These AR Goggles Are Making Faster Fixes in Oil Fields

By Milana Vinn

  •  Managing complicated repairs remotely saves oil companies time and money

Replacing parts of an outdated Baker Hughes turbine at a petrochemical plant in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, is about as fun as it sounds. The chore was supposed to halt operations at the facility for at least 10 days and cost $50,000 to fly a specialized U.S. work crew about 9,000 miles. Instead, once the equipment upgrade began last year, it took only five days and zero air travel—just an on-site technician wearing a dorky helmet camera and a few American engineers supervising remotely. They watched and coached the local crew through the helmet from a Baker Hughes site in Pomona, Calif.

Augmented-reality headsets, which overlay digital images on a real-world field of vision, are driving advances in industrial technology a few steps beyond FaceTime. While the likes of Apple, Amazon.com, Google, and Microsoft race to develop mainstream AR consumer gadgets in the next couple of years, they’ve been outpaced by oil companies looking for ways to cut costs. Some are simply buying the goggles and building custom software; others are investing directly in AR startups; still others are making the hardware as well. Baker Hughes, a General Electric Co. subsidiary, calls its rig a Smart Helmet. “Traditionally I would have to pay for two people’s travel, two people’s accommodations, and so forth to visit the customer’s site to do the mentoring,” says John McMillan, a regional repairs chief at the company whose team uses the helmet regularly. “It’s saved me a lot.”

Baker Hughes co-created its AR headset with Italian developer VRMedia S.r.l. and wrote its own software. BP Plc says it’s using AR glasses to bring remote expertise to sites across the U.S. Startup RealWear Inc.says it’s signed two dozen other energy companies, including Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Exxon Mobil Corp., to test its $2,000 headset. On March 6, AR software maker Upskill announced a fresh $17 million in venture funding from Boeing Co.Cisco Systems Inc., and other investors.

Remote gear can help experienced workers stay on the job even if they can no longer handle the travel or other physical demands of rig maintenance. “With these technologies, it’s more about the people than the hardware,” says Shell Executive Vice President Alisa Choong. Janette Marx, chief operating officer for industry recruiter Airswift, says remote work is also a good sales pitch to skilled technicians who might be lured by cushier gigs in Silicon Valley.

The bigger prize for oil companies is reduced downtime for equipment. Each day offline for a typical 200,000-barrel-a-day refinery can mean almost $12 million in lost revenue. Offshore oil and gas facilities often halt operations while waiting to fly specialists in by helicopter and, according to industry analyst Kimberlite International Oilfield Research, shut down 27 days a year on average. Little wonder, then, that analyst ABI Research estimates energy and utility companies’ annual spending on AR glasses and related technology will reach $18 billion in 2022, among the most of any industry.

Remote AR work doesn’t always go smoothly. Oil rigs often lack reliable wireless networks, and many headsets don’t yet meet the strict standards for areas near hazardous materials or high-risk jobs. Under certain conditions, for example, the headsets might emit dangerous sparks. That’s one reason many of the oil companies’ pilot programs remain just that for now.

Baker Hughes hasn’t had to worry about those issues yet, says John Westerheide, director of emerging technologies. In Malaysia, engineers were able to view equipment, send images to the headset screen, and talk directly to the on-site workers with few hiccups. “The way that we currently go to work,” Westerheide says, “that’s going to become much more virtual, interactive, and collaborative.” —With David Wethe

BOTTOM LINE – Energy and utility companies’ annual spending on AR and related technologies, which reduce travel and equipment downtime, is expected to hit $18 billion within five years.

Source Bloomberg

BP deploys Plant Operations Advisor on Gulf of Mexico platforms

Advanced analytics solution, developed with BHGE, will be installed on BP’s upstream assets around the world

HOUSTON – BP announced today that it has successfully deployed Plant Operations Advisor (POA), a cloud-based advanced analytics solution developed with Baker Hughes, a GE company, across all four of its operated production platforms in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico.

The announcement comes after an initial deployment of POA proved the technology could help prevent unplanned downtime at BP’s Atlantis platform in the Gulf.

The technology has now been successfully installed and tested at BP’s Thunder Horse, Na Kika, and Mad Dog platforms – and it will continue to be deployed to more than 30 of BP’s upstream assets across the globe.

