Siemens Invests Big in Electrical Equipment and Software Services
Norwegian distribution system operator Elvia has deployed Siemens’ LV Insights X, a software platform for low-voltage grid operators that allows them to accurately model grid operations, reduce outages, and improve reliability.
Elvia, a Norwegian distribution system operator (DSO), is now operational with Siemens’ LV Insights X software platform as part of the company’s grid modernization, capacity expansion, and future-proofing initiatives for power delivery services in Norway.
Distributing power from energy producers to consumers. Image used courtesy of Siemens
LV Insights X is a Software-as-a-Service (Saas) platform that allows low-voltage (LV) grid operators and DSOs to digitally model their operations to reduce outages, improve reliability, and optimize the power delivery capacity of existing grid infrastructure.
In addition, Siemens is committing more than $150 million for a new advanced manufacturing facility in the Dallas-Fort Worth area that will produce electrical power equipment needed to support the growing number of data centers in the U.S.
The investment, combined with prior investments in North Carolina, Texas, and California, brings Siemens’ total U.S. manufacturing in 2023 to over $500 million. The expansions are projected to create more than 1,700 new jobs.
Distribution System Operators (DSO)
In a power distribution system, DSOs have the important task of distributing and managing the electricity generated from energy producers to energy consumers. Within the larger grid, LV infrastructure delivers power from the distribution transformers to end users and operates at voltages up to about 240 V.
Elvia manages the power delivery infrastructure in the Innlandet, Viken, and Oslo metropolitan regions. The company’s area of responsibility covers more than 50,000 square kilometers, roughly the size of Denmark, and is populated with customers who expect 24/7 grid reliability, 365 days a year.
About one-third of what Elvia’s customers pay for electricity goes to the highly regulated DSO to fund grid management services, including operations, emergency services, investments in expanded capacity, and modernization.
LV Insights X Software Improves Grid Visibility
Global electrification trends and the growing electricity demand have stressed grids to their limits, resulting in more frequent outages and reduced reliability. To meet growing demand, LV grid operators must expand capacity through new infrastructure investments and optimizing existing infrastructure.
The LV Insights X SaaS platform from Siemens gives DSOs visibility into grid operations to help them get the most capacity out of their existing infrastructure while improving energy quality and reliability. The software allows operators to develop digital models of their grid infrastructure that can be used to monitor status, reduce outages, and develop critical operational insights.
Software provides data-driven insights for grid operators. Image used courtesy of Siemens
According to Siemens, the LV Insights X modeling and outage detection features allow operators to reduce system outages by up to 30%. Erik Jansen, head of grid operations at Elvia, emphasized his company relies on innovations like LV Insights X to help future-proof their grid operations and expand capacity.
Along with Elvia, Siemens worked closely with several European DSOs on the testing, development, and recent deployment of LV Insights X.
US Manufacturing Investments
Siemens’ $150 million production facility in the Dallas-Fort Worth area will employ the latest manufacturing technologies to produce electrical equipment designed to power the growing number of data centers across the U.S.
The rapid growth of generative AI has led to the need for infrastructure to power the increasing number of data centers and their high-power processors. According to Siemens, the data center market is projected to grow at about 10% per year through 2030.
In addition to data centers, equipment manufactured at the facility will be targeted for critical infrastructure applications, including battery plants, semiconductor facilities, and EV charging stations.
Plant production should begin in 2024, reaching full operating capacity by 2025.
Concept of Siemens’ manufacturing plant in Dallas-Fort Worth. Image used courtesy of Siemens
The investment is part of $500 million of Siemens’ total investment in the US manufacturing sector in 2023 and the company’s larger €2 billion global investment initiative supporting digitalization, automation, electrification, and sustainability.