Visualization of energy consumption based on neighbourhood-level
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Our electrical grid is nearly at its maximum capacity at peak hours. Exceeding this capacity will result in an expensive expansion of the grid to prevent unstable electricity and power outage. A possible improvement is to distribute energy consumption more evenly throughout the day to unload the electricity output through the grid. This implies that the grid-users consumption pattern plays huge role. Within 2019 every household in Norway shall have Smart meters installed and operating, allowing authorized third-party actors to fetch consumption data. This thesis seeks to explore the best way to display the collected information to the consumer in such a way that it reduces electricity usage during peak load periods. A literature study and a focus group interview created the foundation to determine the context of use, user requirements, and design of such application. Findings from the background study suggested that people are willing to act eco-friendly, but often forgets or lacks knowledge and information to take measures. Further investigations shows that ease of use and money heavily influences the majority of the prospects' motivation. Also, the results of the focus group conducted, suggests that the possibility to compare own consumption with the neighborhood's with similar house category as useful. Based on the initial findings, a web application prototype was developed to evaluate the concept. The application is centered around conveying monetary cost and savings with comparison in an understandable way. A usability test was conducted to evaluate the application. A major aspect of the web application involves the possibility to compare own energy consumption with the neighborhood's energy consumption. A usability test was conducted and revealed that test participants finds the functionality of the prototype application to be useful and would consider to use it. The research process has followed the Design Science Research Methodology, and Human-centered design framework while developing and designing the application.