Multi-Objective Optimal Scheduling Framework for HVAC Devices in Energy Efficient Buildings

Authors: Nilotpal Chakraborty, Arijit Mondal and Samrat Mondal

Abstract: The worldwide energy consumption has been growing in aggregate at a tremendous rate, and a majority of the same is due to Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning (HVAC) loads in urban buildings. With the help of the recent advances in energy management and optimization techniques, the operations and functioning of these devices can now be managed and controlled efficiently for an improved energy consumption scenario and thereby reducing cost. In this paper, we propose a multi-objective optimal scheduling framework based on Johnson’s elementary circuit finding algorithm for controlling HVAC devices, specifically for buildings that require continuous thermal comfort maintenance. Two primary objectives addressed in this work are: minimizing power fluctuation and maximizing thermal comfortability of the users. We use standard comfortability indices to quantify thermal comfortability. To reduce the computation time, we also propose two intelligent improvement schemes that prune the exponential search space of Johnson’s algorithm. Furthermore, a new greedy scheduling algorithm has been proposed to obtain near-optimal solutions efficiently. All the proposed approaches have been studied in a simulated environment depicting a real-world scenario to evaluate their efficiency and effectiveness for practical implementations, including a comparative analysis with Karp’s minimum mean cycle algorithm in this problem set-up.

Publishing Date: Jul 2019

Published in: IEEE Systems Journal