The last week of this past March was quite busy for the PSM Studio and Product Management Team as participation in three virtual events in the Middle East and South East Asia were either hosted or produced. PSM was invited to moderate a panel session of experts on Digital Solutions for Optimal Asset Performance during Clarion Event’s ENLIT Asia+ Series. Additionally, we presented in another ENLIT Asia+ session on our Flexibility Retrofit Solutions that focused on big data M&D with predictive analytics and our FlexSuite digital solutions, including AutoTune. There were several hundred people who watched each event, and while they were pre-recorded, PSM was available during the actual production to answer questions or moderate the Q&A. The South East Asia region is going through a radical energy mix transformation, and while adopting leading edge technologies for power gen asset optimization are a qualified norm in European and North American markets, their acceptance is beginning to gather solid momentum in certain regional countries like Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.
In the Middle East, at the ME Utility’s Power Week 2021, the thesis posed to PSM/Thomassen and other panelists was “The future of gas in the region’s energy transition.” The session was pre-recorded live at 4:30am “PSM-Jupiter” time was fun (!!), with the questions and conversations focused and provocative. The Middle East region generates most of their power from natural gas, some nuclear and oil, but with a growing realization of the cost effectiveness of solar power. Gas turbines offer base load power in the region, but equally can respond quickly and reliably to renewable volatility. It was clear that over the near term, gas will remain the dominant form of power generation simply because of the local, low cost supply, but with a more urgent look in the rearview mirror at how the continued introduction of vast volumes of renewables will be added and their variable production cycle managed. Power plant carbon dioxide emission reductions mandated by government, while managing grid reliability, are both paramount concerns, and PSM and Thomassen are positioning well to offer our service solutions that address these requirements. Energy storage, using an over-abundance of renewables to generate green hydrogen via electrolysis, while a nascent idea in the region, is gathering momentum, both for powering gas turbines and creating green ammonia (NH3) for export. While the veracity of panelist opinions were aligned on the dominance of gas for power today, PSM believes that the transition to renewables in the region was accelerating quickly and the fuel flexibility of gas turbines would allow them to become ‘green’ with hydrogen fuel, supported by emerging carbon pricing mechanisms to improve the business rationale. Here’s hoping we are prescient!