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Internet of Things for the Energy Industry
Category: Power & Utility

How IoT is contributing to the development of the Energy & Utility industry?

The internet of things (IoT) represents the possibility of a new world, where all things are more measurable, efficient, and controllable. The insights generated as data by the latest Internet-connected devices could be used to increase efficiency, real-time decision making, solutions of crucial problems, and ultimately create new and innovative experiences.

However, as more and more devices interconnect, enterprises are encountering disintegration and new challenges and to collect and use the power of data they require solutions to offer interoperable, end-to-end collaboration that connects the intersections among the internet and devices, along with riding the waves of innovation.

For energy businesses, this may lead to a better and wider option phase to welcome new energy sources, better efficiency of assets, enhanced reliability, upgraded security, and unraveling new business models and services. While urbanization grows and business models demand higher efficiency, energy enterprises have to increase capacity while developing new solutions, optimizing management of current assets.

When we are talking about how we are managing the delivery and usage of water and energy, or how we run our cities, there is a lot of room for advancement and innovation. As discussed earlier, energy management on the basis of the Internet of Things has significant benefits for every element of the electric supply chain network, from power generation till the customers pay their electronic bills. Nevertheless, here’s what IoT can do to Energy & Utility industry:

  • Reduce carbon emission
  • Minimize energy spending
  • Integrate green energy
  • Get visibility to energy use
  • Optimize asset maintenance
  • Automate processes
  • Effectively combat accidents, blackouts, and outage

1. Remote Asset Management and monitoring:

Integrating IoT sensors to generate, transmit, and distribute equipment could allow energy enterprises to manage it remotely. These sensors calculate parameters like vibration, temperature, and wear to optimize maintenance schedules. This precaution maintenance approach could significantly enhance reliability by keeping equipment in optimal equipment and allowing it to fix before it fails.

Digital twin technology that includes making an advanced digital model of current equipment, can help with this too. IoT sensors integrated with the physical unit gather data about its performance, which they give to the digital twin. Also, for supporting preventive maintenance programs, digital twin technology allows virtual troubleshooting and support from remote locations. IoT sensors can also help to increase safety. Attaching internet-connected sensors to pipelines can identify leaks, if that left unattended, might result in fires, explosion, or blackouts. Leaks also result in wasted resources and contribute to global warming.


2. IoT Energy Management:

Thermostats and smart bulbs are two of the most popular automation tools that show how IoT and energy management offer savings without adding any extra efforts on the customers’ side. Energy management systems like meters, sensors and apps, controls, and analytics tools allow customers, businesses, energy professionals, etc. to manage and control processes, assets, and resources, in the supply chain.

For instance, smart meters manage power consumption in real-time, actively evaluate expenses and share data among customers and utility companies. This data helps energy suppliers adjust demand-response programs and pricing. Customers, in return, could regulate their electricity consumption at a granular level with the help of apps, respond to load changes, eliminate wasting energy.

3. Workforce Transformation:

Today energy and utility employees are highly dependent on analog operations or outdated tools and technologies. In the recent study of senior utility executives, 64% said their workforce was partially prepared for new technology, or not prepared completely. Unfortunately, less than 5% considered themselves highly prepared. Connected worker technology allows the existing workforce to transfer its knowledge to the new generation of digitally native workers. On the contrary, depending on traditional processes is unlikely to be extensible or cost-effective as the sector experiences labor turnover.

Connecting the frontline workforce is an opportunity in various ways and a responsibility in the others. Either way, it requires a top priority to make safer, agile, and more productive workforces that will not suffer from knowledge drain.

Conclusion:

Every application of IoT on energy and utility mentioned above is an opportunity for entrepreneurs and utilities to offer extra value to customers and the combination of all these applications will surely help make energy cleaner, cheaper, more sustainable, and available. At KCS, we are solution evangelists for IT services for the energy and utility industry, who are here for making a difference. We offer solutions in the areas of asset management, inventory management, workforce management, contract management, capital project management, etc.

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