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Artificial intelligence, Energy Sector, Facilities management, Machine Learning
Digitalization and artificial intelligence (AI) have infiltrated most sectors of the economy, including the energy sector, where they have been extensively investigated. The aim of the study is primarily to assess the awareness of AI in facility management, and to identify the prospects and challenges of the adoption of AI in the energy sector. The study adopted the quantitative methodology approach, using a structured questionnaire to a sample size of 384 respondents. The questionnaire was administered to professionals such as mechanical, civil, electrical, computer, and mechatronics engineers, and project managers within the North-central geopolitical zone of Nigeria. Data gathered was analysed using descriptive analysis (mean value, weighted total, and relative importance index). The study based on findings concludes that there exists high awareness level about the concept of AI in the energy sector. However, regarding the awareness about some selected AI technologies, machine & deep learning, robotics, and speech recognition had high awareness level. The study also concludes that improved energy management, efficiency and transparency, remote reading of energy meters, and improved planning, operation & control of power systems were prevalent prospects of AI adoption. The major challenging factors to the adoption of AI in the Nigerian energy sector are outdated power system infrastructure, cellular technologies, lack of qualified experts and data science skills, and growing threat from cyber-attacks. The study recommends improved awareness and technical know-how of energy sector personnel, and provision of adequate power system infrastructure to provide stable power supply.