Most energy and technology enthusiasts are excited about the recently announced collaboration between Microsoft and Shell but what few know is the impact of the collaboration.
According to a Grid Beyond article, we see that technology has a vital role to play in the energy transition.
There are three pillars in which all the drivers of the energy transition can be grouped viz decarbonization, decentralization and digitalization (3D’s).
This would suggest that digitalization cannot be ignored during the energy transition.
The partnership, which aims to be a “model for how companies can work together to achieve their net-zero ambitions”, will see both companies developing a range of artificial intelligence (AI) software and digital tools to improve worker and onsite safety and curb Shell’s carbon emissions as well as that of it customers, and also advance progress on sustainable aviation fuels.
The collaboration is probably one of the most exciting things to happen in recent times in the tech and energy space.
Shell’s objective to create clean and efficient energy with Microsoft’s expertise in high technology, such as artificial intelligence (AI), cloud computing, and the internet of things (IoT) has resulted in a number of resourceful initiatives to minimize carbon footprints as well as to develop safer and cleaner working environment.
Likewise, Microsoft will help meet its own emission targets as well as lower the operating costs of its global network of data centers and processing facilities, by collaborating with Shell on implementing renewables other efficiency-driving changes into its operations.
It has also developed technologies to help keep Shell’s workers and sites safe.
A prime example of this is how Microsoft Azure powers Shell’s autonomous integrity recognition (AIR) system, which uses image recognition algorithms to detect when equipment or parts of a site are susceptible to corrosion.
Clearly, Shell has been a technology-driven company for over a hundred years but partnering with a business whose whole core function is the provision of technology, like Microsoft, gives it access to expertise and world-class infrastructure across all fields of information technology.
Its ability to leverage AI, cloud computing, and the sensor-rich environment created by IoT, in particular, is of huge value to the energy giant.
There are so many diverse opportunities that come with the cross network between tech and the energy industry, which makes the collaboration between shell and Microsoft such an exciting thing.
With the large decentralization that comes with the energy transition, there is huge need to balance demand and supply which will become complex for the human brain as well as manage the relationship between the widely distributed network.
Artificial intelligence solves this problem as large energy users can now control their generation and assets while predicting the production process and possible system failure.
More so, having smarter data analysis (machine learning) and advanced technologies help solve the battery problem that comes with electrification via renewable energy.