© Vestemi Radbot It’s a smart thermostat for hydronic heating systems and is not such a dumb idea. After we downsized and duplexed our house , the thermostat is in our apartment and the people upstairs constantly complain that they are too cold, especially now when it is seriously freezing out. That’s why I have been thinking about the Radbot. I learned about it when I met inventor Damon Hart-Davis in London. It is a smart thermostatic valve for hydronic (hot water radiator) systems that are common in older houses like mine, and most houses in Europe. Radbot in a box in London/ Lloyd Alter/ Unlike conventional thermostatic valves, the Radbot reacts to more than just temperature but also changes in light levels. Vestemi claims energy savings of up to 30 percent. This seemed high to me, especially on hot water systems that have so much thermal lag, which is the time it takes for the radiator to start radiating. But these are not theoretical numbers; it has been tested. Hart-Davis explains how it learns through “probalistic predictive artificial intelligence,” and deals with the lag: If Radbot thinks you’re around now, you’ll get full target temperature. If Radbot thinks […]

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