Diana and Barth keep a close eye on the plant

“BP has been one of the pioneers in digital technology in our industry, and co-development of Plant Operations Advisor with BHGE is a key plank of modernizing and transforming our upstream operations,” said Ahmed Hashmi, BP’s global head of upstream technology. “We expect the deployment of this technology not only to deliver improvements in safety, reliability, and performance of our assets but also to help raise the bar for the entire oil and gas industry.”

Built on GE’s Predix platform, POA applies analytics to real-time data from the production system and provides system-level insights to engineers so operational issues on processes and equipment can be addressed before they become significant. POA helps engineers manage the performance of BP’s offshore assets by further ensuring that assets operate within safe operating limits to reduce unplanned downtime.

hr.jpg

“BP has been one of the pioneers in digital technology in our industry, and co-development of Plant Operations Advisor with BHGE is a key plank of modernizing and transforming our upstream operations.”

Ahmed Hashmi, BP’s global head of upstream technology

hr.jpg

Now live across the Gulf of Mexico, POA works across more than 1,200 mission-critical pieces of equipment, analyzing more than 155 million data points per day and delivering insights on performance and maintenance. There are plans to continue augmenting the analytical capabilities in the system as POA is expanded to BP’s upstream assets around the globe.

BP and BHGE announced a partnership in 2016 to develop POA, an industry-wide solution for improved plant reliability. The teams have built a suite of cloud-based Industrial ‘internet of things’ (IoT) solutions that have been tailor-fit for BP’s oil and gas operations.

“The partnership between BP and BHGE has resulted in a unique set of capabilities that quickly find valuable insights in streams of operational data,” said Matthias Heilmann, president, and CEO of Digital Solutions and chief digital officer for Baker Hughes, a GE company. “Together, we are creating leading-edge technologies to automate processes and increase the safety and reliability of BP’s upstream assets. As we extend the solution globally, this will become the largest upstream Industrial IoT deployment in the world when complete.”

BP is currently in the process of deploying POA to its operations in Angola with additional deployments in Oman and the North Sea scheduled for 2019.

hr.jpg

Downloads

hr.jpg

About BP

BP is a global producer of oil and gas with operations in over 70 countries. BP has a larger economic footprint in the U.S. than in any other nation, and it has invested more than $100 billion here since 2005. BP employs about 14,000 people across the U.S. and supports more than 106,000 additional jobs through all its business activities. For more information on BP in America, visit www.bp.com/us.

About Baker Hughes, a GE company

Baker Hughes, a GE company (NYSE: BHGE) is the world’s first and only full stream provider of integrated oilfield products, services, and digital solutions. We deploy minds and machines to enhance customer productivity, safety, and environmental stewardship while minimizing costs and risks at every step of the energy value chain. With operations in over 120 countries, we infuse over a century of experience with the spirit of a startup – inventing smarter ways to bring energy to the world.

Further Information

Name: BP U.S. Media Affairs
Email: uspress@bp.com

Name: Ashley Nelson
Phone: +1 925 316-9197
Email: ashley.nelson1@ge.com

Name: Gavin Roberts
Phone: +44 7775547365
Email: gavin.roberts@bhge.com

Petroleum Institute announces ‘Explore Offshore’ coalition

TALLAHASSEE — Proponents of drilling for oil and natural gas haven’t given up on tapping areas closer to Florida’s shoreline despite repeated assurances those waters will be exempt from a White House plan to expand exploration.

The Washington, D.C.-based American Petroleum Institute announced Wednesday a multi-state “Explore Offshore” coalition to support the Trump administration’s plan to open previously protected parts of the Atlantic Ocean and the eastern Gulf of Mexico to oil and gas drilling.

The coalition’s Florida team, which is focused on the eastern Gulf waters, includes former Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp, former Okaloosa County Commissioner Wayne Harris, former Puerto Rico state Sen. Miriam Ramirez and Florida Petroleum Council Executive Director David Mica.

Mica said Floridians use more than 25 million gallons of motor fuel a day, while the industry is restricted from “some very, very good areas” that potentially have oil.

