The electrical industry has been booming in the last couple of years, shifting to digital technologies and integration. As a result, the industry has seen record-breaking numbers in innovation and growth. Although the demand for electrical work will shrink, there are still significant trends to watch for in the coming year.
Increase in Demand for Smart Buildings
5G is bringing another layer of integration into our homes and businesses. It’s not just about smart technology. Smart cities, schools, transportation, hospitals, etc., will be powered by wireless tech and increased connectivity. Contractors and technicians with experience in smart technology and systems will succeed as we navigate into this new future.
High Tech PPE
High tech wearables and personal protective equipment is finding its way into the electrical industry. This takes equipment to a new level, providing smart protection and organization with important information.
For example, one of these smart devices is Proxxi. This armband is a wearable voltage sensor that radically reduces the risk of electrical contact injuries and electrocution. It provides real-time insights into workers’ behavior and warns the wearer when they are too close to a dangerous electrical field. The device can connect to a phone, alerting other contractors when there is a warning. The data then moves to the broader organization, assisting in decision making, and ensuring that everyone is aware.
Microgrids are localized grids that operate on their own. Since they can run alone, they can strengthen grid resilience and help lower the risks of grid disturbances when the main grid is down.
Microgrids support an overall efficient grid by using renewable energy sources, like solar, wind, and hydropower. The use of local energy sources helps reduce energy loss, resulting in increased efficiency of the electric system.
The electrical industry is driven by the need for security, resiliency, and remote areas’ electrification — all of which can be solved by implementing microgrids.
Electrical engineers can use drones to monitor and examine hazardous electrical zones without harming themselves or others. This provides a higher level of safety in the electrical industry. Also, drones can collect and record data on the site, which others in the organization can use. As a result, drones help increase productivity, safety, and efficiency.
Renewable energy sources are great for sustainable energy; however, they’re not always available for use. Energy must be saved from whichever energy source — solar, wind, or biomass. To solve this, the electricity industry is working towards better battery and energy storage. The demand for a cleaner and more dynamic grid has led to energy storage initiatives and more efficient energy storage solutions.
Electrical engineers and contractors should be equipped with the necessary knowledge to succeed in the digital shift in the electrical industry. Digital integration offers increased productivity, efficiency, and safety, all of which impact the individual electrician and the entire organization.