In the present paper, a sustainable system emulator (SSE) for living environments powered by renewable energy sources is addressed. The main purpose of the SSE is to emulate the various factors that influence sustainability using a simple engineering approach. The main goal is to realize a useful mixed-reality platform for designing living environments with overall energy self-sufficiency as well as adequate habitability. The SSE design concept is based on the combination of an outer-system emulator (OSE) and an inner-system emulator (ISE). The OSE uses artificial lights and air blowers to emulate the sunshine and wind conditions in the Fukushima area of Japan. The ISE emulates the interior of a residential environment, based on renewable energy sources and power storage facilities, and consists of reduced-scale models powered by solar cells and a wind turbine. The ISE also includes DC appliances, which emulate domestic power usage, and electrochemical batteries for power storage. Control algorithms for energy management can also be implemented in the SSE. An experimental study was carried out using the SSE to emulate both the natural environment and living environments, and the relationship among the different emulation parameters was investigated. Furthermore, the experimental results indicated that accelerated testing using SSE may be effective for improving the design efficiency of renewable-energy powered systems.

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