Exclusive interview with Ling Hui, founder of Yuaneng Xingtai: Explore digital twin technology and build energy industry meta-universe
In 2002, Professor Michael Grieves, who is engaged in PLM of product life cycle management, proposed mirror space model in a product life cycle management course of University of Michigan. Real space and virtual space (VR) appeared in the model, which is considered as the embryonic form of digital twin concept.In 2010, NASA officially put forward the concept of “digital twin”, which uses digital technology to replace various physical twin objects through virtualization, simulation and real-time status, history maintenance, health management and other data of aircraft, so as to meet the needs of the current stage of deep space exploration.With the development of technology and the human imagination of the unknown space, the concept of “digital twin” is becoming more and more popular.Gartner, an influential it research and analysis company, has listed digital twinning as one of the top 10 strategic technology trends for three consecutive years since 2016.A recent accenture survey of more than 6,200 business and information technology executives worldwide, including 250 Chinese executives, found that 88 percent of Chinese executives expect their companies to increase investment in digital twinning over the next three years.What is certain is that digital twinning has become an inevitable result and inevitable way of digitization.In this development trend, digital twin – based concept of enterprises mushrooming.According to the enterprise search, there are more than 600 enterprises related to digital twin, and Yuaneng Xingtai (Tianjin) Digital Technology Co., Ltd. is one of them.MetaStar is a cutting-edge technology startup company focusing on the metasurtical track of the energy industry.It relies on the background research and development team of tsinghua university, South China University of Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and other top universities to create a powerful independent controllable energy industry meta-universe digital twin PAAS tool chain.At present, under the leadership of its founder Ling Hui, MetaStar has created a number of industry benchmarking cases.It has made achievements in the energy industry such as electricity, petroleum and petrochemical, water conservancy and so on, and has obtained the first round of investment from taiyou and Shuimu Tsinghua Alumni funds, as well as strategic investment from Qingda Innovation (Xiamen), a subsidiary of Tsinghua Strait Institute.Today, Our reporter interviewed Ling Hui and talked with her about the story between digital twin technology and the energy industry metauniverse.Hello, Mr. Ling, please introduce yourself first, including how you came up with the idea of establishing Yuaneng Xingtai.Ling Hui: To answer this question, I have to start with my own experience: AFTER graduating from university in 2011, I joined China Southern Power Grid.As I majored in civil engineering in Tsinghua University, after three months ‘induction training and three months’ rotation internship, my understanding of power system is still very superficial and theoretical although I have experienced various types of field work for a period of time.A few years later, I resigned from China Southern Power Grid And engaged in BIM related product research and development. Fortunately, I was deeply involved in the research work related to THREE-DIMENSIONAL digitalization of China Southern Power Grid and undertook the first 500kV THREE-DIMENSIONAL substation and several lines and pipe corridor projects.In this process, I found that not only my cognition of power grid was improved rapidly, but also I became a technical expert from an industry outsider, and non-professional product managers and development engineers in my team could quickly complete business understanding.Twin in this moment I realized that digital rapid promotion specialized understanding, reduce barriers to industry cognitive level landmark: when digital twin body, external and internal staff, management, policy makers and the professional or business actors, the running status of the entire project, business logic and operation principle of cognitive efficiency is greatly increased.That’s why I’m determined to focus on the industrial metasomes (digital twins) of the energy industry, mostly because I’ve experienced its true value firsthand.Seagulls: What were your considerations in choosing the eIC metasomes track?Ling Hui: First, as the core members of my team and I are mainly from the energy industry, the first batch of digital twin benchmark project cases also belong to the energy industry, so it is natural to focus on this segment of the track.Second, the energy industry has always been a pillar industry of China’s development. At the same time, under the background of the “dual carbon” strategy, the energy industry is facing structural transformation, and its digital transformation needs are the most urgent among all industries. We are eager to seize this historical opportunity.Third, the scene where digital twin can give full play to its value is the asset-intensive and knowledge-intensive industry. I believe that compared with the general livelihood service industry and discrete manufacturing industry, the energy industry has the most vigorous real demand for digital twin.Seagull: what are the advantages of the digital twin products compared with similar products?Ling Hui: In the digital twin industry, we have many friends, and we work together to make the industry as thriving as it is now.Compared with counterparts, our difference is that our products are more focused on service field production operation management, our platform products at the scene of the actual service application of interaction design, will provide customers with the efficiency of simulation development interface, can ensure the security of data exchange and so on r&d investment in the direction to do very much, so compared to pay more attention to display and visualization of bad,We are much more grounded and focused on long-term value investments.Twin gas station in digital solution as an example, the scheme combines gas flow hydraulic calculation model of real time, and the mechanism of equipment simulation modeling, the scene