CleverGuard - Invisible protection for pensioners based on energy data

The increasing ageing of the European population not only poses greater challenges for pension funds, but also has a negative impact on the health care system. People are getting older and living longer at home. However, only very few manage to do so without support. CleverGuard offers invisible protection for senior citizens, who can enjoy a longer, more independent life within their own four walls.

Energy data and electricity profiles as a source of information

Living in a familiar environment for as long as possible - this is the wish of many pensioners. With advancing age, however, this desire becomes increasingly difficult. In order to make this possible, there are various technologies available today that allow pensioners to stay at home, but are virtually monitored. It is understandable that this is not in the interest of these people. No one wants to be monitored at every turn, not even or especially not in old age. What is needed is a solution that gives retirees all the freedom they need and at the same time offers reliable protection without violating their privacy. This is exactly what CleverGuard offers. The idea behind CleverGuard is simple: protection without causing any restrictions or inconvenience. To achieve this, the solution makes use of a previously unused option: energy data and electricity profiles. Whether making tea, listening to the radio or simply switching on the lights - all these actions have an impact on energy consumption. Switching appliances on and off creates fluctuations in the electricity profile of a flat or house. Intelligent energy meters such as those from CLEMAP are able to register these fluctuations. In combination with the CLEMAP algorithms, it is also possible to determine which appliances are currently being switched on or off. In addition, a behavioural profile is recorded, which serves as a basis for comparisons. For example, if energy consumption skyrockets every morning at 8 a.m. because the light is switched on and tea is being made, and suddenly not on one day, this indicates a possible incident. Via notification, all relevant persons such as the senior, relatives and care staff are informed that an incident may have occurred, which allows for quick action.

From a technological point of view, CleverGuard consists of an energy meter installed in the distribution box, which uses NILM technology (NILM = Non-Intrusive Load Monitoring) to monitor Load disaggregation the devices connected to the power grid. An associated notification module sends alerts to pre-defined individuals in the event of significant differences from the everyday consumption profile. This automatically sends notifications if there is a risk of an incident in the apartment or house of the person in need of care.

Invisible protection without compromise

The great advantage of CleverGuard lies in its perception: an invisible protection that respects privacy and yet provides quick help at any time, should it ever be necessary. CleverGuard enables seniors to live longer in their familiar surroundings without having to forego their protection. Relatives can rely on the continuous monitoring and know that their family members are safe at all times. Caregivers also benefit from the solution, as it eliminates the need for routine checks on people in need of care. In addition, diseases can be detected and diagnosed earlier on the basis of the data. The other big plus point of this project is its technological simplicity. Once the sensor is installed, it requires no maintenance for decades. This has a positive effect on the price and on acceptance among older people.

Europe-wide research project on behalf of the EU

The research project is led by CLEMAP, involves 2.5 million euros and is approximately half funded by the EU's Ambient Assisted Living programme. CleverGuard will be realised in a first phase in several European countries with a total of nine partners (Switzerland, Belgium, Italy, Hungary) before targeting the entire European market. The pilot phase of the project will start in the middle of this year in Lucerne together with the iHomeLab of the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts and Vicino Lucerne. Further information on the research project can be found at: https://www.cleverguard.care/.

Note: CLEMAP already offers the service described in the article to its customers. Learn more about this invisible guardian angel here.

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