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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 468097, 11 pages
Research Article

Electricity Usage Scheduling in Smart Building Environments Using Smart Devices

1Department of EECS, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48105, USA
2Department of Computer Engineering, Global Top 5 Research Institute, Ewha University, Seoul 120-750, Republic of Korea

Received 12 August 2013; Accepted 2 October 2013

Academic Editors: P.-y. Nie and S. Yu

Copyright © 2013 Eunji Lee and Hyokyung Bahn. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


With the recent advances in smart grid technologies as well as the increasing dissemination of smart meters, the electricity usage of every moment can be detected in modern smart building environments. Thus, the utility company adopts different price of electricity at each time slot considering the peak time. This paper presents a new electricity usage scheduling algorithm for smart buildings that adopts real-time pricing of electricity. The proposed algorithm detects the change of electricity prices by making use of a smart device and changes the power mode of each electric device dynamically. Specifically, we formulate the electricity usage scheduling problem as a real-time task scheduling problem and show that it is a complex search problem that has an exponential time complexity. An efficient heuristic based on genetic algorithms is performed on a smart device to cut down the huge searching space and find a reasonable schedule within a feasible time budget. Experimental results with various building conditions show that the proposed algorithm reduces the electricity charge of a smart building by 25.6% on average and up to 33.4%.