RMIT University and Siemens announced the new Siemens – RMIT Digital Energy TestLab.
The Testlab is the only one of its kind in Victoria giving students and researchers the ability to simulate intelligent electrical systems for smart cities including national and local energy grids.
Harnessing the power of data analytics, IoT, simulation and the same hardware and software being used by new generation national networks, the future energy workforce can test and model real-world scenarios and optimise energy systems for smart cities.
This new initiative is an extension of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by RMIT, Siemens and Festo last year with the mutual aim of driving industry and workforce transformation said Jeff Connolly, Chairman and CEO of Siemens in Australia.
“I’m really proud to continue to work with RMIT and other Australian key educators to help drive better outcomes for the nation on critical topics such as digitalisation and energy.
Gone are the days of siloed responsibilities between educational institutions and industry. If employers want better outcomes from universities, then they need skin in the game in terms of collaborating on curriculum and tools for educators and researchers,” said Connolly.
Deputy Vice-Chancellor of RMIT’s STEM College and Vice President Digital Innovation Professor Aleks Subic welcomed this strategic partnership, saying that it opens new education and research pathways to one of the nation’s most critical topics – the future of energy for smarter and more sustainable cities.
“Energy impacts every industry and every home in Australia. Our cities need smarter
energy grids and systems that support our sustainable development agenda. Digital energy systems demand new digital skills,” he said.
“With a growing mix of energy types coming into the market, we’re focused on developing new technological solutions and new workforces to help progress our economy through Industry 4.0 towards a more sustainable future.
“By working in interdisciplinary teams engaged with industry, our students and researchers are gaining valuable soft skills in teamwork, systems thinking and problem solving, while using the latest in digital technology that will set them up for life and work.
“This state-of-the-art Digital Energy TestLab at RMIT opens the doors to Australian industry to explore what’s possible and learn by doing within a safe and supported environment.”
The Digital Energy TestLab will feature two modelling options for students: the national grid simulation that allows simulation of complex energy scenarios using the Australian Energy Market Operator’s (AEMO’s) data and a microgrid system that allows simulation of more complex energy flows from multiple traditional and renewable sources of various sizes.
Connolly said RMIT on its TestLab saying that energy jobs of tomorrow will need skills from people who can help progress it. “Australia’s progress towards net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 hinges on utilising new technologies and people who can harness these new digital technologies to deliver innovative solutions that are ahead of the increasing complexity of the grid.