Globuc recently spoke to Thornton Brewer, Marketing Manager at FutureOn about how digitalization is transforming the offshore industry and which solutions are affecting it the most.
FutureOn is a PaaS digital technology firm supporting energy companies’ subsea field development projects through the use of a cloud-based platform.
How is digitalization transforming the offshore industry?
Digitalization is transforming the offshore industry most crucially through the visualization and integration of offshore data. Historically, pre-digitalization, field and operations data languished in data silos. Now, through digitalization of that data and storage of that data in a Cloud-based ecosystem, it is increasingly becoming accessible to engineers and project managers. By accessing data within an organization through a cloud environment engineers and project managers in offices and oilfields around the world are able to collaboratively make better and quicker decisions about offshore assets due to sharing a single source of data truth.
Additionally, by breaking open data silos, there are increasing opportunities to make unique and transformative connections between non-linear data. Through digitalization, an operations engineer can record production data which is in turn used by green-field development teams to improve a future field’s layout to optimize installation and production.
The above scenarios describe current digitalization capabilities that exist in the market now and which oil and gas companies can implement immediately to improve capital efficiency. An emerging digitalization technology which has the extraordinary potential to revolutionize and transform the industry is AI. By leveraging the power of AI, energy companies can better access their historical data and turn this into predictive data models, which creates opportunities for capital and operational efficiency improvements both in future planning and in daily operations. IT and computer specialists are just now beginning to scratch the surface of what AI can accomplish for the oil and gas offshore industry when properly leveraged.
Which solutions are affecting it the most? And which are bringing the greatest results?
The Digital Twin has the greatest potential to positively affect the offshore industry out of all digitalization technologies. Unlike other technologies which focus on digitalizing the offshore industry through specific and narrow improvements that target upstream planning, field development, or operations, the Digital Twin is a comprehensive digital data solution. The Digital Twin, when fully implemented, has the capacity to visualize an offshore field and its data in its entirety. A complete digital replica of a real-world field, its data, and its assets means that operators are able to improve real-time operations, track historical changes to the field, and create models for future fields with improvements based on existing digital field twins.
How is the digital oilfield re-defining the approach to exploration and production?
With regard to early field development, the digitalization of the oilfield has created opportunities and capabilities for EPC companies and Operators to develop exponentially more field concepts and layouts in the same amount of time as previously was required to develop single field layout concepts.
In production, the digitalization of the offshore oilfield has re-defined daily production goals and operations. Through leveraging Cloud-based technology and integrated engineering tools in a single platform, operators are able to more quickly and accurately manage production levels and asset maintenance. As subsea assets increasingly become smart through IoT sensors, the role of the Digital Twin becomes more important to the healthy functioning of the oilfield. By visualizing asset data, engineers are able to more comprehensively map assets’ statuses, maintenance records, and intervene with preventative maintenance before equipment breaks down and causes significant delays in operations and production.
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