IoT & Utilities Industries
As more and more devices are interconnected through IoT, energy businesses might see an increased ease in welcoming new energy sources, increased efficiency of assets, enhanced reliability, upgraded security and the growth of new business models and services. As urbanization grows and business models demand higher efficiency, energy enterprises will need to increase capacity while developing new solutions and optimizing management of current assets.
There is a lot of room for advancement and innovation in this industry. Energy management on the basis of the Internet of Things has significant benefits for every element of the electric supply chain network. IoT can help reduce carbon emissions, minimise energy spending, integrate green energy sources, optimise asset maintenance, automate processes, and effectively prevent and combat accidents and outages.
Here are three ways of integrating IoT in the energy industry.
Remote Asset Management and monitoring:
IoT enabled sensors can be used to manage equipment remotely. These could keep track of parameters like vibrations, temperature, wear and so on to optimise maintenance and operations. Predictive maintenance could significantly increase reliability by keeping everything running optimally. Digital twin technology could also help with this. Data gathered from IoT sensors is used to create the digital twin. This technology could allow virtual troubleshooting and remote support. IoT enabled sensors would also increase overall safety: for example they could be used to identify leaks in pipelines that left unattended might be disastrous.
IoT Energy Management:
There are many automated IoT integrated tools that allow better energy management and even savings on the customer’s side, for example smart thermostats, sockets or bulbs. Energy management systems like meters, sensors, and control and analytics tools, allow customers, businesses, and energy professionals alike to manage and control processes, assets, and resources in the supply chain. Smart meters manage power consumption in real-time, evaluate expenses and share data among customers and utility companies. This data ultimately helps energy suppliers adjust supply and pricing. Customers, in turn, can regulate their electricity consumption at an appliance level and eliminate energy waste.
Energy and utility employees are mostly dependent on analog operations or outdated tools and technologies. Much of the workforce is thought to only be partially prepared for new technology. Connected worker technology could allow the existing workforce to transfer its knowledge to the new generation of digitally native workers. Depending on traditional processes, instead, will likely result in a loss of profits and lower efficiency as the sector experiences labor turnover. Connecting the frontline workforce can be both an opportunity and a responsibility. Either way, it requires top priority to bring about a safer, agile, and more productive workforce that will not suffer from knowledge drain.
Every application of IoT in the energy and utilities sector 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 in the coming future.