Grid-integrated washing machine aims to make UK greener

2 September 2013
By Tereza Pultarova
Mobile version
Share |
150 households will be equipped with Indesit's super-smart washing machine in the framework of the Customer-Led Network Revolution (CLNR) project

150 households will be equipped with Indesit's super-smart washing machine in the framework of the Customer-Led Network Revolution (CLNR) project

Indesit’s Aqualtis washing machine, considered the smartest in the European market, will be installed in 150 UK homes to facilitate a shift towards low-carbon economy.

Part of the Ofgem-backed Customer-Led Network Revolution (CLNR) project, the smart washing machines installed across Northeast England should help homeowners save money as well as reduce the pressure on UK’s electricity network.

The appliance, designed to be fully integrated into a smart grid, is connected to the Internet and engages in a lively communication exchange with the grid, trying to define the best moment for scheduling a washing cycle.

The washing machine informs the consumer via an LCD display about how much the washing cycle would cost at the given moment and provides with alternative, cheaper options. Most of these options will propose waiting until off-peak hours when the general demand is lower.

“With this washing machine trial, and lots of other trials as part of the CLNR project, we will begin to see how flexible customers are willing to be in terms of when and how they use their electricity,” said Allan Row, Low Carbon Networks Fund project manager for British Gass - one of the project's coordinators.

“We want to develop an understanding of the role customers could play in the UK’s low carbon future, looking at whether they are happy to change their usual routines because it will make their bills cheaper, or because they’re offered an incentive by their network,” he said

The pressure on the already tested electricity network is expected to increase as more people move towards electric vehicles and installing solar panels. The smart appliances offer a tool to electricity network operators to contact the consumer directly via the appliance with an incentive to wait. An overloaded electricity grid operator could, for example, offer a reduced tariff if the costumer is willing to do the laundry at a less busy time.

“We are excited that the CLNR project is exploring the intelligence of our Hotpoint Aqualtis smart washing machine,” said Stefano Frattesi, Indesit’s Technology Center Director. “We have made pioneering progress in the field of smart grids and this new trial brings huge possibilities in terms of energy savings, confirming our commitment to innovating to benefit the environment.”

During a 12-month trial period, British Gas will work with two groups of customers, monitoring their behaviour. The first group will be on a ‘Peak Electricity Saver’ trial and has been assigned a time-of-use (TOU) tariff to help develop a greater understanding of how cheaper tariff times impact their electricity consumption.

The second group of customers will be on the ‘Energy Supply Manager’ trial and has agreed to ‘demand side response’, providing the network operator with the ability to ask the customer whether they would consider rescheduling the time at which they have programmed their washing.

Recruitment for households to take part in the washing machine trials is ongoing, but is restricted to British Gas customers who receive their electricity via Northern Powergrid, the electricity distributor for the Northeast and Yorkshire.

Several other trials are currently taking place in the same region as part of the CLNR project, involving other ‘smart’ technology such as solar panels, thermal store heat pumps, and electric vehicles.

Latest Issue

E&T cover image 1606

"Where would Frankenstein and his creative mind fit into today's workplace? Should we fear technological developments or embrace them?"

E&T jobs

  • Graduate Electrical Engineers

    • United Kingdom and Ireland
    • Competitive

    Due to the diverse nature of our business there are many different teams each with very different responsibilities.

    • Recruiter: AECOM

    Apply for this job

  • Network Innovation Engineer / Analyst - UK Power Sector

    Premium job

    Nortech Management Ltd
    • Birmingham, West Midlands or Pershore (Worcestershire)
    • £30,000 - £35,000 (depending on experience) + benefits

    Network Innovation Engineer / Analyst to join a team of talented technology enthusiasts who design and support the low carbon networks of the future.

    • Recruiter: Nortech Management Ltd

    Apply for this job

  • Electrical Engineer with Strong telecoms background

    Premium job

    Sure South Atlantic Ltd
    • Falkland Islands

    Sure South Atlantic Ltd currently has a unique engineering opportunity in their Falkland Islands office. Surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, teeming ...

    • Recruiter: Sure South Atlantic Ltd

    Apply for this job

  • Cyber, Communication, Information and Data Scientist roles

    Premium job

    • Porton Down, Salisbury
    • Competitive salaries

    Information is everything. Use it to serve your country and help keep us safe.

    • Recruiter: Dstl

    Apply for this job

  • Production Engineer

    Premium job

    Compact Engineering
    • Thirsk / Leeds / Banbury / Colchester / Cambridge
    • Salary will be competitive and commensurate with experience, knowledge, aptitude and capability

    A Production Engineer with some knowledge and understanding of radiant energy transfer.

    • Recruiter: Compact Engineering

    Apply for this job

  • Electronics Engineer

    Premium job

    Nikon Metrology Europe
    • Tring, Hertfordshire

    Nikon Metrology is looking for an Electronics Engineer to join our Electronics Team based in Tring (UK).

    • Recruiter: Nikon Metrology Europe

    Apply for this job

  • Senior Development Engineer, Electronics

    Premium job

    Helmet Integrated Systems / Gentex Corporation
    • Letchworth Garden City, Hertfordshire
    • Competitive

    We are an innovative, robust and fast growing business, whose main focus is to deliver continues improvement to existing products and offer new sol..

    • Recruiter: Helmet Integrated Systems / Gentex Corporation

    Apply for this job

  • Engineering Manager

    BAE Systems
    • Hampshire, England, Portsmouth
    • Competitive package

    Would you like to play a vital role in managing and implementing the correct governance in order to enable BAE Systems to provide assurance and integrity of supply chain data? We currently have a vacancy for an Engineering Manager - Product Integrity

    • Recruiter: BAE Systems

    Apply for this job

  • Engineering Project Manager - Electrical & Automation

    • York, North Yorkshire
    • c£45,000 + Car Allowance + Bonus + Excellent Benefits

    Nestlé Product Technology Centre in York currently has an excellent opportunity for an Engineering Project Manager

    • Recruiter: Nestle

    Apply for this job

  • Consultant Engineer - Test

    BAE Systems
    • Farnborough, Hampshire, England
    • Negotiable

    Consultant Engineer - Test Would you like to be a lead within an exciting team working on one of the UK's largest defence projects? We currently have a vacancy for a Consultant Engineer - Test at our site in Ash Vale. As a Consultant Engineer - Test, you

    • Recruiter: BAE Systems

    Apply for this job

More jobs ▶


Choose the way you would like to access the latest news and developments in your field.

Subscribe to E&T