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Energy Monitoring in a Remote Off-Grid Location with Manual Data Entry+

Energy Monitoring in a Remote Off-Grid Location with Manual Data Entry+

In today's digital landscape, automation and seamless data integrations have transformed how companies handle vast volumes of data. Yet, there are instances where manual data entry becomes essential. This is where tools like the "Manual Data Entry+" extension for the PI System via PI Vision become indispensable. Let’s dive into a specific use-case to understand its potential.

Use-Case: Energy Monitoring in a Remote Off-Grid Location

In this Use-Case, we are taking a closer look at EnergyCorp (name has been changed), with a significant renewable energy installation in a remote, off-grid location. The installation comprises wind turbines, solar panels, and a small backup generator.

Most of the data from these energy sources is automated — sensors capture and transmit data to the PI System, offering real-time insights. This data includes the energy output, wind speed, solar radiation levels, and more.

However, there's a caveat: the backup generator, being an older model, lacks the sophisticated sensors of the modern equipment. Yet, it's crucial to monitor its fuel levels and operational hours, as it ensures energy supply continuity during periods when renewable sources can't meet the demand.

Where Manual Data Entry+ Comes In

Every week, a technician visits this remote location for maintenance and inspection. During these visits, they manually check the generator's fuel levels, operational hours, and other pertinent metrics.

With the Manual Data Entry+ extension:

  1. Simplified Entry Process: The technician can easily open PI Vision on a mobile device and quickly input the required data for the generator. The interface is intuitive, reducing entry errors.

  2. Immediate Integration: Once entered, this data immediately becomes part of the PI System. It's integrated with automated data from other sources, offering a holistic view of the installation's energy status.

  3. Data Validation: The extension offers validation features. If the technician enters a value that seems unusual (like a sudden drop in fuel levels), the system can prompt a reconfirmation, ensuring accuracy.

  4. Historical Data Comparison: The system also allows the technician to view historical data on-the-go. If they notice discrepancies or anomalies in the generator's performance, they can easily cross-reference past data entries.

Benefits for EnergyCorp

  1. Enhanced Decision Making: With a more comprehensive dataset, analysts at EnergyCorp can make better-informed decisions about energy distribution and generator maintenance.

  2. Cost-Efficiency: With accurate manual data seamlessly integrated, there's less risk of unexpected generator downtimes, which could be expensive in terms of both repairs and energy disruption.

  3. Streamlined Operations: By offering technicians an easy-to-use interface, the manual data entry process is faster, freeing them to focus on other critical maintenance tasks.


While we inch closer to a fully automated world, there will always be scenarios where manual data entry is unavoidable. Extensions like Manual Data Entry+ for the PI System provide companies with the flexibility to bridge the gap between automated systems and essential manual processes, ensuring data integrity, accuracy, and seamless operational efficiency.

PI Vision and Manual Data Entry+ on an IPhone.


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