CHARGR

A smart grid service concept

Tasks: Concept development, interface design, interaction design, visualization

2015

CHARGR is a spin-off idea from my master thesis. Like WATTIME it relies on a smart home which can produce its own energy from renewable sources and store them inside a house battery.
In the future these smart homes are going to be connected to the smart grid, the next generation of power grids. With this kind of infrastructure these smart homes can operate as peripheral power plants and can feed their energy into the grid to anywhere where it is needed.
CHARGR is a service concept that makes use of the described situation. The service makes it possible to transfer energy on demand from someone’s smart home to any place connected to the smart grid. All the user needs is a special charging device which can communicate with a smart power outlet. The charging device connects to the power outlet and the outlet connects to the users smart home and transfers his own energy.
So for example a tourist in a foreign city whose smartphone battery is empty can charge his battery with energy from his home without debiting others energy accounts. CHARGR is perfectly suitable as a service because in this use case two needs can be brought together: the tourist seeks a place to spend some time because he must charge his smartphone. And shops like bookstores are seeking people who spend some time inside their stores because it just takes some time to browse some books. So the tourist can first take some interesting books from the shelf and then take a seat at the charging outlet. The time he needs until his smartphone is charged he can read the books and when he leaves he eventually buys one. Bookstores but also other stores with waiting time like launderettes are ideal service stakeholders.
The user of CHARGR only needs the special charging device which does everything automatically. But optionally there is an app where the user can see how much energy is transferred from where to where. He can also manage multiple charging devices and energy sources.