Power disaggregation is aimed at determining appliance-by-appliance electricity consumption, leveraging upon a single meter only, which measures the entire power demand. Data-driven procedures based on Factorial Hidden Markov Models (FHMMs) have produced remarkable results on energy disaggregation. Nevertheless, these procedures have various weaknesses; there is a scalability problem as the number of devices to observe rises, and the inference step is computationally heavy. Artificial neural networks (ANNs) have been demonstrated to be a viable solution to deal with FHMM shortcomings. Nonetheless, there are two significant limitations: A complicated and time-consuming training system based on back-propagation has to be employed to estimate the neural architecture parameters, and large amounts of training data covering as many operation conditions as possible need to be collected to attain top performances. In this work, we aim to overcome these limitations by leveraging upon the unique and useful characteristics of the extreme learning machine technique, which is based on a collection of randomly chosen hidden units and analytically defined output weights. We find that the suggested approach outperforms state-of-the-art solutions, namely FHMMs and ANNs, on the UK-DALE corpus. Moreover, our solution generalizes better than previous approaches for unseen houses, and avoids a data-hungry training scheme.
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