Understanding the Role of Technology in Gas and Oil Safety Management
While efforts to improve green energy continue to grow, the fossil fuel industry will be a necessity for many years to come. Oil and gas companies are doing their part by looking for ways to increase the efficiency and decrease the environmental impact of their facilities. Utilizing new technology in oil and gas is a critical step for improving the next generation of fossil fuel infrastructure.
Emerging Oil and Gas Industry Technology
As new information and communication technologies arise, oil and gas companies find applications for them. Recent innovations include tools to keep fossil fuel processing and districution safer, cleaner, and more efficient.
Drone Technology to Enhance Oil & Gas Safety
Oil and gas companies cover a broad territory. Oil fields encompass many acres with multiple pump facilities. Pipelines can stretch for miles over difficult terrain. Checking the safety and maintenance of these assets manually is a challenge.
New drone technology makes it possible to conduct regular visual inspections of pipelines, offshore oil rigs, and other facilities quickly and safely. Modern drones can carry light instruments allowing for temperature checks with infrared scanning. Other sensors can detect hazards like toxic chemicals from a safe distance. Using robotic technology to enhance oil & gas safety prevents environmental damage while keeping workers safe.
Virtual and Augmented Reality for Advanced Maintenance and Training
A fast response is essential when an emergency arises at an oil and gas facility. It can be difficult to train employees in the field. However, virtual reality allows workers to experience realistic simulations of facility conditions, preparing them to react to hazards quickly.
Augmented reality helps workers analyze plant conditions. For example, an AR overlay can display instructions, standard readings, and other information to facilitate repairs. In an offshore oil rig, a worker also might use AR to consult with a remote expert while conducting repair tasks.
Cloud Computing and Cyber Security for Oil Rigs and Other Assets
Oil and gas facilities produce large streams of data. New communications technology makes it easier to transfer and protect this information. Cloud computing involves storing data at several remote servers instead of servers at the facility. Because the information does not stay at the rig, it protects data even if storm damage shuts down the facility.
Cloud computing also takes some of the pressure of cybersecurity away from the facility. The data storage partner becomes responsible for data safety. Because cloud servers are devoted to data storage, they often have more robust security measures than local IT staff.
Oil Information Technology and Big Data Analysis
Data analytics is another emerging technology field impacting the oil and gas industry. Combining big data with artificial intelligence offers new insights into old processes. For example, examining seismic oil field data improves the drilling process, increasing productivity and yield.
Other data streams provide information about the health and maintenance of facilities. Comparing current and historical data sets allows maintenance teams to monitor the performance of equipment. This practice allows for a more intentional approach to equipment maintenance and repair, addressing assets as their performance changes rather than on a predetermined schedule.
Artificial Intelligence and Increased Efficiency
AI is transforming many sectors, and the oil and gas industry is no different. In addition to empowering data analysis, AI can also automate processes to respond to changing conditions. The ability for an immediate reaction is critical when dealing with natural disasters and other threats.
Working with AI is also essential to improving efficiency. Analyzing performance data helps facilities streamline their processes and inventory management. In distribution, an AI resource can track a fleet throughout the country to anticipate demand and determine ideal routes.
SCADA Technology in the Oil and Gas Industry
Modern System Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems are working in tandem with several emerging fields in oil and gas industry technology. Acquiring data from multiple sensors is the essence of a SCADA system. Analyzing the collected performance data with AI streamlines facility processes and empowers intelligent safety decisions. Cloud-based SCADA systems provide remote data access to anyone on the network, providing constant oversight from any location.
High Tide Technologies designs cloud-based SCADA systems for the oil and gas industry. Our products allow facilities to monitor factors such as pipeline flow rates and distribution system pressures from a handheld device. Contact us today to learn more about how our SCADA solutions can improve the safety and efficiency of your oil and gas facility.