Siemens, the famous global technology powerhouse and largest industrial manufacturing company in Europe, has won the Digital Solutions of the year award for its Siemens South Africa Head Quarters Micro Grid Project at the Africa Utility Week (AUW) Industry Awards.
The event, which took place in Cape Town, South Africa, this week, is touted as Africa’s largest power, energy and water trade expo and conference.
Over the last 17 years, African Utility Week has grown to be the premier meeting place for the entire power, energy and water value chain.
This year’s edition of the event, which ran from May 15th to May 17th, 2018, showcased the latest technologies and services, including those incorporating fossil fuels, off grid, nuclear and renewable sources of energy.
The high profile affair offers attendees the opportunity to discuss real commercial propositions and streamline their purchasing process by connecting African utility, municipality and commercial decision makers with technology and service providers.
Siemens, which bagged AUW’s Digital Solutions of the Year Award, said in a statement that microgrids are the future of energy management.
A microgrid is a small network of electricity users with a local source of supply that is usually attached to a centralized national grid but is able to function independently.
“The traditional power grid provides reliable power most of the time. But when natural disasters or security breaches threaten the grid, the ensuring blackouts can be catastrophic and costly,” Siemens explained in its statement.
It is for this reason that organisations like Siemens and utility firms are working together to build resilient, flexible power systems called microgrids.
“Operating either as part of traditional grid or independently, or both, mircogrids are revolutionizing the way we manage our energy resources,” said Siemens, which is one of the world’s largest producers of energy-efficient, resource-saving technologies.
Siemens is also a leading supplier of efficient power generation and power transmission solutions and a pioneer in infrastructure solutions as well as automation, drive and software solutions for industry.
In fiscal 2017, which ended on September 30th, 2017, Siemens generated a revenue of €83 billion ($98 billion) and net income of €6.2 billion ($7.3 billion). At the end of September 2017, the company had around 377,000 employees worldwide.
The firm states that microgrids are important because they offer a scaled-down version of a centralized power system. As such, a microgrid can generate, distribute, and control power in a campus setting or small community due to the fact that they not only save money, but store and incorporate renewable energy as well.