Unlocking the hidden value of critical assets through IoT
10 April 2017, News release from British Gas Business
Last month, analysts at global IT research firm Gartner predicted a 30% year on year increase in 'connected things'. No surprise then that an increasing number of businesses are looking to harness the power of technological advancements in a growing world of connected devices.
Centrica’s Distributed Energy & Power business is using wireless sensor technology from Panoramic Power to turn virtually any energy-consuming device into a smart device, giving users real-time visibility of their energy use and insights to help them boost performance.
Panoramic Power Managing Director Yaniv Vardi says, “We make it possible for devices and machinery to tell our customers how they’re doing: whether they’re performing badly, about to break, or putting way too much energy into simple tasks. We do this by gathering device level energy data in real time, and that’s where the value really comes.”
Up in the clouds
Panoramic Power is a global pioneer in energy management and has rolled out wireless sensors across 1000 sites worldwide.
Self-powered and wireless, the tiny orange sensors ‘snap and fit’ onto the outgoing electrical wire at the circuit breaker, tracking energy consumption and sending it to a cloud-based analytics system every 15 seconds. From here, data is sent to an easy to use app that can be accessed from both smart devices and computers, bringing actionable insights straight to the customer’s fingertips.
At a fraction of the price of a traditional energy management system, the system can also report on and send real-time alerts on anomalies, helping users to avoid breakdowns. It’s a technology that’s already being applied to a variety of industries from restaurants and retailers to manufacturers and universities with some sectors reporting savings upwards of 50% on maintenance costs and prevented downtime.
One of Panoramic Power’s customers is one of the world’s largest building materials suppliers and cement producers. The company approached Vardi’s team as they were looking to track, manage and report on asset performance at the equipment level.
“They were looking for something user-friendly that their plant managers could use to track their critical machines at remote quarries and identify system performance issues in real-time.”
In a matter of hours, sixty Panoramic Power sensors were installed on monitoring pumps, conveyers and crushers at three locations within one of the company’s manufacturing sites. Using data from individual devices, the team was able to quickly identify inefficiencies in system performance and make recommendations to improve maintenance schedules and operations. One month later, their investment paid off as the system identified issues with one of their conveyor motors and some out of hours demand from both buildings and plant. In all, they achieved a massive saving of over £200k in one year and the business has now deployed sensors across 70 global sites including a number of UK quarries.
“By monitoring their assets at a device level, we’re giving customers the tools that put them in real, proactive control of their facilities – with a level of visibility that simply couldn’t have been achieved before. That visibility gives insights that will positively impact the whole organisation, inspiring better ways of working and informing fast, confident, business-building decisions”, concludes Vardi.
To find out more about how Centrica helping businesses to take control of their energy, go to www.centrica.com/takecontrol. You can also sign up for a specialist webinar: http://www.panpwr.com/get-your-machines-talking/uk