Publication NumberUS 7904209
Assignees
  • Syracuse University
Filing StatusIssued Patent
US PAIR StatusPatented Case
US PAIR Status Date2011-02-16
Application Number12/041472
AvailabilityUnknown
Filing Date2008-03-03
Publication Date2011-03-08

Abstract

The present invention relates generally to a building automation system, and, more particularly, to an Internet-centric, open, extensible software and hardware framework supporting all aspects of control and monitoring of a smart building ecosphere. The present invention further relates to an “intelligent,” real-time control system capable of both autonomous process control and interaction with system users and system administrators, which is configured to accommodate functional extensions and a broad array of sensors and control devices. The system allows individuals to communicate, monitor and adjust their personal environmental preferences (temperature, light, humidity, white noise, etc.) much like they would in an automobile, via the Internet. The system is equipped with an occupancy sensor that recognizes the presence and identity of the individual. A built-in expert system can make decisions based on data from multiple sources so that the system can alter its activity to conserve energy while maintaining users' comfort.

Claims

  • 1. An environmental control system for controlling at least a first environmental control appliance and for receiving at least a first detected environmental characteristic from at least a first environmental control sensor, the environmental control system comprising: an Internet protocol communication network, wherein said at least a first environmental control appliance and said at least a first environmental control sensor are directly connected to said Internet protocol communication network; a server computer comprising a control module; and an environmental control sub-system comprising an environmental control sensor software module and an environmental control appliance software module; wherein: the environmental control sensor software module is adapted to receive the first detected environmental characteristic from the first environmental control sensor in a format of an environmental control sensor protocol, to convert the first detected environmental characteristic into a format of an Internet transmissible protocol, and to send the first detected environmental characteristic in the Internet transmissible protocol over the communication network; the control module is adapted to receive the first detected environmental characteristic in the Internet transmissible protocol from the communications network, to determine a control signal based at least in part on the first detected environmental characteristic, to convert the control signal into the format of the Internet transmissible protocol, and to send the control signal in the Internet transmissible protocol over the communications network; and the environmental control appliance software module is adapted to receive the control signal in the Internet transmissible protocol from the communications network, to convert the control signal into a format of an environmental control appliance protocol, suitable for controlling the first environmental control appliance, and to send the control signal in the environmental control appliance protocol to the first environmental control appliance to control the operation of the first environmental control appliance.
  • 2. The environmental control system of claim 1, wherein said control module further comprises: a smart building framework module; and an inference engine module; wherein: said smart building framework module is adapted to monitor status of each of said first environmental control appliance by communicating with the environmental control appliance software module and said first environmental control sensor by communicating with the environmental control sensor software module; said smart building framework module is adapted to facilitate communication between said environmental control sensor software module and said inference engine module; said smart building framework module is adapted to facilitate communication between said environmental control appliance software module and said inference engine module; and said inference engine module is adapted to implement control logic of said control module.
  • 3. The environmental control system of claim 2 further comprising a Web Services technology adapted to implement the communication between said environmental control sensor software module and said inference engine module.
  • 4. The environmental control system of claim 3 wherein the Web Services technology is adapted to implement the communication between said environmental control appliance software module and said inference engine module.
  • 5. The environmental control system of claim 1, wherein the Internet transmissible protocol is Hypertext Transfer Protocol.
  • 6. The environmental control system of claim 1, wherein said environmental control sensor protocol is an Internet transmissible protocol.
  • 7. The environmental control system of claim 1, wherein said environmental control appliance protocol is an Internet transmissible protocol.
  • 8. The environmental control system of claim 1, wherein: the environmental control sensor software module is further adapted to receive a second detected environmental characteristic from a second environmental control sensor in a format of a second environmental control sensor protocol, to convert the second detected environmental characteristic into a format of the Internet transmissible protocol, and to send the second detected environmental characteristic in the Internet transmissible protocol over the communication network; the control module is further adapted to receive the second detected environmental characteristic in the Internet transmissible protocol from the communications network, to determine a second control signal based at least in part on the second detected environmental characteristic, to convert the second control signal into the format of the Internet transmissible protocol, and to send the second control signal in the Internet transmissible protocol over the communications network; and the environmental control appliance software module is further adapted to receive the second control signal in the Internet transmissible protocol from the communications network, to convert the second control signal into a format of a second environmental control appliance protocol, suitable for controlling the second environmental control appliance, and to send the second control signal in the second environmental control appliance protocol to the second environmental control appliance to control the operation of the second environmental control appliance.
  • 9. An environmental control system, for use by at least a first user, the system comprising: a first environmental control appliance; a first environmental control sensor adapted to detect a first detected environmental characteristic in an environmental zone; a communication network; a first user profile that may be activated on a plurality of workstations, said user profile being adapted to dictate whether the first user is present in an environmental zone; a server computer comprising a control module and a first user environmental preference data comprising at least one environmental control preference corresponding to the first user; and an environmental control sub-system, adapted to be located remotely from the server computer, in proximity to the first environmental control appliance and in proximity to the first environmental control sensor, the sub-system comprising an environmental control sensor software module and an environmental control appliance software module; wherein: the environmental control sensor software module is adapted to receive the first detected environmental characteristic from the first environmental control sensor and to send the first detected environmental characteristic over the communication network; the control module is adapted to receive the first detected environmental characteristic from the communications network, to determine a control signal based at least in part on the first detected environmental characteristic, and to send the control signal over the communications network; the environmental control appliance software module is adapted to receive the control signal from the communications network, and to send the control signal in the environmental control appliance protocol to the first environmental control appliance to control the operation of the first environmental control appliance; and the control module is further adapted to control the first environmental control appliance based upon the first user environmental preference data when it is dictated by the first user profile that the first user is present in the environmental zone.