CleanTech Innovation Challenge 2022

About Us

Our Vision

CleanTech Innovation Challenge (CIC) is expected to tackle the escalating energy problems of the country. This will bring together students, researchers, faculty and experts in the field of Energy generation, energy management to reduce cost and emission, energy consumption, usage patterns, load forecasting/backcasting, renewable source of energy to solve the problems facing the country through cutting edge technology. Of particular interest would be solutions built around CleanTech such as wind, solar, biomass and hydro. Data sets will be acquired from open databases such as Knoema, Harvard, World Bank etc. and state of the art algorithms from the fields of AI/ML and Big Data would be applied to solve real world problems.

our mission

To enable young minds to present solutions on the national canvas
To create awareness in energy usage efficiency
To tackle the escalating energy problems of the country and bringing together students, researchers, faculty and experts in the field of energy generation, transmission and distribution to solve the problems through AI/ML and Big Data.

The demand for energy in Pakistan has increased due to the high population growth rate, which is estimated at about 3% per year.

Pakistan Energy Outlook: Pakistan has been facing an energy crisis for last several years due to the continuous increase in energy consumption and delay in construction of new large-scale hydel projects. The difference in consumption and generation reached peak levels of 6000MW during 2020. This resulted in long black outs in the urban centres as well as in the far-flung villages causing great inconvenience to the general public and crippling the industry. Part of the problem was the large circular debt that accumulated over the years. The government resolved the issue temporarily by making a payment of Rs.480 billion to IPPs and state-owned entities which resulted in increase in energy generation. But this only provided temporary relief as high electricity losses still haunt the power companies and circular debt has now crossed Rs.1900 billion [The News, Feb 12 2020]. With new thermal power stations commissioned in the past five years the power sector now faces a new, and no-less serious challenge, a period of expensive capacity surplus [Energy Institute, LUMS].

Clean Energy solutions helps in achieving:

  • Energy Independence
  • Improvements in Public Health
  • Economic Benefits
  • Job Creation
  • Abundant Supply
  • Reliability. Renewable energy sources like wind and solar can actually help to build a more reliable and resilient power mix
The energy mix of the future would include fossil fuel-based generation as well as hydro and nuclear. In addition to these the government has also shown interest in alternative energy sources such as solar and wind. According to some studies Pakistan is capable of producing 200,000MW from wind energy corridors located in various parts of the country. Similarly, Pakistan is blessed with abundant solar energy and has the potential of producing 1,000,000MW. If 0.25 percent of Baluchistan is covered with solar cells enough energy can be produced to supply to the whole country.

AI/Big Data in Energy: Pakistan currently has an installed capacity of 1200MW of wind and 1550MW of solar energy [Alternate Energy Development Board]. It means that the combined capacity of these alternate energies is less than 10% of total installed capacity. The target for 25% share by 2025 seems far off at the moment but it must be noted that the above numbers do not include off-grid solar which has gained much penetration in rural Pakistan. One negative aspect of alternate energies such as wind and solar is that there generation is quite unpredictable. Solar energy production can vary widely in rainy season and can drop to as low as 10%-25% under cloud cover. Similarly, wind energy production depends upon wind speed and 7-8 m/sec wind speed is required for a wind turbine to generate near rated capacity.

Even though the successes are just starting to emerge AI has proven that it can revolutionize energy especially alternate energy. A great example of early traction is Google’s DeepMind technology, that using machine learning algorithms, has cut electricity usage at Google’s data centres by 40%. Another tech giant IBM has over 200 partners that use their solar and wind forecasting technology. A paper by Gul M Khan from UET Peshawar describes neural network approaches in creating power generation predictions of wind-based power plants. The results show the predictions from a single hour up to a year with mean absolute percentage error as low as 1.049% for a single day hourly prediction. Internationally, there has been a significant push by utility providers to install smart meters. The meters are able to send the information to the utility providers on hourly basis or even lower. It not only helps to predict the network load, but also predicts consumption habits.

Benefits of Challenge

  • Cutting edge technology solutions build around CleanTech such as wind, solar, biomass and hydro.
  • To track the cleantech workforce to understand strengths and weaknesses in knowledge, skills and abilities.
  • It will give participants a chance to meet up in real life to network, share knowledge, and bond over common goals, experiences and interests.
  • It will provide recognition and opportunity at the national level.
  • It will provide better practical knowledge and increases confidence in clean technology skills.

THE BEST TIME TO INNOVATE IS NOW

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