New digital power control system could transform your home with sensor functionality

Engineers developed a solid-state digital power management and control system for common electrical devices that could allow every household to be interconnected and communicate in real time.

By eliminating the need for transformers, magnets and relays found inside everyday items like wall outlets and replacing them with a smaller, more reliable one solid state circuit boards that are a quarter the size, those same connection points or light switches could also incorporate motion sensors, voice control, smoke detection, Wi-Fi signal boosters, energy meters and a host of other useful apps.

Based in San Francisco Amber Solutions says he’s considering a house where each electrical end becomes part of a modern, hyper-intelligent architecture; enabling a feature-rich sensor and ecosystem for energy awareness and automation directly into the entire building energy network.

While the concept of a digital home is nothing new, what is is New about this system is that it can be installed into an existing structure with minimal effort and does not require it to be incorporated in the design or construction phase. This applies to both homes and businesses.

“Solid state control of electricity is a game-changer for everything – security and control systems, circuit breakers, light fixtures, appliances, dimmers – the list goes on and on.” Amber CEO Thar Casey said Forbes.

“Through commercial implementations of our technologies into the existing electrical infrastructure of any building, any home or business can add IoT. [Internet of Things] overnight functionality by replacing existing outlets and switches with Amber compatible products. Manufacturers can now design and market optimized products with far greater capabilities right out of the box, ”said Casey.

The prototype seen in the video above was shown at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January. The socket is wireless controllable (Zigbee, Wi-Fi, BTle) with motion detection, gas detection, temperature and humidity detection, power measurement for the two outlets independently, native overcurrent (which acts as a circuit breaker) and surge protection in a standard 18 cubic inch capacity, gang box form factor.

The amber display light switch includes the features of the outlet, plus a capacitive touchscreen display, visual notification of temperature, humidity, power consumption and acts as a display panel. display for controlling other smart devices – all in the same space used to currently house an outlet or switch.

According to Casey, the company has received five patents to date and has over 31 patents pending, and it has signed agreements with five of the industry’s top manufacturers ($ 50 billion +) to develop the product.

“Imagine 20 years ago if someone told you everything a smartphone would end up doing. It would be incomprehensible. It’s the same precipice we stand on when we assess the future of home electricity. The switch or electrical outlet, the latter of which has not been modified for decades, has been limited in its potential – until now, ”said Casey.

One of the biggest and most important benefits will be better control – and therefore savings – of the electricity used in the home and on an even larger scale, in an office building as well. In addition to the new digital power control system that can help raise awareness around the home about how much electricity is actually used, Casey says the technology will have the ability to cut and save money and avoid the waste of phantom power currently.

“We can put these outlets into sleep mode where they don’t continue to charge money. There are motion sensing gadgets you can buy to plug into your power outlet that turn off if no movement is detected, but they are expensive. These devices can incorporate the same technology, or better, inside each outlet.

Casey says there’s still a lot more this new technology is capable of doing, but he can’t talk about it just yet, at this early stage of development. We are intrigued.

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