We need to do it in an environmentally responsible manner, but we must go forward,” Mica said. “I think that it’s really putting your head in the sand if you think that we’re not going to need a lot more oil and gas into the future and that we can rely only on alternative fuels.”

Many Florida officials, including Gov. Rick Scott, Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Noah Valenstein and members of Florida’s congressional delegation from both sides of the political aisle have denounced the possibility of opening to drilling almost all of the nation’s outer continental shelf — a jurisdictional term describing submerged lands 10.36 statutory miles off Florida’s west coast and 3 nautical miles off the east coast.

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke appeared briefly Jan. 9 in Tallahassee to announce drilling would not occur off the Florida coast. But the Trump administration’s stance has not been formalized and continues to draw questions.

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., on Wednesday equated the petroleum industry’s new coalition with lingering skepticism over Zinke’s assurances that waters off the Florida coast will be exempt from the plan.

“Here we go. Like us, Big Oil doesn’t believe Florida is really ‘off the table’ to new drilling — despite what Scott and the Trump Administration keep saying — and now they are making a new push to drill closer to Florida’s shores,” Nelson tweeted. “We can’t let that happen!”

The federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management is expected to release a draft report on the offshore proposal before the end of the year. That will kick off the second round of public hearings.

Drilling proponents have hailed the prospects of exploring for oil and gas closer to shore as benefiting consumers by potentially creating jobs and additional government revenue while strengthening national security.

The American Petroleum Institute said its coalition features more than 100 businesses, organizations and officials from Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida.

In its release, the institute highlighted Florida’s dependence on natural gas, which generates 67 percent of the state’s electricity, and forecast that offshore development could result in $2.6 billion in private investment in Florida and $1 billion per year in state revenues.

Kottkamp said the “availability of affordable energy is critical” to Florida’s quality of life.

“We look forward to working with our local leaders to discuss ways to maintain our state’s natural beauty while at the same time expanding opportunities to keep our nation energy independent,” Kottkamp said in a statement.

In November, Florida voters will decide whether to approve a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban nearshore oil and gas drilling. That ban would affect state-controlled waters.

Source: Panama City News Herald

Video

The Reality of Digital in Oil & Gas

What does digitization mean for the oil and gas industry?

Digital has been the big buzz word in the industry for some time now – but what exactly does it mean. McKinsey & Company Senior Partner Matt Rogers sat down with the Financial Times US Industry and Energy Editor, Ed Crooks in the first of the Digital Dialogues in Oil & Gas series to discuss the impact of digital in the industry.

Ed Crooks

Ed Crooks

US Industry and Energy Editor

FINANCIAL TIMES

See bio 

Matt Rogers

Matt Rogers

Senior Partner

MCKINSEY & COMPANY

The Financial Times is one of the world’s leading business news organizations, recognized internationally for its authority, integrity, and accuracy. In 2016 the FT passed a significant milestone in its digital transformation as digital and services revenues overtook print revenues for the first time. The FT has a combined paid print and digital circulation of more than 910,000 and makes 60% of revenues from its journalism.

The McKinsey Center for Future Mobility was created to help business leaders and policymakers come to terms with a future that is increasingly autonomous, connected, electrified, and shared. Based in four global hubs (Beijing, Detroit, Munich, and Silicon Valley), our forward-thinking and integrated perspective, industry expertise, proprietary research, and global convening power give us a unique combination of assets to help clients navigate the mobility revolution.

www.mckinsey.com

August 2018, McKinsey & Company, www.mckinsey.com. Copyright (c) 2018 McKinsey & Company. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission.

AkerBP, Cognite and Solution Seeker have entered into a partnership agreement to leverage artificial intelligence (AI) for real-time, data driven production optimization.

First out is the Alvheim field, where Solution Seeker´s ProductionCompass AI solution will utilize all available and relevant data to perform real-time production data analytics and production optimization, including management of the challenging slugging problem at the field through advanced slug data analytics.

“With Alvheim, we embark on a very exciting journey with AkerBP and Cognite to deliver artificial intelligence to maximize oil and gas production based on pure data-driven models. We are honored and proud to be chosen as a strategic partner to AkerBP and Cognite, as AkerBP is clearly one of the most ambitious oil companies driving the digital oilfield agenda.” says Vidar Gunnerud, founder, and CEO of Solution Seeker.

