Horizon Blog

Connected Kitchen – mid point

The Connected Kitchen project explores manual cleaning tasks within kitchen environments with a specific focus on:

  • How sensor data can be used to help people understand their current cleaning behaviours and encourage more effect cleaning
  • How sensor data can be used for remote auditing of cleaning operation
  • The development of hybrid cleaning products which interact with the connected kitchen

Led by Thomas Lodge and Pepita Barnard the Connected Kitchen team recently completed their first user studies which included a cleaning task and a pre and post task questionnaire. The task included cleaning a chopping board and plate ‘fouled’ with a UV marker. The participants were also fitted with accelerometers to monitor their arm movements during the cleaning tasks. Following the task participants were showed UV images of the items so they could understand the effectiveness of their cleaning.








Results showed that the plate was easier to clean than the chopping board due to its smoother surface and that, for this small study, larger amplitude x,y,z components in the accelerometer data correlated with more UV marker being removed.  We also observed distinctly different cleaning behaviours, in technique and emphasis placed on cleaning preparation time, the cleaning task and cleaning the surrounding area (sink/surfaces).  The activity breakdown of all the distinct elements that make up a cleaning task will inform our feedback and data visualisation work.  We will also be refining our questionnaires and post-task interviews to gather additional data on user habits.

The next step for the Connected Kitchen project involves another study with an updated task (including cleaning a surface) and further sensors including pressure sensors in the cleaning sponger, flow monitors on the water tabs and a balance to measure the amount of cleaning chemicals used. The study will also include an interface to display the efficacy of the cleaning task (via the UV images) to the users in addition to data about the resources and actions they performed, and how these compare to others performing a similar task. Following this second trial we will hold a workshop with project partners and stakeholders to feedback and discuss our findings and plan further work.


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