A most popular solution for energy efficiency improvement nowadays is still the plug-and-play, replacement of inefficient equipment. But the big bulk of energy used in the operations is still very much looming in the dark. Without looking into this “black box”, there is nowhere to devise any energy saving initiative to further reduce corporate energy use once those “low-lying fruits” were replaced.To succeed in this, we need to make the black box visible and ultimately control it, and fortunately, by leveraging on the design principles of Industry 4.0, we have a platform to do so! The two most relevant design principles of Industry 4.0 to energy management are namely, Information Transparency and Technical Assistance. Information Transparency refers to the creation of digital plant models with extensive energy relevant data mimic the real physical context that how the total input energy is used. This requires the aggregation of raw sensor data to higher-value context information, and performing very large data analytics. Next is to act on this information timely and eventually control the anomalous energy usage almost real-time.The MasterClass is based on a highly successful professional 40-hour “DieLernfabrik” (Learning Factory) course in TU Braunschweig. This course is first of its kind tailored for the Singapore industry, and will be conducted in a unique, immersive learning environment – Model Factory@SIMTech.
Realising that the key success factor for energy management is behavioral, the MasterClass focuses on the strategic issues, rather than technical implementation in energy management (which is covered by SIMTech WSQ Course¹). The MasterClass starts with a bird-eye view of factory and facilities as a holistic and symbiotic system; then quickly followed by a comprehensive discussion on the strategic issues in energy management. With these strategic contexts, the class turns into demonstrating how to leverage on the Industry 4.0 technologies, for example, the cyber physical system, for energy management, which is an emerging technology that ensures effective visualisation of energy usage and timely corrective actions.