Smart Oil and Gas
Oil is Draining from Earth. It Starts with the right organization.
Improving the productivity of oil and gas wells has always been a priority for energy operators. This has become even more important recently, especially with the fact that most easy conventional reservoirs have been already developed and produced. The growing demand for oil and gas makes it imperative to develop unconventional reservoirs in order to supply enough energy to the world. In fact, that is associated with an increase in the drilling and workover costs while drilling in deep waters, as well as other offshore and horizontal wells. Unconventional reservoirs are usually high risk and require huge early investments in order to be developed which drives the investors away from investing in them. In addition to that, unconventional reservoirs are complicated, hard to develop and most of the time uneconomical to invest in. Smart ways and methods are needed to increase the profitability of such projects. Therefore, it is essential to develop “smart” ways to produce oil and gas from unconventional reservoirs.
IoT in the Oil and Gas Industry
The oil and gas industry is responsible for over 61% of global energy production. Fuel losses in the United States amount to $10 billion each year due to thefts and leaks. According to statistics, approximately 2.5 million miles of pipelines in America have an average of 93 leaks per mile. Companies operating in the midstream sector of the oil and gas industry need to improve the reliability and safety of pipelines to reduce this number. For this reason, they invested in human capital and operational hardware to overcome problems, but that did not work. Therefore, there is a need for data-driven infrastructure and smart solutions.
Causes of Leaks in Pipelines
There is an assortment of drastic causes of leakage that are well-known among the many reasons and predictions. Researchers discovered that corrosion is responsible for 61% of all pipeline leakages, compared to 39% of pipeline leakages due to miscellaneous factors.
Therefore, it is essential to monitor these leakages as they can have a significant impact on energy production around the globe.
Companies need to have visibility from all points of the pipelines in order to eliminate the oil and gas leakage problem. It is impossible for downstream businesses, however, to track all leakages in the distribution pipelines.
Smart Solutions for Leakage Detection
The lack of integrated technology to detect leakage in the downstream and midstream oil and gas sectors means that there is no solution. The oil and gas industry wants to make the existing method better for detecting pipeline leakage. This will make the industry safer and more sustainable over the next 100 years.
The need for an alternative solution is urgently felt as the detection of leaks becomes more difficult, particularly in remote wells. A handful of industries are now opting for smart solutions to leverage their existing resources.
Pipeline Monitoring in Remote Areas
A pipeline monitoring system can detect any leakage within the pipeline. Leakage is detected in real-time by IoT sensors. This ensures that oil and gas operations are safe. This system helps track every meter of the pipeline and it sends alerts to the control room. Supervisors receive the alerts and can then shut down the pipeline if it is dangerous.
Real-Time Equipment Monitoring
The efficiency and consistency of pipeline and equipment operation are crucial for the oil and gas industry. Unmonitored pressure and excessive vibrations can cause severe losses. IoT sensors, which are implemented with smart solutions, help in monitoring pumps, motors and compressors in oil and gas supply.
Sensors also detect temperature, pulses, and dynamic pressure. Meanwhile, sensors in engines detect emissions to help avoid huge losses.
Smart Solutions for Methane Gas Detection
Smart IoT sensors detect methane, a combustible gas. They perform best at temperatures of 20 degrees Celsius and humidity levels of 65%. The sensors can detect gases in very small quantities, thus preventing explosions.