An Introduction to the Role of Embedded Systems, Cloud and IoT in Electrolysis Efficiency

September 5, 2023

As we find ourselves at the cusp of an energy revolution, the quest for sustainability is leading us to innovative frontiers. The production of green hydrogen, with its potential to reshape the energy landscape, is a beacon of hope for a cleaner future. Electrolysis, the process that transforms water into this valuable resource using renewable energy is at the heart of this transformation.

In the journey towards greener energy, the convergence of embedded systems, cloud computing, and the Internet of Things (IoT) emerges as a driving force, propelling us towards heightened efficiency in electrolysis for green hydrogen production. While the intricacies of our research and development are not fully unveiled here, the essence of our endeavours and the significant impact they promise are here for you to explore.

Schematic representation of the integration of analytics in the GH2 production ecosystem

Empowering electrolyzers with Embedded Systems

Embedded systems, often referred to as the "brains" of various devices, lie at the heart of modern technology. In electrolysis for green hydrogen production, the evolution of embedded systems has been a game-changer in the form of improved processing power within a compact footprint a well as energy-efficient connectivity with internet (Cloud). These innovations have revolutionized the way we monitor, control, and optimize the electrolysis process. A testament to this advancement is the capacity of a controller, akin to the size of a smartphone, to gather data from an entire 1MW electrolyzer.

When it comes to cells level data gathering, voltage and current measurement are very critical and challenging. There are various proven systems available for gathering voltage and current measurement, but a new industry needs new innovations. Existing systems which are being used in various industries for this type of measurement are expensive as well as not easily scalable, particularly if you go beyond a few hundred KW scale.  

Beyond the ordinary, we've embarked on a journey to develop modular, standardized systems that offer scalability, customization, and cost-efficiency. Our approach, summed up in the FCC framework - Flexibility, Control, and Cost - opens doors to operational freedom, supply chain mastery, and lowered costs, setting a new benchmark for the industry.

Cloud Unleashed: Storing, Analyzing, and Controlling

Cloud computing has revolutionized the way data is stored, processed, and accessed. When integrated with electrolysis, it enhances the process in the following ways:  

Data Centralization: Collected data from different electrolysis units across multiple locations can be stored in the cloud, facilitating comprehensive analysis and comparisons.

Advanced Analytics: Cloud platforms offer powerful analytical tools that process the collected data, uncovering patterns, trends, and potential areas for improvement.

Remote Management: Cloud-connected electrolysis units can be remotely monitored and controlled, enabling efficient management and maintenance, regardless of physical location.

The age-old debate of cloud vs. on-premises data processing is increasingly finding resolution through platforms like AWS IoT and others, which are redefining the landscape of data management and analytics.

IoT: The Fabric of Interconnected Intelligence

The Internet of Things (IoT) takes convergence to the next level by connecting devices, sensors, and systems to the internet, creating a web of interconnected data. In electrolysis, this translates to seamless communication between embedded systems, cloud platforms, and human operators.

IoT connectivity brings:

Real-time Insights: IoT devices continuously transmit data to the cloud, providing real-time insights into the electrolysis process' performance and efficiency.

Predictive Maintenance: By analyzing data patterns, IoT-powered systems can predict maintenance needs, reducing downtime and optimizing productivity.

A few years ago, when the renewable energy boom started (especially solar energy), industries realized the increased need for IoT connectivity.  Solar villages were expected to operate out of remote places where manual operations were expensive to achieve. Similarly, large scale green hydrogen plants are expected to operate in remote areas where maintenance is a big challenge. These examples illustrate a significant need for a robust IoT pipeline (embedded devices, cloud and connectivity).  

Here at Newtrace, we are in the process of building our own in-house IoT pipeline which comprises IoT devices with connectivity options (Wi-Fi, GSM/4G/5G), cloud data storage, data analysis in cloud using modern day AI/ML concepts.

Our end user will receive an integrated portal where they can track and predict hydrogen production rates, aided by a built-in predictive maintenance alert. This can also be integrated with upstream production, like solar power production data.

This IoT pipeline will also help Newtrace to analyze its deployed product and suggest optimum operating parameter to the end user. This data will be pivotal to Newtrace’s next-gen electrolyzers.  

A Bright Horizon Beckons

As we chart our path toward a greener energy horizon, our commitment to sustainable solutions remains steadfast. Together, we venture into a future where bits of data metamorphose into green watts of energy, where embedded systems, cloud computing, and IoT harmonize to create not just a process, but a promise of a sustainable tomorrow.

Newtrace is enabling wide-scale adoption of affordable green Hydrogen through their novel electrolyzer technology to help fight climate change and build a sustainable future for all.  Follow us to stay informed about our updates!

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