Intuitive power boards that cut energy use by switching off audio-visual appliances and computers in stand-by mode will be available to carbon-conscious consumers early next year.
Embertec - a finalist in the inaugural CleverGreen Innovators to Watch Product Awards - says its invention takes a 'common sense' approach to managing energy needs in today's appliance-heavy households.
The power boards use Embertec's patented technology to determine when a device or series of devices is in use or on stand-by and intuitively controls power supply to the appliance.
In Australia, consumers spend nearly $2 billion a year on wasteful power consumption related to audio-visual and PC equipment, Embertec chief executive Domenico Gelonese says.
"Our product makes every device plugged into it intelligent. It's stopping appliances from being a drain on our environment without any human intervention," he said.
Mr Gelonese's father and Embertec's inventor has been using first iterations of the technology at his home since 1996.
Carbon dioxide emissions are reduced by using less power, and households can save about $140 a year for an average audio-visual environment and about $85 a year for an average computer environment, Mr Gelonese says.
"These savings levels have been proven in extensive independent Australian residential trials. When taking into account future electricity price increases, the savings will be even bigger for households and businesses in years to come," he said.
Embertec (embertec.com) - which is backed by leading venture capitalists, such as Playford Capital, Cleantech Ventures and Terra Rossa Capital, and other private investors - says its fully developed prototypes are ready for manufacturing. They are aimed at the local and export markets.
Entry-level Embertec products are likely to be priced around $80 and promise quick payback, with a life-span of 15 years.
While other energy-saving devices and technologies exist, most involve changing consumer habits.
"With our products, it's about plugging it in once and forgetting about it," Mr Gelonese says.
A marketing campaign is being finalised to target the three core markets for the product - existing residential and commercial properties, retrofits and new constructions.