Bharathan Balaji (bbalaji) [Post Doc]
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Networked & Embedded Systems Laboratory

Electrical Engineering

Lab: 1762 Boelter Hall

Mail:
University of California - Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA - 90095

Email:
bbalaji@ucla.edu

Tel [mobile]:
858 344 9608

Web Page

Biography: I am a Postdoctoral Scholar at University of California, Los Angeles, working with Mani Srivastava. I did my PhD in Computer Science at UC San Diego, and my advisors were Yuvraj Agarwal and Rajesh Gupta. My PhD research focused on improving energy efficiency of buildings, by creating software applications that exploit existing infrastructure to provide services such as information organization, fault detection, personalized control and occupancy sensing. My Masters research focused on creating low power, low cost, wireless sensors that augment the existing building infrastructure.

During my PhD, I worked as an intern with Dr. Du Li at Ericsson Research, where I created an WiFi based occupancy sensing solution. As a Masters student, I also worked with Prof. Ramesh Rao at Calit2, improving energy efficiency of 802.11b protocol using software defined radio.

I got my Bachelor of Technology in Electronics and Communication Engineering from Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology. During my undergrad, I worked with Prof. Ashwin Kothari to apply machine learning techniques for handoff prediction in cellular networks. I also worked with Prof. Aliasgar Contractor at IIT Bombay, to create Lab-on-Chip sensors using microelectronic manufacturing technologies.

Education:

  • Bachelor of Technology in Electronics and Communication Engineering, Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology, Nagpur, India, 2009.
  • Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (Computer Engineering), University of California, San Diego, 2011.
    Thesis: Using occupancy to reduce energy consumption of buildings
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science (Computer Engineering), University of California, San Diego, 2016.
    Thesis: Software Augmented Buildings: Exploiting Existing Infrastructure to Improve Energy Efficiency and Comfort in Commercial Buildings

Experience:
Research Intern: Ericsson Research, Jul 2012 – Sep 2012
Research in building energy analysis and WiFi based occupancy detection
Mentor: Dr. Du Li.

Service:
• Reviewer for Elsevier Energy and Buildings 2016
• Reviewer for Elsevier Future Generation Computer Systems 2016
• Reviewer for Elsevier Energy and Buildings 2015
• Reviewer for IEEE Embedded Systems Letters (ESL) 2015
• Reviewer for IEEE/ACM Transaction on Networking 2014
• Session Chair for Data Aware Energy Use Workshop as part of Mathematics for Planet Earth (MPE) 2014
• Reviewer for ACM Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (Ubicomp) 2014
• Reviewer for IEEE Micro 2014
• Reviewer for Elsevier Sustainable Computing, Informatics and Systems 2014
• Reviewer for IEEE Embedded System Letters 2013
• Reviewer for IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics 2013

Research Interests: I'm interested in creating computing systems that leverage modern software and hardware technologies to transform domains such as buildings, city infrastructure, education and sustainability. I like to create practical applications that enhances current systems and enables innovation. My research projects apply principles from software engineering, embedded systems, machine learning and human computer interaction.

My current focus is in the area of sustainability, particularly building energy efficiency. Towards this goal, my colleagues and I have created low power wireless sensors, web-services platforms for hosting building management services, and data driven algorithms for organizing information and detecting faults. I have also conducted studies to understand challenges from users perspective and how their participation can impact building energy consumption.

I recently completed my PhD from UC San Diego, and have joined UC Los Angeles as a Postdoctoral Scholar with Prof. Mani Srivastava.

Recent Publications:

Other Publications:
• Zodiac: Organizing Large Deployment of Sensors to Create Reusable Applications for Buildings
Bharathan Balaji, Chetan Verma, Balakrishnan Narayanaswamy, Yuvraj Agarwal
ACM Conference on Embedded Systems For Energy-Efficient Built Environments (BuildSys), 2015
Nominated for Best Paper Award

• Data Driven Investigation of Faults in HVAC Systems with Model, Cluster and Compare (MCC)
Balakrishnan Narayanaswamy, Bharathan Balaji, Rajesh Gupta, Yuvraj Agarwal
ACM Conference on Embedded Systems for Energy-Efficient Buildings (BuildSys), 2014

