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IoT-Centric Data Driven Distributed Control of Active Buildings Energy Systems S&T69

  • School: School of Science and Technology
  • Study mode(s): Full-time / Part-time
  • Starting: 2022
  • Funding: UK student / EU student (non-UK) / International student (non-EU) / Fully-funded


NTU's Fully-funded PhD Studentship Scheme 2022

Project ID: S&T69

The digitalisation of the energy sector can support the evolution towards net-zero carbon emission by 2050 as a key goal of the UK. Digital technologies can bring opportunities and challenges by changing the way energy is produced, transmitted, traded, and used. Globally, buildings are accountable for about 40% of carbon emissions and in most countries, they consume around 40% of the produced energy. As a result, to cope with the energy crisis, any solutions provided in this regard would have to consider the energy issues of buildings.

The Active Buildings (ABs) concept is an intelligent integration of renewable energy sources like Photovoltaic and wind units, different types of loads and storage devices, EVs, and digital technologies. ABs can work standalone as a self-sufficient energy entity or can connect with the other ABs in a district and trade energy via the network. They have the potential of interacting with local as well as national level energy grids.

An energy system like the one in an AB could be alternatively described as a group of agents that interact to provide a reliable and low-cost service to the consumers. So, multi-agent system (MAS) approaches can support this framework for both modelling and control.

The Internet-of-Things (IoT) makes available a low-cost and highly effective tool for remote monitoring and control, without the need for centralised control and management systems, which is a well-suited solution to be used in MAS of the ABs to make them enable to face the goals such as minimum operation cost, flexibility provision, power-sharing, and P2P transactions.

This project is inspired by the aforementioned energy systems transition. It has the following unique features that are not only of importance from the academic point of view but also is a challenge for industrial practitioners:

  1. Using a systematic literature survey on the state-of-the-art of the IoT-centric distributed control system, this project explores the challenges and research gaps from both theoretical and industrial angles;
  2. The project explores the design of IoT/antenna/wireless subsystems via the latest advancements of 5G and LoRaWAN;
  3. A IoT-centric data-driven distributed control design for AB energy systems is then provided by considering the cost, reliability, resilience, security and privacy issues;
  4. It will develop a laboratory setup on top of the flagship £1.6m Smart Wireless Innovation Facility (SWIFt) of DoE that enables the researchers, businesses and policymakers to study the different aspects of the proposed solution.

The supervisory team consist of Dr Vahid Vahidinasab (NTU), Stuart Fenton (SWIFt), Ivan Marjanovic (SWIFt) and Mohammadreza Khosravi (SWIFt).

School strategic research priority

This project aligns with the Imaging, Materials and Engineering Centre (IMEC), the Smart Wireless Innovation Facility (SWIFt) and Sustainable Engineering research themes.

Entry qualifications

For the eligibility criteria, visit our studentship application page.

How to apply

For guidance and to make an application, please visit our studentship application page. The application deadline is Friday 14 January 2022.

Fees and funding

This is part of NTU's 2022 fully-funded PhD Studentship Scheme.

Guidance and support

Download our full applicant guidance notes for more information.

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