The production data is streamed live from Cognite´s Data Platform, developed in close collaboration with AkerBP to make all data and models readily accessible for all users and systems. The platform facilitates an open ecosystem for advanced applications such as Solution Seeker´s AI.

“We believe Solution Seeker´s AI will enable us to fully leverage and make sense of all our production data, build robust, fast and precise prediction models, and maximize our production in real-time. Their solution plugs directly onto the Cognite Data Platform, accessing all relevant production data, and writing all relevant results from their artificial intelligence back to the platform so other systems and users, in turn, can utilize these new data. In addition to the value this project creates from production optimization, this is a real demonstration of how we want to work with partners through the Cognite platform. This is data liberalization in practice – creating tangible results at every step,” says Signy Vefring, Manager Digitalization Program Office at AkerBP.

Solution Seeker is developing the first artificial intelligence for oil and gas production optimization, leveraging big data and machine learning techniques to solve the continuous optimization problem. The AI is capable of analyzing thousands of historical and live production data streams, identifying field behavior and relations, and automatically and continuously providing the most up to date prediction model to make the optimal choice of production settings.

The AI is currently being developed and deployed in collaboration with ConocoPhillips, Neptune Energy, Wintershall, Lundin, and AkerBP, and will be launched and made commercially available to all operators in 2018. This will disrupt the way operators can maximize production and improve their operations.

Solution Seeker is a technology spin-off from the ICT research group at NTNU Engineering Cybernetics and NTNU’s Centre for Integrated Operations.

Read more about this on Sysla (in Norwegian).

Science-based Collaboratory Brings Diverse Stakeholders Together to Study Methane Emissions from Natural Gas

A new industry-led collaborative research consortium will work to advance methane science to better understand global methane emissions and the need for additional solutions.

The Collaboratory for Advancing Methane Science (CAMS) will pursue scientific studies addressing methane emissions from all sectors along the entire natural gas value chain, from production to end use. Studies will focus on detection, measurement, and quantification of methane emissions with the goal of finding opportunities for reduction.

GTI will serve as the program administrator for the effort with initial participants from leading energy companies Cheniere, Chevron, Equinor, ExxonMobil, and Pioneer Natural Resources, and plans to expand participation to include other companies from across the natural gas value chain. Through scientific studies, CAMS will bring together a diverse group of experts from industry, academia, and federal and state agencies to deliver factual data that can be used to inform regulations and policy development.

GTI will manage the overall program, including individual research projects. CAMS members, with input from an independent Scientific Advisory Board, will prioritize and fund research. CAMS will focus on effectively communicating findings to program stakeholders and the general public. Results will be independently published by the research project team in peer-reviewed scientific journals.

“This is an important collaboration between industry, academia, government, and researchers,” said Amol Phadke, vice president, safety and sustainability for U.S. and Mexico operations, Equinor. “It is a great opportunity to work together in understanding emissions across the value chain, giving us a more complete picture of how we can continue to reduce methane from our operations.”

“As a leading energy company, we are committed to continually reducing methane emissions,” said Sara Ortwein, president of XTO Energy, a subsidiary of ExxonMobil. “The right partnerships are critical for success, and participating in CAMS will expand industry learning on solutions that can make a difference.”

“The use of natural gas is already reducing carbon dioxide and traditional air pollutants in the United States and around the world, but further reduction of methane emissions greater amplifies the positive impact of natural gas,” said Chris Smith, SVP for Policy, Government and Public Affairs at Cheniere, the largest U.S. exporter of LNG. “Supporting peer-reviewed science is an important first step as we look for ways to encourage the reduction of methane emissions throughout the domestic natural gas value chain.”

The research will complement recent methane emissions studies sponsored by government agencies and academia, and build on lessons learned from that body of work. New tools and technologies to better detect leaks and characterize emissions will be evaluated, and practical solutions for emissions reduction will be identified.

6/25/18 Des Plaines, IL

Source: The Collaboratory to Advance Methane Science (CAMS) 

 

Most Popular Topics

Editor Picks