What is necessary for everything that can be smart to be smart in the energy sector?

AleaSoft, April 30, 2021. The smart technologies are going to be present in all the technological advances of the coming decades. The energy sector is not going to be an exception and these technologies are going to be necessary in a renewable and decarbonised future. But data is not synonymous with knowledge. To extract knowledge and intelligence from the data, the scientifically‑based analysis and forecasting methodologies, which provide coherent and reliable results, are necessary, and they will be even more so in the future.

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The future always promises to be smarter than the present. In recent years, smart became the prefix of any technology that is expected to contribute to a better, more efficient and productive future. Although many times it is used simply as an advertising claim.

The concept of smart technology is based on the collection of a large amount of data through a large number of devices that can share these data thanks to the massive interconnection of all of them to the internet. Due to the availability of all that enormous amount of information, it is assumed that the devices will be able to make more founded decisions to act more intelligently and efficiently.

Although the collection of the information is usually done in a decentralised way from many smart devices, the analysis of that information and the decision‑making is done centrally, propagating those results to the devices in charge of carrying out the “smart” tasks.

The smart technologies are at the base of the digitalisation. They are the technologies that make it possible to collect and have available all the information that allows better decision‑making. The internet of things (IoT) or the blockchain technologies are all of them, together with the smart technologies, tools for this necessary digitalisation in the knowledge society.

The smart technologies in the energy sector

The smart technologies have a lot of potential in a sector like that of the electricity. These technologies may provide a solution to some of the great challenges that the electricity sector will face in the coming years. Among these challenges are the massive integration of the renewable energies, the introduction of the energy storage in the form of batteries or green hydrogen, the adoption of the self‑consumption and the distributed production.

All these challenges have a common requirement: the need to have a lot of data and in real time, to be able to properly manage the electricity transmission and distribution grids. All this information will be necessary to be able to predict in real time the renewable energy production, the consumption, the self‑production, etc. At each moment it will be necessary to predict what will happen in the next moment, in order to manage the stored energy, the backup plants or the flexible demand response.

Thus, finally, everything is based on having the maximum amount of information to make decisions in the very short term, but also in the medium and long term, for making informed and responsible decisions about the improvements and investments necessary for the future. To manage all this amount of data and generate the forecasts, the forecasting methodologies that incorporate the artificial intelligence are becoming increasingly important, such as the Alea models, a hybrid methodology developed by AleaSoft for the forecasts for the energy sector and that is capable of working with large amounts of data in the field of Big Data.

These future needs, but not so far away, did not surprise the electricity sector, which was talking about smart meters for some time, which are already present in practically all homes, smartgrids and even smartcities, a concept that goes beyond the energy management and that encompasses the improvement of the efficiency in all aspects of a group of people sharing space and services in an urban space.

The importance of having updated information

As seen, the importance of having the necessary and updated information is essential for the analysis and the decision‑making in an informed and responsible manner. The AleaSoft‘s online data platform, AleaApp, is a tool oriented towards this objective of providing the largest amount of information to the professionals in the energy sector and the ability to analyse it to extract the knowledge that allows a deep understanding of the behaviour of the energy markets in Europe.

The data on the platform are frequently updated and the number of variables available for visualisation and analysis is regularly expanded. In an online workshop held last March, AleaSoft showed the platform’s functionalities.

In the same area, AleaSoft will hold a new webinar next Thursday, May 13, aimed at companies interested in forecasts in the energy sector. In addition to the usual summary of the evolution and prospects for the energy markets, how the European markets are currently immersed in the energy transition process will be analysed. In this context, the long‑term price forecasts are essential when it comes to obtaining financing, through PPA, auctions or in pure merchant projects. The invitation to the webinar can be requested at the following link.

Source: AleaSoft Energy Forecasting.

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