Transition to renewable energy is a fact, and IT in the energy sector is at the very center of these changes. There are many reasons for applying innovative digital technologies in the energy industry – and cutting costs, along with trying to be environmentally friendly, are definitely topping the list.
The non-renewable fuel crisis calls for efficient solutions that let people use limited resources more wisely and, preferably, switch to sustainable power. This shift requires investments but, in the long run, is empowering for economies and businesses. The bottom line may be providing clean energy that is accessible and affordable for individual users and lets companies cut costs and be more competitive.
There are many interesting uses of digital technology in EnergyTech, and this article will list some of the most significant ones.
Let’s see what it will look like in detail.
Table of contents:
- What is EnergyTech?
- How is technology transforming the energy sector?
- Technology solutions for energy and cost-efficiency
- EnergyTech – Codete’s experience
- IT in the energy sector – key takeaways
What is EnergyTech?
Climate change requires new technologies but also different business models and a novice approach to energy consumption, energy production, and energy resources. Luckily, there are many digital initiatives and cutting-edge energy investments that are transforming the power sector and energy infrastructure.
EnergyTech (or energy technology) may be boiled down to „an interdisciplinary engineering science having to do with the efficient, safe, environmentally friendly, and economical extraction, conversion, transportation, storage, and use of energy, targeted towards yielding high efficiency whilst skirting side effects on humans, nature, and the environment.”
Energy transition affects many fields and specializations, like the oil and gas industry, the renewable energy sector (e.g., by increasing the efficiency of wind power plants or cutting greenhouse gas emissions), power generation, and the energy market in general. Obviously, digital transformation concerns energy companies, too.
Some of the well-known examples of how emerging technologies are reshaping energy systems are electric vehicles, smart grids, smart meters, solar panels, solar water heaters, and wind turbines. These technologies are often not only innovative but also highly performant and cost-effective.
How is technology transforming the energy sector?
Technology is transforming all areas of life nowadays, and the energy sector is no exception here. Let’s see the most powerful trends and major technologies that are shaking the energy industry right now, such as AI, IoT, and Blockchain.
Artificial intelligence (AI) in the energy sector
Artificial intelligence helps dig through huge amounts of energy data, identify trends and anomalies, and forecast energy demand and weather conditions that influence the supply of renewable energy. On top of that, AI enhances the energy market by providing powerful support for smart grids, automating grid data, improving energy security, and detecting electricity theft.
The benefits of using AI in the energy sector are countless, with limiting energy waste and making the energy sector more effective and competitive topping the list. Increasing grid stability, as well as the efficiency of wind power plants, solar farms, and oil and gas companies, are other vital highlights.
Read more about AI and Data Science applications in EnergyTech >>
Internet of Things (IoT) in the energy sector
The applications of IoT in the energy sector are, to some extent, similar to those typical of AI. IoT technologies help monitor energy consumption in real time, which improves the optimization of power production and distribution so that renewable energy resources are used more efficiently.
Thanks to IoT, sustainable energy assets can be integrated into one infrastructure that includes things like energy-saving devices, smart meters, and smart grids. Powerful IoT solutions may underpin virtually everything in between energy generation and energy management, making the use of electricity more cost-effective.
Blockchain in the energy sector
Blockchain – a distributed ledger system – offers the energy market superb solutions in the area of controlling energy sources within the decentralized network and making them more efficient. Energy usage data, e.g., on energy transactions, is being monitored and stored securely and transparently thanks to this cutting-edge technology.
Energy use or market price real-time data can be tracked and recorded precisely, but the use of Blockchain in the energy sector is far more encompassing. For example, energy trading and energy supply may get decentralized, and transactions between energy generators and consumers can be settled almost immediately, with operating efficiency improved.
Transition to renewable energy
The world turns to renewable sources of power, which means producing clean energy that does not have a negative environmental impact and never runs out. Renewable technologies include solar energy, wind energy, hydropower and tidal energy, biomass energy, and geothermal energy.
Of course, there are some major challenges related to this area, like renewable energy management, supply chain bottlenecks, energy storage, and infrastructure issues. The initial cost of installations and land use may be high, e.g., for solar plant building, but the ultimate result – cheaper electricity and a cleaner environment – is something worth fighting for.
Technology solutions for energy and cost efficiency
Technology solutions for energy are beneficial not for the planet Earth only, but they bring significant cost cuts to organizations involved, too. In the case of individual users, energy efficiency measures can bring households 25% savings on utility bills on average, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
There are many technological solutions that help end users save energy and limit costs, and one of the major examples is energy-efficient buildings. They need less energy – and thus money – to operate, heat, or run electronics. This means savings for all users, and in the case of business ones – also increasing competitiveness.
Energy-efficient lighting and windows, smart thermostats that save energy by adjusting the temperature, solar panels, as well as modern ventilation systems are some of the technological solutions that help cut energy use and decrease costs.
Interestingly, there are even IoT-based apps that let you monitor your power consumption and the costs that are associated with it – and check how reducing energy use (or changing other factors) in your household could affect your electricity bills.
Smart buildings, with their sensors and actuators, let you collect data to avoid energy waste, e.g., by controlling the temperature within the house. If that’s real-time data, particular systems can be automatically adjusted, e.g., to the occupancy level of particular rooms.
Energy technology – Codete’s experience
EnergyTech is one of the areas of Codete’s expertise and one our company specializes in. Throughout many years, we’ve gathered vast experience in many major EnergyTech projects, e.g., in the area of green (clean) energy management, helping energy sector organizations adapt to the technology shift.
Let’s mention two of them:
Sonnen is a German business that assists its customers in becoming energy independent with self-produced, clean energy. The company specializes in enabling energy storage and connecting household devices to virtual power plants.
The Virtual Power Plant (VPP) technology virtually connects local networks of intelligent sonnen batteries to create a single renewable power plant. This way, sonnen helps provide clean, self-produced energy to its clients, enables greater energy management, and lets property owners cut costs.
Codete helped sonnen expand its business by modernizing the payment matching application and improving the invoice automation process. Cooperation with Codete let sonnen increase the set of products and services offered, as well as simplify adding new energy providers to already existing databases.
Unirac is a manufacturer of photovoltaic (PV) residential mounting systems. Those advanced solutions are flexible and versatile, appropriate for both ground and roof applications. Solar panels Unirac offers are installer-friendly, and clients can use renewable energy coming from photovoltaics fast.
Codete helped Unirac develop a customized web-based tool for designing solar panel systems. It underwent code reworking, comprehensive technical assistance, and performance improvement. The bottom line was a full tech stack update and successful app deployment.
IT in the energy sector – key takeaways
Information Technology is transforming the energy industry lightning-fast, and undoubtedly, that’s a win-win situation for all parties involved. The Earth gets relieved, and end users are happy, too, as energy saving also means cost efficiency – for companies and individual users alike.
The clean energy transition is a complex issue that covers many areas, including energy production, distribution, and overall management. Thanks to EnergyTech, they can get way smoother and more efficient, also cost-efficient.
Many cutting-edge technologies, like the Internet of Things, Artificial intelligence, Machine Learning, and Blockchain are involved in the process. Energy innovations help save the planet, but for average people and businesses of all sizes saving energy equals saving money.
Want to adapt to the digital transformation in the energy industry and make the most of it? If you need advice on how EnergyTech can help your company, don’t hesitate to contact Codete now.