Spring 2018 – 497-214: Insights into Power-over-Ethernet Lighting Vulnerabilities & Capabilities for Improved Efficiency

Meeting Days/Time
Wednesdays from 6:25 to 9:05 pm
Hubbell, Inc.
Daniel Tomal (INTM) (drtomal@aol.com)
Appropriate Majors
Architectural Engineering, Architecture, Business, Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Engineering Management, Environmental Engineering, Industrial Technology & Management, Information Technology & Management, Mechanical Engineering
Technological Innovation

This open-ended, problem is based on new technologies of Power over Ethernet (PoE) lighting and HVAC control systems with advanced smart-phone controlled capabilities (Apps) and environmentally-friendly features instead of traditional wasteful manual lighting and facility control systems. However, along with advanced technology, vulnerabilities are being introduced such as unreliability, inefficient operation, and breaches of data that can result in energy wastes and costs. Therefore, there is a need to analyze, and determine how and when to cost-effectively replace old manual systems and best employ PoE systems by assessing old systems, identifying potential vulnerabilities, ways to improve operations and full-capacity, and overall efficient use.

Presently, there are no obvious solutions to this costly problem, especially when old manual lighting and HVAC systems are used in old buildings that impose potential negative impact on facilities, time, money, and the environment. It is also important to consider the best available options for replacing these old systems and implementing full-capacity PoE systems. This situation can especially be prevalent in many commercial buildings, especially older ones, which requires analysis, identification of true energy wastes, and understanding of how to best use PoE lighting systems in various application environments.

The objective of this IPRO project is to analyze traditional manual lighting and HVAC switching systems, identify vulnerabilities and capabilities of current PoE lighting systems, and recommend the best use of PoE systems in specific situations.  A cost-effective, creative solution is needed to address this technical complex problem.

A PoE lighting system is being donated by Hubbell and will be installed in the IIT Smart Tech Lab with the help of IIT Office of Energy and Sustainability and Hubbell. Students will have the opportunity to learn this technology, investigate the vulnerabilities, and make recommendations for how this advanced technology can replace old manual systems and benefit from its unique capabilities.

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