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IoT development is shaping the future for renewable energy


30th August - Valencia.

As renewable energy sources expand their reach, the Internet of Things (IoT) and smart connectivity have established themselves as the catalyst for powering the green revolution. IoT solutions that monitor solar and wind power installations and collect valuable data, connecting micro-grids where non-renewable networks are unavailable are empowering consumers to take control of their energy consumption.


The growing presence of IoT in renewable energy applications

The dominance of IoT in the present market is unimaginable. Research shows that the global IoT in the energy market size is expected to grow to $35.2 billion in 2025, with the figure growing at a CAGR of 11.8% from 2020. 

As Renewable energy and sustainability technologies are among the fastest developing areas of innovation so the renewables market is becoming more mature. This maturity brings with it infrastructure challenges that make renewable energy embedded systems invaluable for remote monitoring, data collection and processing at the edge.


Using IoT, companies can now automate daily tasks and improve their overall productivity. For example, solar panels with IoT sensors can automatically identify favourable parameters such as height directions and position. As a result, people don’t have to manually change their direction to generate the optimum amount of solar electricity.  In addition they can:


  • Detect drops in the expected power generation immediately.
  • Anticipate and predict energy production. By accessing real-time and historical data, power generation can be predicted based on environmental conditions.
  • Automate the control of power plants. By having production data available, plant managers can automate their management, adjusting production in real time.
  • Optimise plant maintenance and safety through preventive and predictive maintenance. By means of preventive measurement of parameters such as wear and tear or temperature, the managers of each plant can guarantee the optimal operation of the machinery, avoiding failures and improving reliability.
  • Orchestrating complete supply chain management. Monitoring in real time the generation and supply of energy allows to know in detail the energy supply chain, detect areas for improvement and optimize management in general.


IoT involvement can also reduce operational costs, reduce unplanned downtime, and increase the reliability of renewable energy systems. It also helps establish control on energy output. 


Developing the IoT ecosystem for Renewables

The IoT ecosystem for renewable energy enables the collection, analysis, and transmission of data to improve efficiencies, provide better outcomes, and lower costs comprising sensors, actuators and communication technologies.  

Sensors produce, transmit and distribute green energy so that energy optimization and load management can be made possible in real-time. Actuators are devices that are used to convert a particular form of green energy into motion. Communication technologies exist in the form of Wireless systems connect sensors to IoT gateways for initiating end-to-end data communications in the environment.


Better Smart Grid and Smart Metre Management

Integrating IoT solutions and sensors in the smart grid distribution and power substations will enable companies to collect real-time consumer consumption data. Overall grid management becomes simpler as IoT enables the automated process, allowing the sensors to take decisive actions immediately if the need arises.

Smart switches can effectively shut down problematic regions in the case of massive outages. IoT can effectively control power overload and regulate it effectively without hampering the overall operations.

Residential users can add sensors to their own integrated systems, and IoT technology will make managing them easier. Using a desktop or mobile application, they can easily control their smart roofs, windows, solar panels, and so on, allowing them to control the electronics in their house remotely.  IoT smart meters can also be used to avoid many undesirable outcomes. For example, if your meters are connected to the internet through IoT, you can strictly monitor the consumption of electricity, gas, and water.


Emergence of the battery-less IoT

One of the biggest challenges to the advancement of renewable energy in the mass market has been how to find a cheap, efficient, scalable, and packaged energy storage solution using standard components and materials for collecting energy which can be used at a later date.

For many IoT applications and particularly sensor deployments batteries are the ‘go to’ power storage system. However batteries are primarily made from mined substances and resource-intensive extraction which are expensive and can be hard to recycle. 

There is a growing number of new companies that aim to extract small amounts of energy from environmental sources. These are focused on delivering power for the plethora of IoT sensors around today. 

Companies such as Everactive have developed a battery-less sensor that harvests energy from indoor and outdoor sunlight, thermal gradients, RF, vibration, and more. The company’s aim is to continue to shrink its battery-less sensors with each generation.

Whilst it won’t save vast amounts of energy or stop batteries from being widely used across the world at the moment, removing batteries from the equation cuts costs and reduces the hours that people spend replacing them. Using battery-less equipment in industrial and consumer settings could also greatly reduce the number of batteries that are thrown into landfills around the globe.


IoT in renewables will have unlimited potential

In the future, IoT will be a tool with unlimited potential, and will continue to have a huge impact on energy production. Renewable energies will become not just an alternative but a reality, capable of adapting, or resisting any setback and they will be much more sustainable and efficient. 

Increased use of renewable energy is going to require quality engineering to implement more useful and complex IoT applications throughout the market ecosystem. Finding the right skills is difficult and there is a lack of engineers throughout the global landscape. It is why companies who are finding it hard to complete a project are looking to expert companies like CIS to come to the rescue. CIS are seasoned specialists in finding the right skills in IoT for renewables and other  vertical markets with over 20 years’ experience in locating skills, for onsite, remote or hybrid working from around the world. Make sure your next project is covered call us on +34 963 943 500 or email us on info@cis-ee.com.