Energy usage in any sector, particularly in the restaurant business is inevitable and requires judicious management for energy saving and improved investment profitability. Though there are a variety of energy management and measurement metrics, it does not sufficiently equip the restaurant operations management team to set up and revise the system of procedures from time to time. What is a workable alternative? Well, IoT based energy management can definitely suffice for organized management operations through smart data reading, filtering/processing, parallel data analysis, and interpretation. Let us further explore IoT based energy monitoring system for restaurant businesses.
What are the extensively used energy resources in a restaurant business?
The extensively used energy resources in a restaurant business are electricity, water and gas. All of these resources are classified as non-renewable and therefore requires to be utilized with utmost prudence. Prudence is mandatory in the utility of such resources not only due to its non-renewable nature but the very purpose of sustaining business profitability and optimizing work efficiency.
In addition to increasing business profits and optimizing work efficiency, certifications/labeling of energy-saving are required to stay connected and ensure holistic growth in the restaurant business. Example: Energy star, a voluntary labeling program managed by the US Environment Protection Agency (EPA) rates energy savings and reassures an optimized utility of energy resources that strengthens business. With an alternative to modulate and control energy usage, you can be best rated and certificated by different agencies that guarantee your conscious attempts to save the environment and its resources. Let’s hop in and explore!
What is an alternative to modulate and control the usage of such resources?
Ideally, operations executives and managers are expected to look into the judicious utilization of water, gas and electricity within a restaurant business atmosphere. Though they have setup tools of water, gas and electricity reading and unit measurements, it does not suffice to solve the problem of wastage and over usage as these tools do not offer smart technology. As a result of a failure in smart technological updates of real-time the restaurant businesses often encounter reducing ROI in the process of heavy bill payments alongside maintenance of existing tools and systems to keep a check on resource usage.
If that be the issue with tools of measuring real-time and failure of updating concerned persons in time for framing and execution of an adequate system of procedures and policies of energy resource management, there has to be an alternative. To our fortune, yes there is. The IoT technology of the present epoch is a feasible alternative that comes with advanced features that turn energy management into a Smart energy management process. It directly impacts in altering and re-framing policies and system of procedures to optimize energy usage and efficiency by drastically reducing energy wastage.
What is the issue with Energy management in restaurant businesses?
Restaurants usually adopt the general electricity unit reading meters that simply provide the units of power consumption over a given period. The restaurant manager remains unaware of consumption graphs/data in real-time and therefore has to stick to manual dependency upon usage reduction.
On the other hand, with gas usage often the gas supply level monitoring instruments are not efficient enough to alert when consumption is reaching to maximum limits during a given time period. Let alone sending alerts, options to set threshold limits are not available too. These meters are not equipped with smart features that assure automation.
Another issue is with the water supply monitoring system within restaurants. The water reading meters are not smart meters and as a result, are not equipped enough to turn off motors when the water containers are filling up to the brim and prevent water wastage and save electricity. Automation is simply not an option without smart meters and efficient sensors.
IoT based energy sensor kit solves the trouble of extensive manual dependency. Automation in energy monitoring is made a reality with IoT technology. IoT based energy monitoring solution keeps track with real-time data and provides timely updates to operations managers who can further assess and structure policies for saving energy, optimizing energy with limited consumption and upscaling profit margins.
The following components of IoT Solution play a major role in measuring the energy usage within the restaurant environment are:
a) Smart sensors – Water meters, Gas supply monitoring instruments and power reading meters are turned smart with the help of advanced sensors. Some of the notable sensors that can offer automation and provide real-time data are: Flame detection sensors, Gas analyzer sensors, Gas flow/supply analyzer sensors and so on can be used to keep check of Gas consumption in restaurants. Optical liquid level sensors, Ultrasonic water level sensors, Float water supply sensors and such sensors can be used to monitor at real-time the supply levels of water. Water supply smart meters can even be used to detect analytics of meter reading. Switchboard regulators, power supply/electricity sensors can be used to assess and monitor electricity consumption at real-time in the restaurant. These sensors empower your instruments and tools of monitoring energy consumption in restaurants businesses.
b) Cloud storage – IoT Solution is offered to restaurant businesses with Cloud computing principles and cloud storage facilities through IIoT Platform providers. Cloud storage capabilities enable real-time data to be transferred and analyzed using data computing analytics and predictive maintenance principles for the generation of graphs, metrics and qualitative data reports for comparisons and study of energy consumption patterns in a restaurant business. Cloud storage provides a safe space for data housing without leaving it unattended.
c) Data security – As soon as you learn of cloud storage, it is natural to worry of data security. IoT solves data security issues with the provision of IIoT platforms for industrial usage that are designed with end-to-end encryptions which ensure data security. New innovations in the field of IIoT data security have been focusing on data security measures and it is now at a safe juncture to propose that IoT data security is offered effectively without permitting violation and misuse.
d) Alert mechanisms – IoT platform provides the user to set data rule and alerts mechanisms for continuous updates. These are provided to industrial use through IIoT platforms that are engineered to bring to maximize efficiency in energy monitoring. The IIoT platforms are crafted with data rule options, upon its activation along with the setting of thresholds, customers are alerted in times of immediate need.
e) Command executions – To our fortunate aid, there are IIoT platforms that come with inbuilt command execution features. This primarily refers to the capability of an IIoT platform to trigger an action in case of an emergency, when the command feature is turned on / activated. An example could be that the water tank has been filled and is at the verge of overflowing, but the manual motor switch operator has forgotten. With IoT, you do not have to stress. Simply activate the command feature and watch your IoT smart connection turn it off and avoid overhead tank overflows.
How can Fogwing IIoT Platform be of use to restaurant businesses?
Fogwing Industrial IoT Platform is engineered to encompass all of the above-mentioned features and many more functions. Fogwing Industrial IoT Platform can help users to identify and access valuable data through its data query functions. Retrofit energy sensors are to be deployed on existing instruments/tools/meters or must be replaced with smart meters. These sensors or smart meters/instruments capture data in real-time and transfer it to the Fogwing cloud. In the Fogwing cloud, data is refined, sorted and analyzed using various data engineering principles and are sent to the storage repository. The stored data is made accessible as valuable insights relating to water consumption levels, electricity units used, and gas utility levels.
In addition, the data rule option within Fogwing helps to set thresholds that enable customers to receive timely updates, warnings, and critical alerts pertaining to units of electricity usage, water level consumption, and gas utility from time to time. This feature empowers customers to keep track of utility patterns of energy consumption in their restaurants. The commanding feature of Fogwing Industrial IoT is a premier capability that allows the Platform to trigger action in times of emergency. (Example: when this feature is enabled, even if the manager of the energy operation of a restaurant is unavailable, an action is automated and performed. In case, electricity/power is being overused for heating water, the action of automated turn off is performed and the alternative heating facility (solar) can be used). Along with these and many more intricate features, the Fogwing Industrial IoT Platform ensures data security with end-to-end encryption.
This real-time data reporting that gets generated directly helps customers’ assess the energy consumption patterns of their restaurants. This assessment can further initiate change in procedural management of energy consumption management and lay policies to cut heavy utilization, save energy and increase profit margins.
Restaurant businesses can get the best of it by implementing it in their energy consumption monitoring systems.
IoT based energy consumption provides solutions to the ongoing crisis in energy management within the restaurant sector. IoT is the next-generation technology that digitizes business and improves transparency within the restaurant business domain along with the benefits of automation.