Digitisation of energy sector relies upon collaboration with local manufacturers

National Energy Resource Australia (NERA) and Innovation Central Perth have announced a new partnership to develop Australian supply chains for the digitisation of the energy resources sector.

Utilising advanced sensors to identify problems and find cost savings, the partnership will utilise Innovation Central’s Wireless Industrial Sensor Environment (WISE) Program, which develops low cost, battery powered wireless sensors for asset management.

“NERA is pleased to support the WISE Program and similar initiatives that can help streamline the adoption of innovative, cutting-edge solutions for the benefit of Australia’s energy resources sector and the broader economy, but also to leverage Australian innovation into global supply chains and create new value and job opportunities,” said NERA CEO, Miranda Taylor.

As a collaboration between Cisco, Curtin University, Woodside, and Data61, the program aims to support the widespread deployment of sensor technologies, built on Australian innovation.

“WISE offers a unique open collaboration format to its members, which includes a mix of industry and end-user organisations, technology providers, and research organisations,” said Tom Goerke, Cisco’s lead for co-innovation centres in Australia.

Utilising existing infrastructure at Innovation Central Perth, and at Curtin University, energy and resources businesses will be able to test and experiment with sensor technology, and find partners to install and manufacture the sensors they need.

“The program taps into a broad resource of expertise and talent from ICP’s partners and other WISE members, including from NERA, a member and project partner who collaborates right across the energy resources sector,” said Goerke.

As technological advances, both locally and internationally, produce a new range of sensors which can track business processes, the resources and energy sector is poised to become a major purchaser of these systems as it looks for efficiencies, as Taylor highlighted.

“With the emergence of technologies such as cloud computing, machine learning, artificial intelligence and big data, our sector has the opportunity to improve the operation and maintenance of assets by cost-effectively deploying IIoT technology.”