Playbooks Supplements

Data-Driven Oil Fields 2017

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23 EPMAG.COM | DATA-DRIVEN OIL FIELDS | JANUARY 2017 tight geological formations. This is requiring more com- plex systems than ever–some with more than 200,000 tags of data and alarms; and • Expanding regulatory challenges: Environmental and safety regulations continue to evolve as governments con- tinue to put pressure on oil and gas companies to help prevent environmental damage and protect lives. This is only making compliance more complex. Moving to a connected enterprise The unconnected and distributed nature of oil and gas op- erations has traditionally limited companies in their ability to collect data. But this is changing as they adopt connected, information-enabled technologies and replace disparate networks with a uni- fied network architecture. This modern infrastructure–in which people, processes and technologies can be seamlessly connected across an enterprise that stretches hundreds or thousands of miles–is known as The Connected Enterprise. It embraces technology advances that include not only big data and analytics but also open-standard IoT devices, mobility, virtualization and cloud computing. Most importantly, it creates nearly un- limited opportunities to improve and transform operations. The Connected Enterprise presents the oil and gas industry some key opportunities: • By collecting valuable asset data and contextualizing it into actionable information, oil and gas companies can empower workers with critical operational information and help them optimize equipment performance; • Equipment data also can be used to more quickly trou- bleshoot issues, create predictive maintenance strategies, and better understand worker behaviors–all of which can help reduce downtime; and • Remote-access technology can be used to monitor re- mote wellheads, pump stations and storage sites, all from a centralized location. This can help reduce safety risks and costs associated with sending workers to manually check in on these systems. These opportunities are not just theoretical. A number of oil and gas producers and operators are already demonstrating how connected, information-driven operations can improve their performance and solve business challenges. Keeping tabs on offshore operations Even in the most remote and challenging environments, op- erations are expected to run around the clock. That's certainly the case for one oil and gas company with offshore production platforms located off Alaska's coast. The company's oil-drilling platforms use submersible pumps to help keep production running 24 hours per day. If they stop, production stops–costing the company anywhere from $100,000 to $300,000 each day. To help reduce risk of downtime, the company upgraded to more efficient and reliable electrical submersible pumps and used a virtual-support service to remotely monitor the drives that power the pumps. The cloud-based service collects key equipment data, such as speed, current, power and voltage, and analyzes that data in real time. If any potential issues or failures are detected, a Rockwell Automation support engi- neer is notified immediately. The ser- vice nearly paid for itself in the first two weeks, as it helped detect and notify key personnel of four incidents in that time frame after implementation. Refining business models onshore Onshore, the use of cloud technology is growing as a remote-monitoring tool as well as for storing data and analyz- ing and contextualizing information. For example, M.G. Bryan, a leading heavy-equipment and machinery sup- plier to the oil and gas industry, knew it needed a way to remotely monitor and maintain the performance of its $1 million fracking trucks. Downtime on the vehicles can cost $3,000 to $7,000 per day– and that's before lost product revenues are taken into account. The company invested in a cloud-based, fleet-management system. Using mobile technology and the seamless transfer of business information over the cloud, M.G. Bryan securely pulls data to web browsers. Then, the software management system produces reports and dashboards showing the condition of individual vehicle's drivetrains and hydraulic fracturing per- formance. The system takes the guesswork out of maintenance scheduling, thus helping prevent unplanned downtime. In addition, the instant visibility into remote-asset data has improved asset uptime and productivity for end users. It's also allowed the OEM to shift its business model from monthly agreements to pay-by-use, giving the company a competitive advantage. By using the cloud, M.G. Bryan maintains no in- frastructure, and it can scale the solution from one truck to 4,000 trucks. Managing midstream transfers Solutions that advance The Connected Enterprise have helped streamline and better secure midstream operations too, including an essential corner of the oil business–hydrocarbon transfers. Better insights into processes can uncover issues and improve decision-making to help boost production, improve processes, minimize downtime and increase asset utilization.

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