Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Siemens pilot tests IoT analytics on power grid

Steve Rogerson
October 15, 2019

Siemens is building a digital substation to pilot IoT analytics and applications for power grids used by Norwegian distribution system operator Glitre Energi Nett.
The installation complies with stringent cyber-security requirements, allowing end-to-end authentication and encryption based on certificates. This will help further increase reliability, optimise efficiency and improve the security of the power grid.
The complexity of the Norwegian power grid is growing due to the increasing number of electric vehicles and the expansion of the corresponding charging infrastructure. At the same time, grid operators are aiming to optimise the use of assets and the overall grid while complying with regulatory requirements and meeting growing demands in a sustainable way.
For this pilot project for grid IoT, Siemens and Glitre Energi Nett are working closely together to improve data accessibility and analytics to increase grid reliability and availability through early detection of field issues and risks, reduce maintenance costs by condition monitoring, and extend the nominal substation capacity at lower outside temperatures. 
IoT-ready Siprotec protection and control and Sicam automation devices will be connected via OPC UA PubSub, an open standard communications protocol, to MindSphere, the Siemens cloud-based open operating system for the IoT. The Siprotec dashboard cloud application will make previously inaccessible data fully available and help process grid data for the first time in the cloud with zero engineering effort.
The Siemens scope of supply encompasses the Sicam SCC visualisation system, Sicam A8000 controller and Siprotec 5 protection and control devices. In addition, wireless mini sensors will collect the temperature data of critical power components.
The substation automation system uses IEC 61850 station networks along with OPC UA PubSub communication to be connected to the IoT application Siprotec dashboard powered by MindSphere. Siemens will also be responsible for integration, installation and commissioning.
"By connecting grid assets and consolidating, visualising and analysing data in one central place, Siemens will help to improve data accessibility and analytics for distribution system operators," said Robert Klaffus, CEO for the digital grid at Siemens Smart Infrastructure. "Together with our customer Glitre Energi Nett, we will develop additional use cases in an agile approach while we deliver the core project. This is another advantage of having the data on a platform like MindSphere with versatile analytics capabilities: the solution can grow over time generating incremental value beyond the initial scope, for example by listening to vibrations of switches in action for preventive maintenance."
Jan Helmen, project manager at Glitre Energi Nett, added: "We at Glitre Energi Nett are constantly seeking new solutions in order to optimise both our operations and asset management. The cooperation with Siemens on MindSphere is an exciting opportunity for us to gain valuable experience with cutting-edge IoT."