Lead speaker: Geoff Zeiss, Editor-Buildings and Energy, Geospatial Media and Comms
Growing population, increasing urbanization and environmental concerns are putting a strain on existing infrastructure including electricity and other energy networks, water and wastewater, road and rail, airports and seaports. It is estimated that an investment in infrastructure of between $24 to 53 trillion will be required worldwide over the next two decades. Governments are increasingly devoting their limited resources to services, so much of this investment will have to come from the provate sector which will drive increased returns on investment (ROI) if infrastructure is going to attract the private investors it requires. This will focus the construction industry, designers, engineers, architects, and construction contractors on improved productivity in an industry where productivity has stagnated in the US, EU, Japan and Korea over the past decades. The convergence of building information modeling (BIM), new geospatial data and technology such as LiDAR, and 3D visualization is changing how we design, buld and operate and maintain buildings and infrastructure and is resulting in increased efficiency and reduced risk. Not only is this trend leading to improved efficiency in the $7 trillion construction industry, but by enabling modeling entire cities it is leading to a more holistic approach to the challenges of increased population and urbanization.
Jan van Gelder, Information Manager, Alliander, The Netherlands
Jan van Gelser gave an overview of how Alliander successfully consolidated four different GIS database and software environments including Smallworld, GFIS, Oracle and DB2 into a single web-based geoservices environment for managing Alliander's gas and electricity networks. Alliander took a data-centric approach that focused on three types of data, thematic, reference, and asset data and made all of these accessible over the web via OGC standards-based (WMS, WFS, KML) geoservices.
Phil Mannell, Director, Enbridge Gas Distribution, Canada
Phil Mannell outlined how Canada's largest gas distribution company Enbridge evolved geospatial technology from mylar plates in 1998. Enbridge first focussed on core GIS in the early 2000s, he moved to enterprise gis in the late 2000s, and is now treating GIS as a platform, which enables Enbridge to identify new business units/groups and their common tasks that can benefit from a map-based application. With GIS as a platform Enbridge found that they can rapidly develop lightweight, focused maps and apps to support business processes including conducting proof of concepts and pilots to establish the business benefits. This results in less risk and shorter implementation durations with from 10 to 15 weeks turnaround time for new applications.
Brian Soliday, Senior Vice President, ikeGPS, UK
Brian Soliday showed how a handheld device incoportating a GPS with earth station support, a laser range finder, a digital camaera and a notepad can transform field surveys resulting in field staff productivity improvement of up to 125 % and dramatically reduced risk through improved safety. Brian enlightened the audience that the mysterious "ike" stands for "I know everything", which is approporiate for this multiple input device.
Harsh Sharma, Vice President, BSES Yamuna Power Ltd, India
Harsh Sharma discussed how GIS is used by a large electric power utility with about 1.23 million customers in Delhi. BSES Yamuna has leveraged a number of information technologies including GIS to improve the flow of information and implement analytics to create an effective decision support system. One of India's biggest challenges is the 30% of India's power generation that is lost to aggregate technical and commercial (AT&C) losses. The most impressive result of BSES Yamuna's investment in geospatial and other IT technologies is that they have reduced their AT&C losses by 45% over 10 years. Geospatial technologies enables them to identify and track specifically where non-technical losses are occurrring. This represents about 4.5 % reduction per year, significantly better than the 0.8% per year average for the entire Indian electric power industry.
Andrew Evans, Topcon, UK
Andrew Evans showed how vehicle-based data capture technologies can automate the field work that used to require field workers to laboriously walk pole lines. For example, the traditional approach to pole inventorying used to achieve about 65 poles/person/day. With mobile data capture technology Up to 800 poles/hour can be processed. The type of data that can be captured in this way includes Utility Pole location, Vegetation encroachment, Splices, joint Use, pole heights, clearances, and sag. Andrew presented results that showed that mobile data capture automation can result in 26% cost savings and more importantly in this age of the aging workforce 55% less time.
