In Digital Manufacturing

Guest blogger: Cavin Pietzsch, Vice President for Energy Efficiency, E.ON

Energy may be a significant cost for many manufacturers, but it’s also an untapped opportunity to improve operations.

With that in mind, E.ON has formed a partnership with Sight Machine to bring its digital manufacturing expertise to our customers and incorporate it into E.ON’s solutions.

With $42 billion in 2016 revenues and more than 40,000 employees, E.ON is one of the world’s largest investor-owned utilities, delivering gas and electricity to 33 million customers. We have invested more than $11 billion in renewable energy and operate nearly 5.4 gigawatts of renewable capacity.

Sight Machine’s expertise in the field of digital manufacturing is now being integrated with E.ON’s expertise in the energy industry, to develop digital solutions that optimize energy and core manufacturing processes in unison.

E.ON will use Sight Machine’s artificial intelligence technology to expand our own Optimum Platform. With Optimum, E.ON customers are able to visualize their energy flows and rapidly identify potential improvements. Through the partnership with Sight Machine, manufacturing and energy data can be turned into actionable information. Our customers will see improvements in operations, leading to increased profitability and reduced CO2 emissions.

With our combined technology, customers can improve machine uptime and utilization through predictive maintenance, while production bottlenecks, quality issues, and energy optimizations will be identified by pulling and analyzing available data from across manufacturing facilities.

Partnering with the leading manufacturing analytics provider meshes well with E.ON’s own path of dramatic innovation. In 2016, E.ON spun off all our conventional power production into a separate company, in order to focus exclusively on renewable energy, energy networks and customer solutions. Managing smart grids, the fluctuating power supplied by solar and wind, and rapidly-evolving energy storage technology require increasingly advanced analytics and artificial intelligence.

According to a new report from consultancy Roland Berger, utilities expect efficiency gains of more than 20 percent from AI in the next one to five years. As the industry shifts to renewables and smart grids, “the resulting smart-power ecosystem will need to process huge amounts of data to ensure that infrastructure is optimally utilized to balance supply and demand,” Roland Berger says.

Our data-driven approach has produced dramatic improvements for our customers. E.ON’s business customers have been able to cut their energy costs by up to 40% by embracing our energy efficiency solutions. We’ve also helped businesses reduce their carbon emissions by an average of 30%. We expect the results of combining E.ON’s energy management solutions with Sight Machine’s digital manufacturing technology will be even more dramatic.

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