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Why Are AI and IoT Crucial to Renewable Energy Adoption?

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Emily Newton's picture
Editor-In-Chief Revolutionized Magazine

Emily Newton is the Editor-in-Chief at Revolutionized Magazine. She enjoys writing articles in the energy industry as well as other industrial sectors.

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This item is part of the Special Issue - 2021-12 - Data Analytics & Intelligence, click here for more

This February, Texas experienced a mass power outage following a severe winter storm. The energy supply's unreliability caused fatal impacts, making government officials reevaluate their power reliance. President Biden's Build Back Better plan presented a solution for Texas's electric grid.

Energy professionals plan on transitioning the state's power from fossil fuels to renewable electricity. Artificial intelligence (AI) and the internet of things (IoT) support the transition to clean energy. Let’s explore the benefits of AI and IoT for the clean electric grid and its place in the power sector.

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The Clean Energy Grid

When President Biden took office, he established a national carbon-neutrality goal. His administration distributed $2 trillion to achieve the objective of improving technological advancements and green infrastructure. Part of the Build Back Better plan involves the clean electric grid's development.

Creating an emission-free electricity supply requires solar and wind farm expansions. Energy professionals must also improve technological support for renewable energy systems, improving their efficiency. AI and IoT can improve the reliability, abundance, and cost-efficiency of clean power supplies.

Support for sustainable power technologies and supplies comes from an overarching climate change reduction goal. In the U.S., about 75% of greenhouse gas emissions come from the energy sector. Most of the nation's electricity also derives from fossil fuels, producing emissions.

When the emissions invade the atmosphere, they minimize its stability and ability to regulate surface temperatures. Naturally, Earth absorbs solar radiation and produces heat, warming its surface. Then, the atmosphere collects and emits excess energy into space, reducing overheating.

Greenhouse gases alter the process by raising the atmospheric light-to-heat exchange rate. They also trap extra energy in the environment, filtering it back through the heat production process. Over time, emissions raise the global temperature, creating negative ecological impacts.

Renewable energy minimizes the enhanced greenhouse effect, improving environmental conservation. Though solar panels and wind turbines offer clean electricity production opportunities, their low efficiency minimizes their compatibility with the current power system. Using AI and IoT, energy professionals can produce enough clean electricity to support national power demands.

Predicting Renewable Energy Potential in Different Regions

The first way IoT supports the clean electric grid is by generating forecasts. Autonomous monitors predict local weather patterns, sharing the information with storage centers. During low-wind seasons, the electric grid may utilize higher quantities of stored power, meeting consumers' demands.

During high solar efficiency times, storage facilities may collect excess power, saving it for future uses. Energy professionals can also use the technology to determine the best locations for renewable system expansions. It may show installation workers the most productive sunlight and wind regions, increasing production rates.

Minimizing Stress on the Clean Electric Grid

AI and IoT can also help expand the clean electric grid by increasing its efficiency. One way to enhance efficiency levels is by reducing stress on the energy supply. Professionals and consumers can use smart devices to minimize power demands, improving the grid's ability to sustain society’s usage habits.

Residents can optimize their homes' energy use by installing smart thermostats, ovens, lights, and more. Autonomous thermostats connect to a building's heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. They use a Wi-Fi connection to access weather forecasts, adjusting indoor temperatures for energy efficiency.

They also minimize HVAC energy pull using motion detection sensors. If the IoT technology identifies a vacant room, it will turn off its connection to conditioned air. Smart ovens function similarly, improving the efficiency of cooking.

Ovens waste energy by frequently opening the door and overcooking food. AI and IoT systems can record the cooking process and measure a dish's temperature, streaming the information to the owner's smartphone in real-time or making adjustments to ensure optimal cooking times without wasting fuel.

Overall, smart renewables can reduce a resident's energy reliance, improving the efficiency of renewable energy supplies.

Improving Sustainable Maintenance Practices

Outside of smart renewables, environmental engineers and scientists developed AI specific to energy device repairs. They created advanced drones for wind turbine monitoring and maintenance. Human-powered assessments and repairs are dangerous and expensive.

Drones help workers conduct turbine maintenance safely from the ground. Professionals can also use the technology to inspect rooftops before solar panel installations. Solar workers can plan an effective installation after thoroughly investigating a roof's condition with AI technology that can identify trouble spots at a glance through machine learning.

Professionals are additionally using IoT sensors to increase the simplicity and response speeds of all energy-related maintenance. They place the sensors on various parts of a renewable power device, like a wind turbine's generator, effectively predicting repair needs. Identifying and responding to maintenance demands before damage occurs can minimize energy disruption, increasing the grid's access to abundant power supplies.

Supporting EV Transportation Processes

Society can effectively adopt renewable energy when it is compatible with modern technology. Many eco-consumers are trading their fossil-fuel-reliant cars for electric vehicles (EVs). The automobiles produce zero tailpipe emissions, making them more sustainable than other vehicles on the market.

AI can increase electric vehicle compatibility with renewable energy using charging station locating technology. The systems track a vehicle's battery range, finding solar chargers in the area when it begins losing power. Improving drivers’ access to renewable energy charging stations decreases their reliance on emission-producing power supplies.

Supporting Solar Battery Storage Technology

Technology supporting smart renewables also improves its storage capabilities. The Department of Energy (DOE) predicts technological advancements to storage systems as the clean electric grid expands. Its AI device is learning to study the long-term performance of various energy storage platforms to determine their compatibility with local grids and their cost-effectiveness over time.

The system may influence society's renewable energy adoption by increasing hydrogen storage efficiency rates. Hydrogen systems effectively hold excess solar electricity for long periods, increasing the national clean power supply. The fuel cell storage device connects to a solar panel, using emission-free electricity to charge an internal battery.

After the battery reaches a full charge, an electrolyzer splits the energy into hydrogen and water, storing the water for reuse. It then places the hydrogen in a container, holding potential electricity as a solid. When IoT devices inform the storage system of increased energy demands, the technology converts hydrogen into a direct current of electricity.

Researchers can use the IoT and renewable power storage models to produce more grid expansion technology. Using AI and IoT to support renewable energy adoption can help America and the world achieve its carbon-neutrality goal.

The Benefits of Smart Renewables

When communities adopt smart renewables, they can significantly improve and expand equitable access to electricity. Medical facilities may also use the technology to develop reliable backup power supplies, improving society's health and safety. Over time, emission-reduction efforts will improve atmospheric conditions and reverse environmental degradation

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