IBM has devised a new device in collaboration with eMeter which is based on a smart grid. This device has been developed under their smarter planet strategy. This technology helps in intelligent power management of the house and is available to the public.
Quoting the article at earthweb by Andy Patrizio which describes what a smart grid is,
A smart grid uses two-way digital technology to deliver electricity to customers’ homes and to control appliances to increase energy efficiency and reduce power use. A smart grid includes an intelligent monitoring system that keeps track of all electricity flowing in the system, new power lines to reduce the power lost during transmission and the ability to integrate alternative sources of electricity such as solar and wind.
Smart grid can be used to regulate power to a device. For example, we can program/control the fans to work only for the hours we stay in the room. This makes power management easier and more efficient. The US government has already laid out plans for implementing this in public utilities at large firms. IBM aims to provide this service to smaller utilities, which are not covered by the government plan.
The eMeter smart grid appliance is completely built with IBM hardware and software. This device monitors two-way energy flow and strikes out a balance between all active devices.
The product is expected to be available by the second quarter of this year.