Power company Agder Energi had been running a successful business in Norway for decades. But when its customers began implementing technological advances like rooftop solar panels and plugging in more electric vehicles, it was time for one of the country’s largest energy groups to join the revolution.
“The fourth industrial revolution is about connecting things together,” says Rune Hogga, Agder Energi’s flexibility program manager. “We now can collect data from millions of sensors in our systems, in our grid, in our production, and we can use this data to make new products, make decisions and manage our business in a whole new way.”
The company partnered with Microsoft to launch the Smart Grid Pilot Program, an Azure solution that helped Agder Energi identify ways to operate the grid more efficiently and interact with customers to help reduce the load on specific components of the grid.
“We are in the middle of a transformation of the utilities sector,” says Geir Magne, Agder Energi’s DMS system manager. “It will be more customer focused. A customer can place solar PV on his rooftop and then supply back into the grid and by that, they could help us as a power company to become more efficient in many ways and that will also help the customer.”