We are living through a phase of continuous change and Zeitgeist. We may not notice it, but the natural sources of power are all around us, shaping the energy sector, and indeed our lives and our future.
The transition to renewable energy has already begun, but its potential and evolution coincide with another, much more obvious and visible revolution in the form of digitalization.
By combining the two monumental facets of digital transformation and natural resources, how we travel, communicate, manufacture, and generally live, is changing.
From a technical standpoint, progress in the wind space can be seen through the cost of production equipment and of power distribution, and the rise of techniques like modularisation over the past decade. The ability to remotely monitor, identify, track and fix equipment perfectly demonstrates the link between technology and clean and efficient energy.
With a bedrock of maturity established in how the world merges digital development with sustainability initiatives, the next step to achieving complete universal access to energy is optimization. However, there are still numerous gaps that need to be plugged in by the digital transformation era.
For wind to become a viable energy source on a truly global scale and guarantee universal access to power, the sector needs to learn from adjacent industrial segments that have already found their feet when it comes to harnessing digital innovation.
As with any sector maturation, we need to cross-pollinate ideas. To make the same quantum jump as the likes of automotive or aerospace, the wind sector needs to digitally optimize four critical areas – design, testing, manufacturing, and after-market service.
Applying digital transformation and innovation to each key factor in the process may sound straightforward or linear - but in reality, it represents an interconnected network of solutions that inform each other and must work together to realize the benefits.
To make effective change happen, there are four overriding technological approaches that epitomize the innovation challenge. These are modularity, the use of digital twins, adoption of digital product lifecycle management (PLM) which then enables a single digital thread as the fourth tenet. The latter pinpoint a need for one common data source where decisions can be made more seamlessly, information can flow more easily, and product developments can be informed by highly effective and conjoined quality management systems.
However, all four intertwine with three overarching pillars in the form of modularization, digitalization, and hybridization - which help organizations to speed up development and reduce costs by building in efficiency levers.
Digitalization helps to cut costs by addressing the connection of all value chain elements to streamline processes and accelerate time-to-market. Digital orchestration is key to enabling this, as it creates a thread from design to manufacturing, or even design to serviceability, to streamline the process and improve efficiencies and also ensure enhanced customer experience in current times.
Modularity, digitalization, and hybridization will be the tenets that industry development is built upon over the next decade. They dovetail with the innovation accelerators aimed at creating digital threads to complete this web of progression.
Wind power’s potential and status are long-established in the global energy landscape. Its viability as the optimum portal to achieve universal energy access now hinges upon mastering the network of digital transformation.
More information about how the wind energy sector is evolving, the role digital transformation can play in making it a worldwide success, and the technology that will make it possible is available in this e-Book by L&T Technology Services.
Learn more about the power of digital transformation technology and how it can impact many industries on June 24 at LiveWorx Episode Three: Digital Transforms Physical where L&T Technology Services is a key sponsor.