Technology Record - Issue 30: Autumn 2023

153 INDUSTRIALS & MANUFACTURING US-based power company Commonwealth Fusion Systems (CFS) is working to commercialise fusion energy to deliver clean, limitless power to the world. CFS uses AVEVA Unified Engineering in the cloud to enhance the efficiency and collaboration of its engineering and design teams, which work remotely. Using software-as-a-service-based AVEVA Unified Engineering allows CFS to share vital 1D, 2D and 3D engineering data and enables teams to design and build simultaneously. The solution allows geographically dispersed teams to develop and maintain the detailed definitions of all the key engineering items involved in the design and build phases of capital project execution. With the help of AVEVA’s portfolio of industrial solutions, CFS’s engineering processes are more flexible and collaborative. Another strategic objective is to build agility and resilience. To extract maximum value from their existing fleets, power producers are increasingly adopting AI-enriched analytics, process optimisation solutions and other digital technologies. This empowers them to improve process efficiency without needing to extensively replace hardware or software. When businesses can do more with less, they simultaneously increase their profit margin and decrease their carbon footprint. Asset management and process control solutions are helping power producers create more proactive maintenance practices to achieve the resilience and agility they need to mitigate service and supply disruptions. Nuclear power plants, for example, face constant price pressure from different sectors like natural gas and renewable energy, while prioritising safety for the community and workers. Exelon Corporation, one of the US’s largest nuclear operators, used AVEVA’s PI System to transform its diagnostic process, so engineers and operators have a shared set of data to use for crucial decisions. By switching from time-based to condition-based maintenance, Exelon has seen a 20 per cent reduction in operating expenses, while improving its fleet agility and resilience. Power producers are also aiming to upskill, reskill, and empower workers. Whether the trigger is an aging workforce or turnover in a competitive labour market, reducing new operators’ time-to-competency has become a major factor in sustaining productivity. Power companies realise that enabling digital connectivity between people and their work environment is key to workforce empowerment, retention, and to achieving a continuous improvement cycle. The addition of cloud-based solutions leads to further gains in connectivity, and more importantly, higher business value. Enel Green Power leveraged the AVEVA PI System and AVEVA Predictive Analytics to develop an artificial intelligence-enabled, real-time monitoring and diagnostics capabilities for an 18-megawatt geothermal plant. This has enabled Enel to increase operational efficacy and reduce costs through early detection of critical events, while enhancing operational autonomy and ease of use through active key performance indicator tracking and proactive decision-making. Learn more about AVEVA's solutions for power and utilities: Douglas Nunez is global power industry expert at AVEVA Photo: Enel Green Photo: iStock/Ton Photograph