The Impact of Mobile Technology in the Energy Sector
Many of the players in the energy industry, big and small, have had to deal with the organization of invoices, vehicles, safety tickets, and workplace incidents without a quick and effective way of doing so. Without a streamlined and efficient certificate management tool, the effectiveness of a work site can be constrained. As regulation of workplace safety standards increase, site managers have been forced to endure more severe scrutiny while continuing to use traditional (yet inefficient) methods for organizing and maintaining records. Despite rapid increases in mobile technology and the simplification of similarly complex logistical practices, the energy sector has not been provided with a solution to this problem.
Fatal Work Injuries on the Rise
The increase in attention being paid to these issues is with good reason. With a recently reported 774,611 incidents across Canada (according to the AWCBC), site managers and higher-ups are recognizing the importance of workplace safety.
In the US, some of the fatal work injury statistics are also very frightening, with about 1,500 deaths in the mining, forestry/agriculture, and construction industries alone (2011). From a brass-tax perspective, it is also costly for firms that have to deal with on-site incidents and fatalities. In the US, an estimated $250 billion was spent on dealing with work-related injuries and illnesses, an increase of $33 billion since 1992. These sobering incident and fatality rates have lead to an increase in the development of work-site safety tools that help create a safer work environment for workers, managers and anyone visiting an active work-site.
Salus Innovations is one of the firms that has developed an easy and mobile way to streamline the process for companies maintaining their Certificate of Recognition. Salus has identified the top priorities for work-site safety/efficiency and created a user-friendly and intuitive application for both smartphones and tablets. The Salus mobile application provides site managers with four features that consolidate all aspects of safety and efficiency, including a ticket tracker, a safety feature, an invoicing system, and a maintenance feature.
As the issue of safety becomes more of a concern for business owners, it will be interesting to see how mobile technology steps up as a solution to many of the problems that work-site based firms are facing.
Source: Salus Innovations
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Major move forward for UK’s nascent marine energy sector
Although the industry is small and the technologies are limited, marine-based energy systems look to be taking off as “the world’s most powerful tidal turbine” begins grid-connected power generation at the European Marine Energy Centre.
At around 74 metres long, the turbine single-handedly holds the potential to supply the annual electricity demand to approximately 2,000 homes within the UK and offset 2,200 tonnes of CO2 per year.
Orbital Marine Power, a privately held Scottish-based company, announced the turbine is set to operate for around 15 years in the waters surrounding Orkney, Scotland, where the 2-megawatt O2 turbine weighing around 680 metric tons will be linked to a local on-land electricity network via a subsea cable.
How optimistic is the outlook for the UK’s turbine bid?
Described as a “major milestone for O2” by CEO of Orbital Marine Power Andrew Scott, the turbine will also supply additional power to generate ‘green hydrogen’ through the use of a land-based electrolyser in the hopes it will demonstrate the “decarbonisation of wider energy requirements.”
“Our vision is that this project is the trigger to the harnessing of tidal stream resources around the world to play a role in tackling climate change whilst creating a new, low-carbon industrial sector,” says Scott in a statement.
The Scottish Government has awarded £3.4 million through the Saltire Tidal Energy Challenge Fund to support the project’s construction, while public lenders also contributed to the financial requirements of the tidal turbine through the ethical investment platform Abundance Investment.
“The deployment of Orbital Marine Power’s O2, the world’s most powerful tidal turbine, is a proud moment for Scotland and a significant milestone in our journey to net zero,” says Michael Matheson, the Cabinet Secretary for Net-Zero, Energy and Transport for the Scottish Government.
“With our abundant natural resources, expertise and ambition, Scotland is ideally placed to harness the enormous global market for marine energy whilst helping deliver a net-zero economy.
“That’s why the Scottish Government has consistently supported the marine energy sector for over 10 years.”
However, Orbital Marine CEO Scott believes there’s potential to commercialise the technology being used in the project with the prospect of working towards more efficient and advanced marine energy projects in the future.
“We believe pioneering our vision in the UK can deliver on a broad spectrum of political initiatives across net-zero, levelling up and building back better at the same time as demonstrating global leadership in the area of low carbon innovation that is essential to creating a more sustainable future for the generations to come.”
The UK’s growing marine energy endeavours
This latest tidal turbine project isn’t a first for marine energy in the UK. The Port of London Authority permitted the River Thames to become a temporary home for trials into tidal energy technology and, more recently, a research project spanning the course of a year is set to focus on the potential tidal, wave, and floating wind technology holds for the future efficiency of renewable energy. The research is due to take place off of the Southwest coast of England on the Isles of Scilly