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Advances in Utility Digitalization - Digital Twins, AR, and AI

Bhagvan Kommadi's picture
Founder of First Quantum Computing Startup in India Architect Corner

Bhagvan Kommadi is the Founder of Architect Corner - AI startup and has around 20 years of experience in the industry, ranging from large-scale enterprise development to help incubate software...

  • Member since 2019
  • 14 items added with 17,790 views
  • Oct 27, 2021

This item is part of the Advances in Utility Digitalization - October 2021 SPECIAL ISSUE, click here for more

In utility industry, you can simulate detailed ‘what if’ scenarios related to planning using digital twins. What If analysis helps in managing the investment and CAPEX planning. ML,AI, and Digital twins help in simulating the planning of fleet, capacities, downtime for different scenarios. ML and AI are used for predicting the failures and risk in asset and factory management. These technologies help in cutting down cost downtime using techniques such as preventive repair, and asset replacement.

ABI research predicts about AR that by 2022, 18$ billion will be the energy and utility sector revenue for Augmented Reality. To stay competitive, utility Industry is adopting new technologies to overcome problems like workforce retirement, aging facilities, legacy systems, and new regulations. The complex problem is the aging facilities which are more than 25 years old. Many companies are upgrading their systems to the latest technologies.Augmented realty  overlays digital information upon the realty using mobile devices. The digital info can be realty environment shown in live or offline mode.

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Augmented Reality is being used in utility industry in areas mentioned below:

  • Asset Maintenance
  • Equipment Maintenance
  • Remote Assistance
  • Employment Training
  • Operational Safety Equipment
  • Expert knowledge access
  • Asset visualization
  • Supply chain logistics
  •  Asset location and inspection
  • Situational awareness

The benefits are mentioned below:

  • cut down in service expenses
  • service time reduction
  • decrease in Accident Risk
  • training Expenses reduction
  • training Time reduction

Now let us look at digital twins which are used in modeling the environment of the facility and the behavior. They can be used in form anywhere and they can simulate the remote real objects. In utility industry, digital twin can simulate the below:

  • physical generation
  • transmission
  • distribution assets
  • customer consumption of power

The use cases for digital twins are:

  • project design
  • construction
  • operations
  • asset maintenance
  • testing of control and safety system
  • market regulations
  • operator training
  • maintenance and planning of electric utilities
  • equipment sizing
  • equipment behavior prediction

Now let us look at machine learning and AI and how they help in energy digitalization.

In utility industry, AI and ML are used for customer engagement, alternate energy management, and quality improvement. New business models are evolving in the utility industry due to the adoption of AI and ML.New class of energy source is emerging called prosumers. Prosumers are the companies and residents who are generating alternate form of energy.

 AI and ML  is used in energy industry in the following areas:

  • customer satisfaction improvement
  •  customer engagement improvement
  • regulatory compliance improvement
  • better transmission planning
  • distribution planning improvement
  • revenue generating electrification opportunities
  • electric vehicles adoption
  • energy disaggregation
  • providing actionable information

Digital Twins, AI and AR are being adopted in utility industry and these technologies are improving the operational efficiencies and employee protection. These technologies are not cutting edge technologies now, they have generated plethora of opportunities in the utility industry.


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Bhagvan Kommadi's picture
Thank Bhagvan for the Post!
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