Understanding the so-called "Data Science Dilemma"
August 18th, 2021
- Proxima Solutions GmbH is committed to taking full advantage of technology to provide its customers with solutions that support the analysis, planning, and forecasting of their operations for short, medium, and long-term strategic decisions in the renewable energy sector.
- To reach 2050 with a zero-emissions power generation mix, significant synergies between the industry and new technologies are required.
The electricity mix for 2050 requires a sustainable energy model that allows the efficient operation for power generation to meet higher demand. Looking at the facts, 2021 has been a promising year for the renewable energy sector in Europe. Experts predicted important investments that will strengthen the sector and enable greater growth. However, the recent report of the Working Group 1 of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), presented by the United Nations, has made it clear that the efforts are not enough and that it is necessary to end the use of fossil fuels by transferring their subsidies to renewable energies.
In summary, the path to achieving the environmental goals of the European Union for 2030 - 2050 is full of challenges that affect the management of companies operating renewable energy projects. Most of the obstacles can be overcome through the use of technologies oriented to make the most out of the data that wind farms generate, and get insights for better asset management practices that derive in energy production optimization.
Big Data, Data Science, Artificial Intelligence, and Machine Learning are the main interrelated concepts to overcome some of the industry challenges:
- Big Data, which enables the extraction and management of large amounts of data.
- Data Science, combines statistics, computer science, and mathematics, to extract and analyze the data to enable predictions according to observed behaviors.
- Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, through algorithms, used by data scientists to improve the quality of their predictions.
All these elements make part of a cycle that enables the extraction, processing, and sharing of insights.
The use of new technologies is a wake-up call that demands a change, in return, it brings the opportunity to improve the energy industry’s outcomes. Embracing Big Data as a competitive advantage can answer many questions and unveil valuable information. "The next step is to find the best ways to collect, process and transform the data into useful information to make strategic business decisions." - Polina Ananyevskaya, Proxima Solutions Lead Data Scientist.
At Proxima Solutions, we are confident of our data acquisition capabilities. We make a difference in the kind of data we recall and its purpose. "When we talk about Big Data, we can’t just talk about the quantity of data, we also need to talk about its quality, because that's where our real competitive advantage takes place." - Polina Ananyevskaya, Proxima Solutions Lead Data Scientist.
We have identified the most relevant criteria to be able to achieve quality in data quantity:
- Ask a question oriented to solve a specific need:
The first step when talking about using technology is to make sure we have a clear purpose for the usage of this data to develop and/or select the best methods to process it.
- This is where quantity and quality matter:
Big Data is about large amounts of data. However, making sure we have multiple sources of information and that they are of good quality, is necessary. "It is important to take care of the quality of the data from beginning to end, avoiding human and technical errors." - Polina Ananyevskaya, Proxima Solutions Lead Data Scientist.
- Identify the types of data by suggesting the best models:
It is relevant to know what type of data we are dealing with. The type of data determines the possibility to present successful models.
Big Data and Data Science require a multidisciplinary team capable of managing the data and maintaining its quality. "It's important to invest in the team, we need competent resources in every aspect. A huge cluster of powerful computers or a crowd of data scientists does not guarantee success, but it is sufficient to have a small but full team including highly skilled data scientists, data engineers, developers, and DevOps equipped with the adequate hardware and technologies." - Polina Ananyevskaya, Proxima Solutions Lead Data Scientist.
Back to the beginning, the renewable energy industry has a great opportunity to combine the best of technology and human knowledge to make a positive impact on the environment. We produce data every day that allows us to develop solutions and make better decisions. It's just a matter of how we use it and the different technologies we have access to.
Greater investment in the development of the sector is needed to accelerate the combined growth of technology and renewables. We need to encourage the use of artificial intelligence within the industry, which will require further research, training experts, and acquiring tools to facilitate the processes. "We need to make the most out of data, we need to use it because there is no point in just storing it, it would be a total waste, and there are many beautiful things that can be done with this information.” - Polina Ananyevskaya, Proxima Solutions Lead Data Scientist.
The team at Proxima Solutions promotes, preserves, and maximizes the synergy between technology and human knowledge. The use of Data Science, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, and Machine Learning has enabled us to promote solutions such as Windlog that benefit our clients by improving forecasts, reducing operating costs, making strategic decisions, and maximizing the potential of wind farms.
"The results achieved with Windlog have enabled us to demonstrate the power of data analysis to our clients, and they were surprised to discover the hardware errors already identified in our reports based on their data. Such examples clearly show the valuable impact of technologies developed by the team." - Polina Ananyevskaya, Proxima Solutions Lead Data Scientist.
Proxima Solutions GmbH is a German Company founded in 2018 aiming to digitize the energy transition. Combining artificial and human intelligence, data science, and renewable energy expertise, we offer a suite of software tools that enables asset owners and asset managers to increase energy production from their wind and hydro energy plants.
We can also support our customers with a set of services (plant supervision, predictive diagnostics, asset management), where we optimize asset performance and preserve asset lifetime by implementing the recommendations from our advanced analytics and AI predictive algorithms.