The importance of digitalisation in renewable energy

Why is digitalisation crucial for the future of energy systems?

R&D Entrepreneurship PERSEO Renewable energy

Digitalisation is increasingly gaining prominence in the energy sector and is the key to the integration of energy efficiency. A range of new digital technologies being developed today will help accelerate the expansion of renewables in the future, collecting and analysing vast amounts of data to make the system more efficient and carbon-free.


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El futuro de la digitalización

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Innovation ensures sustainability, efficiency and competitiveness in the expansion of renewable energy, which is key to achieving the energy transition. "Digitalisation is the hidden backbone of all the technologies we will need in the new energy system", says David Haart, professor at the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. 


We need to be efficient in the whole process of commissioning a renewable energy installation. For Professor Hart, there is only one way: "There is no other way to achieve this than to have digital technologies take over the coordination". Digitalisation also reduces costs and opens the door to meeting new needs in the future. "We will have more and more data that we will need to process", says Oscar Cantalejo, Director of Corporate Venturing at Iberdrola in PERSEO, our start-up programme.


At Iberdrola we have various projects to promote digitalisation. One of these is PERSEO, which aims to access external innovation and integrate new technologies into the company's energy production. "Start-ups are a cornerstone in the field of renewable energies", Cantalejo stresses. The programme has invested more than €125 million in innovation.


Digitalisation is already being applied in different areas in our company. For example, we have MeteoFlow, an integrated system for weather forecasting in renewable facilities. "We combine assets from different numerical weather forecasting models with the most advanced artificial intelligence algorithms to offer a highly accurate forecast", explains Luis Prieto, head of forecasting and advanced analysis at Iberdrola.


We also have Renewables Operation Centres (CORE), which are the centralised platforms from which we operate and control our facilities. "Handling all that data flow required a lot of technology and a lot of thought and engineering, and it is still considered one of the most cutting-edge projects in the world", says Guillermo García, head of global CORE systems management at Iberdrola.


It is important for the energy sector to invest in innovation, but policymakers also have a duty to accelerate consumer adoption of digital technologies. For Garcia, the important thing is to anticipate: "We need to think about how things need to move forward for us".

Source: Wall Street Journal Custom Content