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Industrial IoT a key force in reducing the environmental impact of the energy sector

01st November 2018

Research finds more than half of energy organisations are pursuing Industrial IoT to improve environmental footprint and efficiency.

Improving the environmental sustainability of their operations through the adoption of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technologies is a crucial priority for organisations in the energy sector, according to a new study undertaken on behalf of Inmarsat, the world leader in global, mobile satellite communications.

The research reveals that the two largest drivers behind the adoption of IIoT-based solutions across the energy sector are improving resource efficiency (61 per cent) and the monitoring of environmental conditions (such as air quality, emissions and environmental contamination) (54 per cent).

The research also highlighted the good news that many energy organisations are realising their sustainability objectives through the use of IIoT. Over two thirds (71 per cent) of respondents with fully deployed or trial-stage IIoT solutions stated they were achieving environmental sustainability improvements.

Access to reliable and resilient connectivity is essential for IIoT technologies to function, enabling the constant transmission of data to optimise operations. With many energy organisations operating in remote regions or offshore, where terrestrial networks are not available, satellite communications networks are key to achieving this and achieving the benefits that IIoT has to offer.

Reported early successes in achieving sustainability objectives have been seen in the implementation of technologies that aid pipeline monitoring, leak detection and operational efficiency. However, the research also uncovered that those organisations with unreliable connectivity were far less likely to be achieving improved environmental sustainability, reinforcing the importance of connectivity for successful IIoT deployments.

Commenting on the findings, Gary Bray, Director of Energy at Inmarsat Enterprise said: “The energy sector is faced with a multitude of challenges, tasked with reducing its impact on the environment and adhering to stricter government regulations, while grappling with a consistently lower oil price and increasing diversification towards renewable energy sources. Our research shows that energy organisations are adopting IIoT to help them achieve these goals, and that many are succeeding in this aim.

“However, it is clear that without the right connectivity networks, IIoT deployments won’t succeed in delivering the improvements in sustainability they are capable of. The global nature of the energy sector means that organisations need reliable connectivity to gather mission critical data from every area of their operations and analyse it in real-time, though patchy terrestrial coverage makes this challenging. With global and reliable coverage, only satellite communications offers the levels of connectivity organisations need to make IIoT a success.”

Inmarsat is a leading provider of mobile satellite connectivity for Industrial IoT deployments across the global supply chain. It has a proven and unrivalled track record of operating the world’s most reliable commercial mobile satellite networks, sustaining business critical applications for almost 40 years. Its award-winning services are enabling end-to-end transparency across the production, extraction, manufacture and multi-modal transportation of goods. Inmarsat owns and operates the world’s most reliable L-band satellite network offering 99.9% availability suitable for critical IIoT applications, rugged and energy efficient terminals, and low latency data transmission.  It is the ideal connectivity solution for enabling monitoring and automation applications in remote and hostile environments.

To view the research microsite and download the full report – ‘IIoT on Land and at Sea’ – visit: http://research.inmarsat.com/

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