Digital twins can slash costs in your organization

by Asseti

The global pandemic has forced a great amount of involuntary change upon us in all aspects of our lives. Events beyond our control have forced us into a situation of 'adapt or wither'. Like most other areas of business, asset management practices have had to respond to the many unpredictable challenges and changes wrought by pandemic restrictions. The stunted economy, travel restrictions, quarantines, and lockdowns have all led to a rapid rethink of how we go about managing physical assets.

Primary among these is how to reduce costs across organizations. Not only do we need to respond and adjust to the unpredictability of constantly changing pandemic restrictions, but we also need to future-proof these adjustments to be in an advantageous position in the post-pandemic world. It's a tricky juggling act to perform, especially when dealing with a situation so unpredictable and swiftly evolving, but with so many unknowable factors attached.

Thankfully we also live in a world of swiftly developing technology, and it is here that we will find our solutions. One such technology that can be of great benefit to organisations with high asset management demands is "Digital Twins," or "Digital Reality Models". When paired with an appropriate presentation platform they can provide considerable reductions in operating expenses. Asseti is a company that specializes in this technology and can provide organizations with the service.

Digital Twins use multiple layers of information to create a digital model. This includes geospatially referenced photogrammetry, LiDAR, hyperspectral, and thermal imagery - plus other live and periodic sensor data. The various data streams are cross-referenced by time and location stamps and a representative model is created.

A key use of digital twin technology is better visualization and management of assets, so that uptime can be maximized and maintenance budgets trimmed. It is in this area that Asseti's agile digital twins are deployed, to assist asset network management at scale. For example, a national telco operator with 1,800 towers reduced its operating budget by 30% after deploying Asseti. A significant proportion of the towers are in remote, wet and heavily vegetated environments prone to cyclones and heavy weather incidents - and network failure could leave nearly a quarter of a million citizens without telephone communication capability. Asseti captured and processed the data automatically, producing 3D models of each tower as the basis of a digital twin network. The digital twin then integrated sensors monitoring operational network conditions, third-party data feeds including weather and weather incidents, as well as routine model updates. As a result, 80% of emergency repair demands have been eliminated. Now the organization is able to call up asset network status easily at any time and delivers regular reports to extra-organizational stakeholders.

As can be seen, digital twin modeling streamlines processes, increases efficiency while also reducing inspection times and occupational health and safety risks. It also reduces the cost base, while optimising data analysis efficiency.

Restructuring to take advantage of digital twins

Uncertainty is rife in the international business uncertainty in the wake of the pandemic, but those circumstances make this the ideal time to develop, or expand, your digital asset management strategy. Implementing an agile digital solution like Asseti makes organizations more robust and able to withstand and survive the current situation, and also delivers immediate cost reductions. Asseti is agile and significantly faster to deploy than other digital twins solution, and requires far fewer (if any) human resources. Moving to a digital asset management platform now will enable remote asset management and avoid negative impacts of travel limitations, and position the organization for agility once pandemic restrictions are lifted.

Reduce Operational Expenses

It's well known that manual asset inspection methods are expensive, time-consuming, and labor-intensive. In combination, these factors create operational inefficiencies. Traditional methods are also rife with occupational safety concerns. Think of an inspection team having to trek kilometers into the wilderness with expensive and sometimes bulky gear (that may not even be required) to assess a telecommunications tower. Or personnel risking the danger of hazardous climbing to check towers or wind turbines. These are the sorts of risky activities that can expose an organization to workplace injury. Despite the costs in time and resources associated with risky and time-consuming manual inspections, the resulting data is often inadequate or incomplete.

As an alternative Asseti can build an accurate and efficient 'agile digital twin' of your asset network, very economically and quickly, without adding administrative burden to your team. Asseti digital twins reveal risk and opportunity across the asset network, highlights recommended remedial actions, and enable better and faster decision making in a way that lifts asset network performance.

Immediate Benefits of adopting a Digital Twin

So what are the immediate benefits of using an Asseti digital twin?

  • In the telco example above, Asseti led to a 30% reduction in operational costs, along with an 80% reduction in inspection costs 
  • With the support of Asseti, one GHD Advisory client expedited critical issue reporting by 12 times while simultaneously reducing costs by 80%
  • Customer satisfaction and loyalty gains; "Asseti has amplified value to clients, delivering the intelligence and ability to be agile at scale – we've expanded our client services and our clients are more satisfied"
  • Inspection time can be reduced by 50% or more
  • Cost and downtime associated with travel is eliminated
  • Human error related to data collection, and on-site occupational health and safety risks, are eliminated.

Long Term Benefits

  • Because Asseti digital twins consume geospatial data for the same asset in different time periods, organizations can benefit by layering inspection models over each other, revealing trends over time
  • Degradation profile modeling; Asseti benchmarks assets and thereby builds a robust and localized degradation and life cycle model which leads to more cost savings
  • Efficient use of AI-enhanced data assists more informed decision-making throughout the asset management process

Further Benefits

What other areas of your organisation can benefit from digital twins?
  • Digital twins can be used to benchmark and assess asset valuations; having a comprehensive record of each asset's condition and associated life cycle modeling simplifies asset valuation and benchmarking and it also helps with determining capital expenditure requirements
  • The virtual twin can be used as a reporting tool to provide insight to negotiate additional investment or more favourable terms from financiers or keep government records
  • They allow inspection obligations to be met without causing the disruptions and shutdowns often associated with traditional, manual, inspection methods - particularly in non-property asset networks

Restructuring to Take Advantage Of Digital Twins

The benefits of adopting digital twins are many and varied. To come out of the other side of the global pandemic as a leaner and more streamlined organization best able to take advantage of new opportunities.

Arrange an Asseti demonstration to see what your agile digital twin could look like, and how Asseti is able to deliver the central digital twin benefits at a fraction of the cost of alternative digital twin technologies. 

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