In addition to improved communication, 5G technology will allow energy producers to incorporate renewable energy sources more easily into the grid. It will also enable greater use of smart meters on mobile devices, which will benefit providers as well as consumers.
2. Energy Companies Will Continue to Migrate to the Cloud
Energy companies are constantly creating and collecting vast amounts of data that can be harvested for many purposes. But the management, storage and protection of this data can be overwhelming for any organization.
Cloud adoption will likely grow for energy providers in 2022. The industry already relies heavily on IoT devices and is using data to enable innovative tools such as digital twins. The cloud is a critical part of such technological developments, and that trend will not change in the coming year.
3. Cybersecurity Will Continue as a Top Priority
Given the rise in ransomware and other cyberattacks, as well as the ever-changing tactics of cybercriminals, it’s no surprise that more cybersecurity solutions will be deployed in 2022 to address the threats. Governments and utilities are expected to put a greater focus on the development of innovative and resilient solutions.
Faced with a constantly evolving threat landscape, energy providers have little choice but to invest in security solutions that can minimize downtime in the event of an attack. As President Biden said in a July 28 memorandum on improving cybersecurity for critical infrastructure, “The cybersecurity threats posed to the systems that control and operate the critical infrastructure on which we all depend are among the most significant and growing issues confronting our nation. The degradation, destruction or malfunction of systems that control this infrastructure could cause significant harm to the national and economic security of the United States.”
4. AI Will Continue to Drive Innovation
In 2021, energy companies have already begun to use AI to boost operations. The technology has proved useful for forecasting energy needs, managing resources and efficiently storing energy. Going forward, it will be an invaluable tool in making the transition to an energy system that uses more renewable sources of energy.
AI and machine learning can be used to accurately predict energy prices and demand and to optimize energy consumption. The federal government is counting on these technologies to accelerate research that will enable long-term energy storage.
AI will also be a critical tool in balancing the many sources that contribute electricity to the grid, supporting much more rapid and efficient forecasting and delivery of power to consumers.