• Sentinel: An Occupancy Based HVAC Actuation System using existing WiFi Infrastructure in Commercial Buildings
Bharathan Balaji, Jian Xu, Rajesh Gupta, Yuvraj Agarwal
ACM Conference on Embedded Networked Sensor Systems (SenSys), 2013

• Duty-Cycling Buildings Aggressively: The Next Frontier in HVAC Control
Yuvraj Agarwal, Bharathan Balaji, Seemanta Dutta, Rajesh Gupta, Thomas Weng
ACM Conference on Information Processing in Sensor Networks (IPSN), 2011
Citations: 100+

• A Novel Power Saving Strategy for Greening IEEE 802.11 based Wireless Networks
Bharathan Balaji, Bheemarjuna Tamma, B.S.Manoj, Ramesh Rao
IEEE Global Telecommunications Conference (Globecom), 2010

• Models, Abstractions, and Architectures: The Missing Links in Cyber-Physical Systems
Bharathan Balaji, Mohammad Abdullah Al Faruque, Nikil Dutt, Rajesh Gupta, Yuvraj Agarwal
ACM Annual Design Automation Conference (DAC), 2015

• ZonePAC: Zonal Power Estimation and Control via HVAC Metering and Occupant Feedback
Bharathan Balaji, Hidetoshi Teraoka, Rajesh Gupta, Yuvraj Agarwal
ACM Workshop on Embedded Systems For Energy-Efficient Buildings (BuildSys), 2013

• Accurate Characterization of Variability in Power Consumption in Modern Computing Platforms
Bharathan Balaji, John McCullough, Rajesh Gupta, Yuvraj Agarwal
USENIX Conference on Power-Aware Computing and Systems (HotPower), 2012

• Managing Plug-Loads for Demand Response within Buildings
Thomas Weng, Bharathan Balaji, Seemanta Dutta, Rajesh Gupta, Yuvraj Agarwal
ACM Workshop on Embedded Sensing Systems for Energy-Efficiency in Buildings (BuildSys), 2011

• Occupancy-Driven Energy Management for Smart Building Automation
Yuvraj Agarwal, Bharathan Balaji, Rajesh Gupta, Jacob Lyles, Michael Wei, Thomas Weng
ACM Workshop on Embedded Sensing Systems for Energy-Efficiency in Building (BuildSys), 2010

• BuildingRules: A Trigger-Action Based System To Manage Complex Commercial Buildings
Alessandro A. Nacci, Bharathan Balaji, Paola Spoletini, Vincenzo Rana, Rajesh Gupta, Donatella Sciuto, Yuvraj Agarwal
ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (Ubicomp), 2015

• Demo Abstract - BuildingSherlock: Fault Management Framework for HVAC Systems
Rizhen Zhang, Bharathan Balaji, Yan Zhang, Balakrishnan Narayanaswamy, Yuvraj Agarwal
ACM Conference on Embedded Systems for Energy-Efficient Buildings (BuildSys), 2014

• A WiFi Based Occupancy Sensing Approach to Smart Energy in Commercial Office Buildings
Du Li, Bharathan Balaji, Yifei Jiang, Kshitij Singh
ACM Workshop on Embedded Sensing Systems for Energy-Efficiency in Buildings (BuildSys), 2012

• Controlling Actuation in Central HVAC Systems in Buildings
Jason Koh, Bharathan Balaji, Rajesh Gupta, Yuvraj Agarwal
ACM Conference on Embedded Systems For Energy-Efficient Built Environments (BuildSys), 2015
Best Poster Award

Awards:
• Best Poster Award, BuildSys 2015
• Nominated for Best Paper Award, BuildSys 2015
• Most Innovative Solution for proposal on Picking up the PACE: Expanding PACE financing programs for Commercial Owned Buildings in Better Buildings Case Competition, 2014

Skills:
• Programming Intermediate: Python, C
• Programming Basic: Bash, C++, Java, LaTeX, MySQL, Cassandra, HTML/CSS
• Machine Learning: Python Scikit Learn
• Hardware: Circuit Design, PCB Design, PCB Assembly
• RESTful Web Services: Flask, Django
• User Study: Contextual Interviews
• Building Energy and HVAC Management
• Technical Writing and Presentation