Challenging perceptions and exploring the future

I like having my perceptions challenged. I see it as a means of growing and learning and because I know I don’t know everything, it’s generally not too hard to keep an open enquiring mind.

This edition, my perception was challenged in a big way when I read the article on communications [pg 29] written by my colleague Nicholas Nhede, in which he discusses the developments happening in the Australian City of … Darwin. This small city, far away from the major developments of Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane, has been appointed to a strategic position in the GoSmart initiative, which includes cities such as Taipei and London. Not only that, but this little city was named one of the smart cities of 2019 and was the first Australian city to qualify for smart city funding. Darwin is boxing far about its weight category.

Our focuses in this edition have been many – Asia, Australia, innovation and new technology – and I have learned something new from each and every one of the articles featured.

From Malaysia’s Tenaga Nasional Berhad’s desire to be one of the top 10 companies in the world [pg 36] to why energy security is more of a consideration today than ever before [pg 21]; how artificial intelligence is the new frontier [pg 46], to how Xcel Energy in the United States plans on going carbon free by 2050 [pg 26].

In each of the articles, we hear from professionals dedicated to delivering the best outcomes for their customers, but never forgetting that climate obligations now make up a large portion of any utility’s future planning.

As the roles of consumers change and distributed energy resources become the new normal on our distribution grid, we ask what the technology of the future will be. We explore the changing dynamic of electric mobility [pg 68] and moves by countries around the world to reduce emissions through the removal of petrol and diesel vehicles. We explore what that means in terms of the road infrastructure and how smart highways could make range anxiety a thing of the past [pg 73]. The plans to increase the number of electric vehicles on our roads significantly raise questions about charging, demand response and peak usage and this, in turn, brings us to the question of vehicle to grid technology [pg 70].

Speaking of new technology – what role will augmented reality [pg 78] play in the development of our utility, power, water or gas sectors? How will it change the way we teach, learn and identify problems, work remotely and overcome the issue of, almost literally, being able to be in different places at the same time?

We live in a time of such exciting development and opportunity – come explore with us! Until next time!