The Smart Meter Challenge: Feasibility of Autonomous Indoor IoT Devices Depending on Its Energy Harvesting Source and IoT Wireless Technology
Most smart meters are connected and powered by the electric mains, requiring the service interruption and qualified personnel for their installation. Wireless technologies and energy harvesting techniques have been proved as alternatives for communications and power supply, respectively. In this work, we analyse the energy consumption of the most used IoT wireless technologies nowadays: Sigfox, LoRaWAN, NB-IoT, Wi-Fi, BLE. Smart meters’ energy consumption accounts for metering, standby and communication processes. Experimental measurements show that communication consumption may vary upon the specific characteristics of each wireless communication technology—payload, connection establishment, transmission time. Results show that the selection of a specific technology will depend on the application requirements (message payload, metering period) and location constraints (communication range, infrastructure availability). Besides, we compare the performance of the most suitable energy harvesting (EH) techniques for smart meters: photovoltaic (PV), radiofrequency (RF) and magnetic induction (MIEH). Thus, EH technique selection will depend on the availability of each source at the smart meter’s location. The most appropriate combination of IoT wireless technology and EH technique must be selected accordingly to the very use case requirements and constraints.