected to the internet through any possible means. The HIGH logic level as sent to Blynk application makes the power detector widget in the Blynk application show GREEN, indicating power restoration, and also makes the Blynk application send a push notification of “POWER RESTORED” to the notification bar of the Android phone. During power restoration, the battery inside the system charges to always put the system at a ready state of sending and receiving signal from the mobile application. After this power restoration, the two sockets on the system can switch ON and OFF virtually based on the user’s past or current preference.

      When power outage occurs, the D0 pin senses this as logic level LOW, and the ESP8266 sends this to the Blynk application as well. This logic level LOW makes the power detector widget in the Blynk application show BLACK, indicating power outage, and also a push notification of “POWER OUTAGE HAS OCCURRED” is sent to the notification bar of the Android phone. This will automatically switch OFF the sockets on the system.
      The two sockets on the system are controlled through relays.

      2. The system uses a mobile application (Blynk) which I developed it through Blynk IoT platform (an IoT platform for developers and businesses with free and paid plans). The Blynk platform allows Android and iOS application development (through drag and drop) for connecting electronic hardware projects to the smartphones, making the hardware projects IoT based.

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    2. Thank you for your questions sir.

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  15. 1. What are the system requirements needed to develop the proposed solution?

    2. You claim to have applied simple and less expensive concepts to develop the system, what is the cost implication for developing the entire system, and, how relevant is the system to the average Nigerians who mostly turn off their home appliances whenever they are away from home?

    3. Why the choice of a Web application against a mobile application for the proposed solution?.

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    1. Thank you for your time sir.

      1. The system requirements needed to develop the proposed solution is at least Windows 7 as regards desktop applications, and an Android OS version of 4.2 and above
      2. The cost as at the time of designing the system is an approximate of N12,000 including the logistics cost of the materials then.
      One of the relevancy of the system to an average Nigerian is that it gives its user the chance to control their use of electric power when power is restored, especially in their absence from home where they have no means of knowing if the power supply in the house is in outage or restoration. An average Nigerian will switch off their home appliances due to reasons like uncontrollable means of electricity consumption of their appliances in their absence, which this system can help them to manage properly.
      3. It was mentioned in the paper that the Blynk application was installed on the Android phone, implying the application is a mobile application.

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