Siemens introduces digital services for energy

Experts say that the digital universe will double in size every two years and that by 2020 will reach 44 zettabytes, or 44 trillion gigabytes, containing nearly as many digital bits as there are stars in the universe.

By Siemens April 26, 2016

Experts say that the digital universe will double in size every 2 years and that by 2020 will reach 44 zettabytes, or 44 trillion gigabytes, containing nearly as many digital bits as there are stars in the universe (Source: IDC). With advanced analytics, this Big Data is being transformed into smart data, revolutionizing business models across all industries, including energy. As this digital revolution magnifies, Siemens is driving pioneering new digital services and expanding its current service solutions for its global customers.

The Siemens Power Generation Services Division has been advancing the development of digital trends, building upon its more than 20 years of experience collecting and analyzing data as part of its power diagnostics services. The company is deploying projects and devoting significant resources to unlock the full potential of this transformation. Siemens has developed a number of advanced, data-driven service offerings that combine big data with the company’s comprehensive domain expertise to support its industrial, oil and gas, electric utility and wind power customers. "Siemens Digital Services for Energy powered by Sinalytics," was officially unveiled this week at the Hannover Messe industrial fair in Hannover, Germany.

Siemens Digital Services for Energy are "intelligent knowledge systems" that are enabled by advanced algorithms, sophisticated data analytics and pioneering machine-learning, combined with domain know-how, to create new business models that are continuously fed by as-operated and as-maintained fleet and unit-specific data. This approach facilitates tailored service solutions designed to meet customer needs for operational flexibility, plant performance, condition-based maintenance, and more. These data analytics also contribute to the development of new and improved processes and provide valuable insights that can be used in future technology design.

"Big data is transforming our industry into a digitally driven, intelligent ecosystem," said Randy Zwirn, CEO of Siemens Power Generation Services. "Siemens is investing significant resources across its various businesses to successfully marry the physical and virtual worlds. With more than 300,000 devices already connected via our powerful Sinalytics platform architecture, we are able to put to work our vast experience and deep know-how to pioneer digital services that create game-changing value for our customers."

These advanced data-driven service solutions are enabled by Sinalytics, Siemens’ secure, scalable, industrial-strength analytics platform architecture, capable of integrating huge volumes of complex data. Over 300,000 devices are connected company-wide through Sinalytics. Beyond simply collecting this data or providing customers with a standalone software platform, Siemens is integrating valuable, insight-driven analytics with field service data, global fleet performance data, as well as data from other diverse sources (e.g. weather, fuel prices, etc.).

A vitally important element of Sinalytics is Siemens’ cyber security-by-design approach that not only allows confidential data to be collected, transmitted, and analyzed in a secure way but also means that cyber security is consistently integrated throughout all lifecycle phases. Cyber security is a critical business driver at Siemens and is thoroughly implemented into the architecture of Sinalytics. Key aspects of cyber security in Sinalytics are the provision of confidentiality and the integrity and availability of infrastructure and data as well as processes. Supporting concepts include the configuration of hardware and software systems using state-of-the-art cyber protection technologies, explicit proof of identity of all kinds of users, strong authentication, strong confidentiality protection of data at rest and data in transit, secure execution of analytical jobs, and auditing of all security-related events.

Real world outcomes with Siemens Digital Services for Energy are resulting from projects across the globe that are designed to support unique customer needs with innovative, data-supported service offerings. In South America, Profertil, an Argentine petrochemical company, operates a large and successful fertilizer plant in Bahia Blanca. To help ensure continued peak operational performance, Profertil conducts a major overhaul of its manufacturing and related components at the facility every 3 years, shutting down the entire plant to conduct repairs and maintenance. By applying advanced data-driven analytics and using Siemens condition-based monitoring, Profertil and Siemens are working together to align the required major servicing of the gas turbines to match this 3-year interval. This alignment means increased uptime of the assets, which can then translate into increased productivity for Profertil.

Digitalization projects continue to drive results for Siemens’ wind service customers. Remote diagnostics services are the genesis of these digital offerings as the company closely monitors more than 10,000 wind turbines globally. Advanced analytics are constantly evolving and expanding at Siemens’ Remote Diagnostic Center in Brande, Denmark, with new developments in areas such as vibration diagnostics and 24/7 alarms notification and management. Siemens is able to remotely address 85% of alarms coming into its Remote Diagnostic Center without the need for a visit to the turbines, which translates into higher availability and operational efficiency. Additionally, data-driven upgrades such as Siemens’ High Wind Ride Through, which is a software performance upgrade designed to allow turbines to continue operating at reduced power in higher wind speeds, are also providing measurable results. At the West Wind wind farm in New Zealand, the upgrade was installed on all 62 wind turbines at the site, and has resulted in a marked improvement of two percent in annual energy generation and a reduction in high-wind speed losses of 80 percent.

In the U.S. Siemens is working side-by-side with a major utility to support their initiative targeted to mitigate unplanned outage time of its steam turbines and generators when the units are required to be available to generate power. The project involves engineering evaluation of Siemens’ and the customer’s fleets and then installing special sensors on steam turbines and generators as needed to provide additional data for analysis that can then be turned into valuable insights for advance planning and avoidance of costly unplanned outages. Through advanced engineering analysis, increased data collection and analysis, and remote monitoring and diagnostics, Siemens Digital Services is providing the unique insights that will help the customer better predict operational and maintenance performance for cost-effective and flexible operations.

Original content can be found at Oil and Gas Engineering.