As all our readers know, we here at InnovOil love information, data and keeping the world informed about the latest technology and innovation the oil and gas industry has to offer. It was only a matter of time before we dedicated a whole issue to checking out the latest developments in digital and visualisation solutions.
To be fair, the importance of timing is a lesson the industry has had to learn quite painfully in the last few years. When oil prices can go from over US$100 per barrel to under US$30 in under two years, the sooner you get a field up and running, the better you can take advantage of oil prices at their peak, or avoid the ravines.
Better forecasting models can help companies work out how long a field will take to develop, how long it will produce for, how high the oil price needs to be to make a profit, and then help them decide where to invest.
This issue of InnovOil features some of the software available to help a company develop its assets. We look at the recent developments made in integrated asset modelling, with Serafim’s FUTURE forecasting system promising to provide accurate predictions about a field’s behaviour in a matter of minutes.
Then we check out FutureOn’s visualisation software, which can create a digital twin of an oil and gas field that can be manipulated in real time to improve planning.
Digital solutions can also create synergy, across companies and between them. When data are centralised and easily accessible, all of a company’s different departments can work from the same information, reducing redundancies and miscommunication.
Companies are also offering their digital solutions as platforms that can integrate services from other companies. The more data a company can bring in, and the more sources it draws on, the better informed decisions it can make.
Services like Cyberhawk’s iHawk data platform can aggregate information gathered not just from the company’s signature drones, but from other streams as well. These data can then be stored and accessed by everyone in the company, and even shared with contractors.
And to top things off, InnovOil has found out about how Rawwater gathered data on oilfield souring and how this helps them solve a problem that has been plaguing oil production for decades.
Plus, we learn about Tendeka’s MajiFrac technology for hydraulic fracturing and MGX’s new petrolithium wastewater system.
All of these are helping the oil and gas industry learn hard lessons from the oil price shock. After years of slashing costs, companies are starting to invest in new technology in order to capitalise on efficiency gains.
However, the industry that develops in the next few years will be different to the one we’ve been used to. Oil and gas has been slow to fully embrace digital solutions and automation, partly because revenues were high enough for most problems to be solved by hiring more people. Automation and digitisation will see workforces shrinking in the same way as most other industries that have embraced these methods.
The rule for the digital era is that data breed data. It’s in the next few years that we’re going to find out exactly what the oil and gas industry of the future looks like.
For all this and more, read on. The team and I are pleased to present the December issue of InnovOiI.