|Siemens lab / Photo by: Robert Fruehauf via Shutterstock|
The Internet of Things is an ecosystem that interconnects autonomous vehicles, smart devices and smart cities in a secured, connected service. But Siemens is developing a new platform that may open the Internet of Energy. The platform is called Sensformer, designed to track down the status of owned transformers anywhere and anytime. The platform can also be used to optimize the electrical device to accommodate operations. “You don't need a ton of big data to improve operations, but just a slim set of smart data – digitalization means connecting the dots,” stated Puneet Harminder Singh, project manager of Energy Management Division at Siemens. The digital transformer provides the following innovative features:
- Permits operation of transformers in different settings, such as in a power generation plant, in an industrial application or in the grid.
- Provides essential sensors to track the status of transformers like temperature, the low voltage winding current, and oil level.
- Enables data delivery through a wireless connection and a dedicated analysis app.
- Supports notifications that warn the owners of the status of transformers for possible technical issues.
According to Singh, the Sensformer is not very different if compared physically to a traditional transformer. The platform simply has connectivity features and sensors to give data transparency to owners, which can help reduce operating costs and technical risks. The data generated by the sensors are transmitted through a cloud service from the Sensformer connectivity device. Then, the data is transferred via GSM communications or an available Ethernet connection if the platform is connected to a cable. But the use of GSM communications is the most secure and robust for data transmission. In addition to transforming voltage, Sensformer can also manage power grid operators as an information hub. This assistance can boost decarbonization, decentralization, and digitalization needed in energy supply management.