from Strategy+Business interview with Bill Ruh, GE’s Chief Digital Officer
In 2013, we launched a digital analytics capability called PowerUp (see vid below) for wind energy. By optimizing each blade for the wind it was receiving, the software could get 5 percent more electricity out of a wind turbine. That’s profound, because 5 percent more electricity generated equals 20 percent more profit for the wind farm owner. And it’s been improved further — to 20 percent more electricity, with the same hardware.
Similarly, for a North American railroad, we enabled a one mile per hour average increase in locomotive performance. For the railroad, that was equal to US$200 million in added profit each year. You can use similar analytics to boost fuel productivity for an airline or a power utility; this is game-changing for them.
In general, if we can obtain operating information from industrial assets, develop analytics based on our knowledge of how these assets perform, and provide insight on the fly, we think we can get productivity growth in the industrial world back to 4 percent. Maybe higher, because technology like this can get more out of the industrial asset base than anybody ever has.