The Impact of IoT on the Energy Sector

Jun 29, 2018 posted by Santusht Bhatia under Digital Transformation, Internet of Things

The Impact of IoT on the Energy Sector

Don’t you fancy yourself being driven in a self-controlling car; the one that self-adjusts the AC temperature and other internal settings to comfort you well? Or, how about living in a home where lights turn on as you walk through the room space? Well, this seems like sitting through a sci-fi movie, but fortunately or so, we’re sitting at the cusp of a revolution that’s gradually turning our fancy flights into reality.

This is the age of the ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT), or the ‘Internet of Everything’ (IoE) as some mayrefer it so.

For the uninitiated, the Internet of Things is a chain of devices that collect, consolidate, aggregate, and act on data in real-time. It’s an intelligent synthesis of wireless technologies and the Internet, along with micro-services. It uses a couple of enablers—sensors, gateway, communication hardware, and the cloud—to take charge and put IoT into being. 

The IoT Knocks

Today most of the industries need machines, and subsequently, abundant energy to make these machines work. Without energy, the operations come to a halt, the value chains collapse, and the companies crumble down. There’s no better way we can stress on the indispensability of energy and its direct advantages to every other industry. However, the energy sector has been trying hard to combat a number of operational inefficiencies which is costing it millions of dollars.

●     Its continued dependence on paper-based processes is leading to glaring inconsistencies in data and jeopardizing its overall quality

●     To add more injury, there’s no sufficient data to analyze performance and spends from time to time

●     The lack of accessibility to the remote areas is causing procedural delays and impairing the value chain

●     There’s no mechanism in place for early fault detection and averting the operational hiccups

●     Lastly, there is increased scrutiny and condemnation for degrading the environmental balance and harming ecosystems

I think it not hard to deduce why the energy sector has been looking for a sustainable solution—like the Internet of Things—to improve efficiencies, savings, and bottom-line benefits. The Internet of Things promises to change how users consume energy in a significant way, imparting users Iot Energywith insights to understand their real-time energy consumption and make customized recommendations based on the gathered data. It is steadily moving in and is continuing to make the right noises in disrupting an array of industries. 

The Internet of Things has created an interactive ecosystem that helps in monitoring, reducing manual processes, streamlining the flow of information, leveraging predictive asset management, adding more reliability to the existing systems, and reducing cost overheads. 

An independent research has revealed that the industries in the US have cut down energy consumption by 14-22% as a result of their effective usage of the existing IoT technologies. According to McKinsey, IoT will have an annual economic impact of $3.9 trillion to $11.1 trillion worldwide by 2025. Another independent study by Inmarsat has found that energy businesses are turning to the Internet of Things and leveraging it to reduce waste and emissions in the pursuit of global environmental sustainability. 

It’s no secret that the market of the Internet of Things is exploding. And, the energy sector is leveraging it to build highly scalable infrastructure that augments competencies and cuts costs. The Internet of Things is also making great strides across industries, like Solar, Oil, Gas, Hydro, Wind, and Thermal. And, with technological advances, like the evolution of Nano Technology and intelligent server management, diluting the obstacles, the scope of IoT application in the energy sector has broadened, keeping us awed. 

How is the Internet of Things Improving Energy Management?

Here’s how the energy businesses are adopting the IoT-oriented solutions to pave its way to smarter future. 

#1 Upgrading the Aging Infrastructure to Improve Productivity and Connectivity

IoT upgrades infrastructure by embedding sensors and connecting devices to a network. While sensors intercept the environments and transmit data, connected devices act on this data, scrub it, and mine it further into data packets. Next, these are allowed to circulate across operational workflows, allowing for smart data analytics.

IoT creates a ‘transformed’ infrastructure with automated alert and advanced predictive technologies to allow businesses improve productivity, plan for unforeseen downtimes, keep resources in full supply, and maintain the efficiency of operations across multiple facilities. Simply speaking, the IoT-oriented infrastructure provides for optimal performance control. As for the energy sector, sensors analyze the demand of utilities, allowing a sufficient standby for either reducing or ramping up the energy supply. Such real-time notifications can bring workforce heading to a situation, and avoid any damage or wastage. 

2# Creating Intelligent Energy Management

The application of IoT in the energy sector has pulled the plug on rampant energy inefficiencies and spiraling costs of equipment maintenance. Oil fields at remote locations have isolated data centers, which are important to get offloaded into a centralized repository, say a cloud, for better management and processing of information across supply chains. IoT provides for this uniform distribution of data in real-time for incremental improvements in energy utilization and efficiency, eliminating any possibility of wastage.

Companies are also inclined to integrate smart grid systems for limiting energy consumption. Smart grids allow operators to preset the timings and the amount of energy supply in the facilities even with a smartphone. 

3# Achieving Convenience 

IoT offers a one-stop solution for managing energy consumption from different places. People can now use their laptops, tablets, or smartphones to connect to other smart devices such as washing machines or air conditioners and control them. IoT uses perceptive devices to reduce bills, enhance convenience, and provide better home security with the help of remote-controlled devices. 

#4 Gaining Performance Insights Based on Machine Learning

Energy companies produce chunks of data daily, which require a slick and streamlined channel for ease of processing, control, and management. This is where IoT meets Machine Learning to drive a change. Machine Learning, in combination with Big Data Analytics, is impressively effective in leveraging the high-volume data collected via sensors and processing these into critical performance insights that provide for predictive asset management and waste control. 

Final Words

The IoT has started to take a greater shape in catalyzing improved efficiencies in the energy sector. Given the growth potential it has shown, the IoT might be recognized as a key strategic area in various energy companies to ensure more care, resilience, and prudence than ever before. Kellton Tech’s Internet of Things practice successfully delivers IoT solutions right from integrating the sensors to deriving insights and choosing the suitable platform to the energy sector. We enable them to seize the current business needs and open up a new era of economic growth and competitiveness.

To learn more about our IoT solutions, click here.

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