GE Vernova has launched Fleet Orchestration, a new software that leverages AI and machine learning to help power utilities maximize the use of renewable energy.
The software works with existing assets with the aim of accelerating carbon reduction targets and meeting demand.
The tool is designed for vertically integrated utilities (those that generate, transmit, and distribute power) and incorporates renewables into existing assets. The main function of the software is to optimize the ability to reduce a utility’s need for excess fossil fuel reserves and increase confidence in its renewable energy strategy.
The software features a Performance Predictions module that provides renewable energy predictions automated for various time intervals ranging from 15 minutes to weekly for each unit, block, and plant. The tool also offers a unit commitment optimizer module that uses a stochastic model to provide planning insights and real-time recommendations based on conditions and how to navigate matching generation and demand. According to GE Vernova, the recommendations can set appropriate reserve margins and maximize the use of renewables.
“Renewables like wind and solar play an important role in the energy transition. They’re key to reducing the world’s (dependency) on fossil fuels. The challenge is that these energy sources are inherently variable — the wind doesn’t always blow, and the sun doesn’t always shine. But people always expect their lights to turn on when they flip the switch,” Linda Rae, general manager, of power generation and oil and gas for GE Vernova’s digital business, said in a statement. “This is where software solutions, such as Fleet Orchestration, can help reduce this uncertainty for power companies, giving them the confidence needed to ensure grid stability while simultaneously reducing emissions.”
The software’s debut comes as the United States is seeing numerous upgrades to its electric grid. Extreme weather events exacerbated by climate change are having a negative impact on the power grid, and as demand for power continues to rise during these events — such as deep freezes or heat waves — energy security and reliability are increasingly critical.
The GE software’s ability to aid in setting appropriate margins — the amount of extra resources to keep power systems reliable in times of stress — also comes at the right time, as reserve margins may need to increase from 15% to 300% by 2040 to reach 56% renewables use, according to a study released by ISO New England last year.