Disruptive innovation has arrived to support our next generation power grid. These innovations provide increased opportunity for intelligence and connectivity for the management of power distribution in our power critical facilities. In truth, connectivity and intelligence have long been available; intelligent electronic devices (IEDs) are the nervous system to any electrical network – relays, circuit breakers, meters, PLCs and RTUs all work together today. The disruptive innovation that is poised to revolutionize our power grid involves analytics, machine learning, digital twins, cybersecurity, and pervasive sensors to monitor conditions in more detail and in more resolution than ever before.
The fact is, as facilities are built or updated, innovative technologies are inherently installed. Schneider Electric Chairman/CEO, Jean Pascal Tricoire has committed to developing a future range of products that is “100% Connectable”, meaning connectivity and intelligence will truly be possible from plant to plug. Meanwhile, complexity to electrical system design brought by the drive for more sustainable use of energy, integration of renewable or backup power sources, and a growing reliance on automation to improve operational efficiencies require integration of connectable equipment with management software.
Why does this matter to me?
If you manage an organization that uses electrical power to manufacture products, process materials, or operate business-critical functions. Then these innovations offer an opportunity to increase safety, improve business continuity, reduce energy costs while achieving sustainability and compliance goals.
If you work in with electrical distribution (designing solutions, manufacturing panels, installing equipment, or auditing infrastructure), or if you work with automation and control solutions. Then these innovations offer an opportunity to differentiate your business, increase your value proposition while returning more margin.
Ultimately, the market demand for intelligence and connectivity in electrical network equipment is driven by power critical facilities and prosumers, supported by the guidance of certified solution providers. As the operational value of electrical energy grows, more and more facilities view themselves as ‘power critical’, and they are looking for service partners to develop applications that leverage new technology to gain:
- Early warning of risks.
- Recover faster from problems.
- Reveal time & costs saving opportunities.
- Streamline their maintenance activities.
- Enhance equipment performance and lifespan.
A new White Paper: ‘Bringing critical power distribution out of the dark and into a safer, more reliable, and efficient future‘ perfectly captures the “next generation” power control and power management applications that are possible today by leveraging Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxure platform. Schneider Electric has Certified over 250 system integrators as Critical Power EcoXperts to deploy these solutions around the world. In addition to training and support from Schneider Electric, system integrators in the EcoXpert™ Partner Program have access to innovative products including their newest (and the world’s most accurate) Power Quality meter: ION9000, award winning power management software: Power Monitoring Expert & Power SCADA Operation, and advanced active power quality correction filters to help with mitigation of power factor and harmonic issues: Accusine range. The white paper includes real-world examples of how these “next generation” applications have benefited power critical facilities: hospitals, airports, manufacturing and process (Industry 4.0), along with higher education.
Watch this video to learn more about the Power Logic ION9000 power quality meter.
Return on Investment
Disruptive technology for electrical distribution is happening and occurring in three layers: connectable equipment and sensors, on-premise/cloud-based supervisor applications and advisory analytic services. System integrators that leverage these technologies along with their advanced skills end up proving returns on investment to power critical facilities by:
- Helping them to avoid a major power outage (instantaneous ROI).
- Delivering energy related cost savings such as bill optimization, energy use reduction, waste or identification. (6 months – 2 years)
- Providing maintenance related savings such as predictive intervention, extended equipment life to automated/continuous remote monitoring and alarming. (2 years)
The critical power distribution white paper goes into detail on these topics and is worth the read.
What has been your experience with deploy new/digital technology in an electrical distribution network?