of the machinery, electricity, gas, energy, and other dimensions of twin, real-time and twin all kinds of business and production operation management depth fusion, create the real operation monitoring platform based on digital twin.Seagull: What are the real-life applications of digital twinning?How should technology landing be accomplished?Ling Hui: The main application scenarios of our products are divided into three categories: the first is class ELECTRIC power industry: including all kinds of power plants, such as coal-fired power plants, gas power plants, hydropower stations, garbage power plants, etc.;It also includes various scenes of power grid, such as converter station, substation, transmission line, cable tunnel, distribution platform area, etc.There are many low-carbon and zero-carbon parks and communities, which are also derivative scenes of digital twins.The second category is petroleum and petrochemical industry: including oil recovery, storage and transportation, refining;Also includes natural gas LNG receiving station, gas storage station, transmission network, urban network;Also includes some chemical plants, steel works and so on.The third category is water conservancy industry: including river basins, urban pipe networks, water diversion projects, hydropower stations, pumped storage power stations, etc.At present, our project is mainly to build a model of benchmarking solutions for relevant scenarios, and build relevant pilot cases of digital twins together with the owners.Digital twin applications are still in the exploratory stage of the industry, and there is currently a strong interest from a number of owners in this direction.Our aim is to create a real digital twin application for the owners, to achieve daily operation and management based on digital twin, to achieve the routine implementation of simulation, artificial intelligence and other sophisticated applications, and to truly achieve value transfer.Seagull: The “smart City Gas Digital Twin System solution” of Yuanneng Xingtai became the only winning project of the energy Digital Twin track. Can you introduce this project to us?Mamax: and before each big business enterprise of gas in the process of communication, we can clearly feel although invested a lot of cost, but the overall level of intelligent is not particularly high, the main reason is that the construction of different systems are aimed at different problems, data can not connectivity, can’t realize the intelligent control, provide data support for decision makers.So when we design solutions, we think about whether we can deepen the sense of “one platform.”Our solutions cover the vast majority of gas scenes, from the intelligent scheduling of the entire regional pipe network to the daily business scenes of a station.Through BIM component-level modeling information, combined with self-research platforms such as big data, Internet of things and algorithms, digital twin bases that can bear data and algorithms of different system applications are created to ensure that all kinds of applications can be carried out on “one platform”.At the same time, with the accumulation of actual operation data, the digital twin model is constantly fed back for simulation iteration, so that it has the ability of self-evolution initially.This solution has now been implemented with nearly ten benchmark cases.We would also like to thank the gas owners and the competition committee for their recognition.Seagull network: does Yuan Neng Xingtai have financing plans recently?What, if any, would you like to do after raising money?Ling Hui: Yes, the team was in awe of capital before, so it did not follow the market-oriented independent development model.At the end of last year (2021), with the encouragement of industry seniors in Tsinghua university, the team finally decided to transform into a standardized frontier technology start-up company.The headquarters of our company was established in December 2021, and we immediately obtained the seed round investment from Taiyou Fund and Shuimu Tsinghua Fund, two Institutions affiliated with Tsinghua University. Meanwhile, Tsinghua Straits Institute has also become our shareholder.We plan to complete angel round financing in the first half of 2022. At present, a number of leading domestic institutions have expressed clear investment intentions.After the completion of the financing, we will increase investment in product research and development, on the one hand, to further consolidate our current product leading edge, on the other hand, expand our marketing and delivery team, to provide quality service for more customers in the energy industry.Seagull network: what are your expectations for Yuaneng Xingtai?What is your vision for the energy industry metaverse?Ling Hui: Ok, let me first answer our vision for the industry.We think that the setting of Skynet in Schwarzink’s film is the general direction of the future of human technology, namely the meta-universe.Digital twinnings are the infrastructure of the metasomes, where AI algorithms and pan-XR devices (including brain-machine interfaces) need access to a 1:1, real-time simulation digital PAAS platform, or digital twinnings network.In short, when we have countless digital twins connected together, the metasomes have a real carrier.As for the energy industry circuit, we believe that it will be a trillion market segment with a relatively early explosion and large volume due to the characteristics of the industry.So, we and our investors are highly optimistic.As for our company, Yuaneng Xingtai entered the company earlier, integrated the leading technology of Tsinghua university, accumulated certain products, and in particular, had a number of high-quality cases.For example, one of our digital twin large flow intelligent verification projects has become the no.1 smart model project in 2021 in the wechat public account of the national pipe network, the first ultra-high voltage converter station project of China Southern Power Grid that we undertake, and the digital twin pump station project of a national key water conservancy project highly recognized by the owner.Therefore, I am very confident to become the leading brand of the track in the future, and also make a certain contribution to the digital transformation of our country’s energy industry.