Student predicts energy future!

A student has invented a tool to forecast how an individual’s energy use will change in the future. Moulay Larbi Chalal, a PhD candidate at Nottingham Trent University, used data […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

A student has invented a tool to forecast how an individual’s energy use will change in the future.

Moulay Larbi Chalal, a PhD candidate at Nottingham Trent University, used data from across 6,000 households over a 17-year period to see how people’s changing lifestyle and behavior changes their energy requirements.

He claims the date even be extrapolated up to a city-wide scale to predict changes in urban energy usage.

For example, the forecasting tool can show that the average single, non-elderly person has almost a 20% chance of finding a partner and moving in with that partner within five years. Of these new couples, 53% will go on to have a child during the same period.

Probable future energy needs can be calculated based on this data – while around 26% of those couples without children will use more than 4,000Kwh of electricity every year, the same amount of energy will also be used by as many as 35% of couples with children.

Similar calculations can be made for a huge variety of other demographics.

Professor Benachir Medjdoub, Professor of Digital Architectural Design at Nottingham Trent University, said: “It shows how we can predict the variation in residential energy usage patterns during different transitions of a person’s life.

“This could help predict and monitor the levels of energy consumed and the related carbon footprint for whole cities, allowing for a smarter management of the gas and electricity distribution network.”