Then, add an “smart” to your heating system with The Raspberry Pi.

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Raspberry Pi Zero
(Image credit: Rob Lauer)

The construction of your DIY smart home that you’ve always dreamed of is an easy task, thanks to the Raspberry Pi and the growing sensors market. The multitude of maker communities and electronics enhance the building process with endless tutorials and projects to follow, such as the Thermal anomaly detector project designed in the hands of Rob Lauer at Hackster.

The project monitors Lauer’s house heating system, employing AI to watch out for any sudden variations in temperatures. It’s not his first Pi project, and we have recently reviewed the Speed trap powered by a Pi developed by Lauer, who uses the Raspberry Pi to detect when vehicles that are passing have exceeded speed limits.

In simple terms, the Pi is monitoring a boiler in Lauer’s basement by using a camera module. Lauer designed a custom machine-learning model to train the Pi to recognize safe and familiar thermal readings from the system. The data gathered from the Pi is sent to a cloud service via a cellular wireless module that is wireless for the Pi.

Lauer’s mainboard decided to go with the latest Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W board connected with a Blues Wireless Notecard Raspberry Pi kit that provides wireless IoT capabilities, such as cellular connection GPS capabilities. The Pimoroni MX90640 thermal camera can take thermal photos and heat them.


The ML model of anomalous heat detection was developed by using Edge Impulse. Lauer is monitoring his boiler in this instance, but it can easily be modified to monitor other hardware that generates heat. Its Blues Wireless Notecard isn’t critical; however, it provides some additional features that could be worth it based on the things you’d like to monitor and where it’s in the vicinity.

If you’d like to build this project on your own or better understand how it all works and how it all works, take a look at the Thermal anomaly-detection project page at Hackster. Lauer has given you everything you’ll need to begin with a complete list of components as well as a tutorial on installing the software.

For more inspiration on Pi projects, check out Rob Lauer’s profile on Hackster for more projects, and take a look at the list below of top Raspberry Pi projects for other amazing creations by Makers in our community.