Thursday, August 13, 2015

TerraSwarm Students Win Best Environmental Impact Award for AC Plug-Load Meter

TerraSwarm students, Sam DeBruin and Branden Ghena, recently won the ‘Best Environmental Impact Award’ at the 2015 TI Innovation Challenge North America Design Contest for their AC plug-load meter, PowerBlade.  

According to the students' webpage and project submission page, their new design enables affordable large-scale studies of plugload energy usage – an area of growing national importance. PowerBlade is the smallest, lowest cost, and lowest power AC plug-load meter that measures real, reactive and apparent power, and reports this data, along with cumulative energy consumption, over an industry-standard Bluetooth Low Energy radio. PowerBlade’s footprint is only 1.1 inch x 1.1 inch with a 1/16 inch profile, allowing it to sandwich between the plug and the wall outlet. It operates on a budget of less than 1mA, a usable bandwidth for its application.

Sam DeBruin and Branden Ghena are graduate students at the University of Michigan and are advised by Assistant Professor Prabal Dutta.

To read more about the PowerBlade, visit their website or their contest submission page:

For more information about the TI Innovation Challenge go to: