Home Energy conservation Artificial intelligence and machine learning are now an integral part of smart power solutions

Artificial intelligence and machine learning are now an integral part of smart power solutions


By Raj Darji, CEO and Founder, Aarav Solutions

The utility space is changing rapidly today. It moves from a conventional and highly regulated environment to a technology-driven market in the blink of an eye. Collecting data and optimizing the workforce is a constant struggle. Smarter infrastructure optimization has increased monumentally with the onset of the pandemic, along with reliance on technology. There is an urgent need to balance supply and demand where artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) can come into play.

Data science, aided by AI and ML, has led to several positive developments in the field of utilities. Digitization can significantly increase utility profitability by using smart meters for networks, digital productivity tools and automating back-office processes. According to one study, companies can increase their profitability by 20-30%. Digital measurement is reconnecting organizations to do better through a fundamental reboot of how work gets done.

Customer service and AI
According to a Gartner report, most utility AI investments most often go into customer service solutions. Some 86% of the utilities surveyed used AI in their digital marketing, call center support and customer application. This is a testament to investments in AI and ML that can deliver high ROI by improving speed and efficiency, thereby improving customer experience. Customer-facing AI is a low-risk investment because customer requests are often repetitive, such as billing requests, payments, new connections, etc. AI can deliver tangible results to businesses on the customer service front.

Automatic meters for energy conservation
Manual entry and billing systems are not only time-consuming, but also error-prone and expensive. The Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) system has made a breakthrough. AMR allows large infrastructures to easily collect data and also analyze cost centers and opportunities for improving the efficiency of the natural gas, electricity, water, etc. sectors. It offers real-time billing information for budgeting. It has the advantage of being precise compared to manual entry. Additionally, it is capable of storing data at distribution points within utility networks. This can be easily accessed over a network using devices such as mobiles and handhelds. Energy consumption can be tracked to aid conservation and stop energy theft.

Predictive analysis Enable smart grid options
By taking advantage of new era technologies, utilities can benefit immensely. These technologies in the energy sector contribute to the construction of smart electricity networks. The energy sector is highly dependent on a complex infrastructure that can face multiple problems due to maintenance issues, weather conditions, system or equipment failure, demand peaks and disruptions. misallocation of resources. Overloading and congestion lead to a considerable waste of energy. Grids produce huge data that helps mitigate risk when used correctly. With the large volume of data constantly flowing through the grid, it can be difficult to collect and aggregate it. Operators could miss this information, which could lead to malfunctions or failures. With the help of ML algorithms, information can be obtained for the smooth running
grid operation. Automated data management can help maintain data accurately.

With the help of predictive analytics, operators can predict network outages before customers are affected and also create greater customer satisfaction and mitigate any financial loss.

Efficient and sustainable energy consumption
These allow better allocation of energy for consumption as it would be based on demand and can save resources and help in load management and forecasting. AI can also address vegetation issues by analyzing operational data or statistics. This can help proactively deal with wildfires. Thus, it can become a sustainable and efficient system. To overcome weather-related maintenance issues, automation helps receive signals and prioritize areas that need attention to save money and reduce downtime. To achieve this, the industry is embracing ML capabilities because they need quick and easy access to automation.

The construction sector is also a big beneficiary of the solutions. Building codes and architecture are often colossal challenges that take a long time to overcome. But there are solutions that help builders and developers test these apps seamlessly without any system downtime. By integrating AI and ML into data management platforms, developers allow data science teams to spend enough time innovating and much less time on maintenance. With increasing computing power and cloud accessibility, deep learning algorithms can train faster while optimizing their cost. AI and ML can impact different aspects of business.

AI can improve the quality of human jobs by facilitating remote work. They can help with data collection and analysis and also provide actionable insights. Data analytics platforms can shed light on areas of inefficiency and help vendors cut costs.
Although digital transformation can seem daunting, its opportunities go far beyond the associated costs and risks. Gradually, all public services will undergo digital transformation as it has started to take root in industrial sectors. This AI-driven transformation will improve productivity and revenue gains, make networks more reliable and secure, accelerate customer acquisition, and facilitate entry into new business areas.

Globally, the digital utility market is growing at a CAGR of 11.7% for the period from 2019 to
2027. In 2018, the revenue generated globally for the digital utilities market was $141.41 billion and is expected to reach $381.38 billion by 2027 according to a study by ResearchAndMarkets.com. As the industry evolves, the benefits of AI and ML will come into play and lead to smarter networks, efficient operations and higher customer satisfaction. Companies that are able to take advantage of this opportunity will be prepared for future challenges that may emerge in the market.