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Managing Energy-Harvesting Environmental Monitoring Systems Open Access


Other title
Environmental Monitoring
Energy Management Strategy
Energy Harvesting
Energy Management
Arctic Weather Station
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Watts, Asher G.
Supervisor and department
Wyard-Scott, Loren (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Musilek, Petr (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Examining committee member and department
Reformat, Marek (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Khabbazian, Majid (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Musilek, Petr (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Wyard-Scott, Loren (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Software Engineering and Intelligent Systems
Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Science
Degree level
Data collection is difficult in remote locations due to limited access and scarce resources. To power environmental monitoring equipment, and allow it to operate independently of maintenance and infrastructure, energy can be harvested from the environment; however, this makes the system dependent upon its environment and requires energy management to maintain performance. The objective of energy management in environmental monitoring is to produce the highest quality data set possible. These devices require simple, robust control, so a fuzzy inference system is used to produce a controller that maps device states to actions. To ensure that the fuzzy controller selects the best actions for each state, it is tuned by expert knowledge and genetic optimization. The simulation results from the Arctic and Boreal regions both show that these controllers allow energy consumption to be matched to the local energy profile, which improves performance over operating at a fixed level of energy consumption. By reducing the rate of data capture when energy is scarce, the monitor prevents failure and conserves energy. When energy is plentiful, the rate of data capture was increased to acquire high quality data. Managing energy and data storage allows the control system to delay energy-intensive operations, like wireless transmission, until environmental conditions became favourable. By combining energy management with suitable storage technologies, the vulnerability of the monitoring system is reduced to the point where storage can compensate for environmental energy scarcity and a suitable level of performance can be guaranteed for a deployment period of a few years.
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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