How hydropower plants can use tech to improve efficiency

hydropower GE

ABI Research report shared information on how hydropower operators can use technology vendors to improve plant efficiency.

#1: General Electric

General Electric (GE) is the leader in providing IoT technologies in the hydropower domain. GE recently signed a 14-year deal to upgrade the 14 gigawatt Itaipu hydropower plant, the world’s second-largest hydroelectric plant, which provides energy to 11 percent of Brazil’s population and almost 89 percent of the citizens of Paraguay. Paraguayan firms CIE and Tecnoedil will provide support for the project.

GE’s offerings include sensors, data acquisition, data capture and collection, data management services, predictive analytics, and an environment for software development. These features are designed around GE’s software called Hydro Asset Performance Management (APM), which comes with additional services and advanced control functions.

#2: Akselos

Simulation engineering firm Akselos helps companies in upstream, downstream, and offshore wind sectors using real-time data collected from sensors. Design teams will be delighted with the streamlined process that Akselos brings, while upper management will find the company’s asset management features impressive. The idea behind the simulation software is to test new processes and operating scenarios before making long-term decisions, which improves the life span of plant assets.

Akselos has created a structural digital twin for a hydroelectric power station of Irish electricity company ESB in 2019. With the digital twin deployment, ESB gained a full understanding of its level of safety and successfully avoided a very costly renovation of the main water distribution system.

#3: Atos

Atos’ Codex AI Suite analyzes data from hydro power plant sensors and meteorological forecasts to optimize the performance of hydroelectric assets. Insights that combine data from smart meters, mobile communication, and IoT devices can also help utilities adhere to regulations and create new services for customers.

There’s also the Codex Private IoT platform offered to utilities. Powered by Siemens’ MindSphere platform, this solution enables organizations to set up a private cloud infrastructure for managing IoT applications.

#4: Enel Green Power

Enel Green Power manages more than 54 Gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy. Enel Green Power holds the position as the world’s largest company operating in the renewable energy sector. Hydroelectric power plants can utilize the company’s Predictive System and Analytics for Global Hydro Operation (PresAGHO) to identify problem areas and failures at the power plant.

#5: Hydrotech

Hydrotech helps improve hydropower operations with industrial professional services. This is addition to the manufacturing high-grade products like hydraulics, generators, and IoT devices.

Plant operators that are slow to adopt innovative technologies will face disadvantage in terms of both operational competency and even their inherently green initiatives, ABI Research said.