Dr Ioannis Manakos, Chairman, EARSel, Greece
Dr Ioannis discussed opportunities for EARSel's (European Association of Remote Sensing Laboratories) earth Observation products in the Energy sector. He outlined a number of earth observation products including land cover, land features, and sea features. There are many wasy that data is being captured these days including land surface and sea surface platforms for in situ ground and ground truth information, spectroradiometers and imaging spectrometers which acquire reflectance from various surface targets, and both active and passive sensing. Unmanned airborne vehicles offer a multifold range of solutions. They offer finer spatial and spectral resolution that can be used to bridge laboratory and in situ methods with with space-borne, wide coverage data. In the area of space-born sensors, there are a plethora of sensors deployed in various spatial, spectral, and angular ranges. EARSel offers sophisticated information extraction techniques ranging from simple regression analysis to complicated ray following models. Classification algorithms are available for land cover mapping needs for almost all possible targets and biogeographical zones. Change detection is another important application where the analytical tools are becoming much more sophisticated. During the last decade about 14 % of all papers in major EO journals address change detection. Renewable energy is another areas where earth observation data and technology is becoming critical in identifying optimum locations and assisting in forecasting wind and solar power generation.
Eng. Atif A Karrani, Managing Director, E;ectricity and Water Authority, UAE
Eng. Atif Karrani's presentation focussed on the implementation of enterprise GIS by the Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority(SEWA). SEWA supplies electricity, Water and natural gas to the population of the Sharjah Emirate, with more than 360,000 customers. The enterprise GIS system is used for managing electricity, water, natural gas, communications (FOC), and street light networkd. SEWA's goal was to enable all SEWA Departments to use GIS technology effectively for improving services to the citizen and responses to citizen’s request. This translated into a development objective to convert and integrate all available data into a standard format in a centralized data store accessible to all relevant departments. SEWA recognized that implementing enterprise GIS requires planning. In particular it is necssary to be prepared to identify and overcome organizational and technological barriers. But their successful implementation of enterprise GIS has resulted in GIS being recognized as an essential building block in SEWA’s application landscape.
Jennifer Oduor, Property Department, Kenya Electricity Generating Co, Kenya
Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) is the leading electric power generation company in Kenya, producing about 80 percent of electricity consumed in the country. Jennifer Oduor outlines some of the ways that geospatial data and technology are used by KenGen. These include geothermal field potential assessment to reduce the risk of expensive, unproductive geothermal wells; geothermal infrastructure planning to optimize the design and location of power stations, wells, steam pipe networks, and other infrastructure; management and monitoring of environmental impacts; conflict prediction and management with local communities to identify, in advance, the areas of possible conflict between the company and local communities due its operations and to plan for ways of mitigating the effects; and land acquisition to aid in providing information for purposes of zoning the land to facilitate purchase negotiation decisions. KenGen found that an important benefit of GIS is the ability to integrate data from a wide range of company sources using location as a common point of reference.
Jasper Roes, Project Manager, Geological Survey, of the Netherlands (TNO), The Netherlands
Jasper Roes described a project called CERISE-SG, which is a public-private partnership (PPP) to develop a foundation for efficient information exchange between different domains relating to smart grid. The project will focus on several use cases. The first use case is a smart grid information broker, a tool for mapping information relating to smart grid across domains. The simplest case involves transformations where there is a straightforward mapping between different terms in different domains, for example, kWh to Joules. The more common and more complicated case involves transformations with unequal semantics where it will be necessary to develop ontologies to provide a basis for mapping terminologies between domains.
Jene van der Heide and Martinus Vranken, Project Managers, Cadastre, The Netherlands
Martinus Vranken and Jene van der Heide of the Dutch Kadaster, the land registry and geospatial agency in the Netherlands, described a project to model a square kilometer of downtown The Hague with the objective of reducing and stabilizing energy usage and costs for the entire area. In the study area the buildings are large and mostly owned by the national and municipal governments. The Dutch Kadaster has assembled land registry information like ownership, monument status; building information such as year of completion, surface area, energy labels, energy indices; information on underground networks like heat networks, gas and electricity grids; together with government information on heat pump facilities, energy consumption of buildings, and available building facade area suited for solar panels. Combining this information provides a tool that the Ministry of the Interior is using to develop the busness case for a new form of energy supply that is reliable, clean, and affordable. The two main challenges have been to translate this information to fit the domain perspective of the Ministry of the Interior and structuring the information so that it can be reused for similar projects in the future. More about this project can be found here.