Opportunities for Automation, Internet of Things, Big Data Analytics and 3D Printing within Oil and Gas Drilling, Production and Transport.
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The oil price drop of 2014 caused huge concerns for O&G (oil and gas) producers around the world, as their revenues suddenly fell rapidly. The high revenues of earlier years made spending into people and project unproblematic, even without profits in mind. When prices dropped, unprofitable projects and people were dismissed in order to reduce operation expenses to accommodate the new O&G prices. While this method is a fast and effective way of reducing costs, it will reach a point where no further discharges are possible. Innovation is the next logical step for companies seeking to lower their costs. This process takes time, effort and knowledge, and the returns are uncertain. However, it could be a necessary step in order to survive in a competitive and volatile market. Innovation often come from the use of technological trends, and this thesis explains the trends of Automation, Big data analytics, Internet of Things and 3D printing, and assesses opportunities within O&G drilling, production and transport where they can be applicable. The innovations I have selected within these trends: Automation – Automated drilling operations, Autonomous underwater vehicles and Autonomous transportation. Big data analytics – Subsea production systems. 3D printing – O&G components production and On-site 3D printing. IoT – Pipeline inspection and monitoring and IoT as support. Automation is a great way of reducing OPEX (operating expenditure) by reducing labor costs and human error related costs. The precision and speed of automated machines can outperform manual labor significantly, while keeping humans out of harm’s way. Big data analytics will in the future become necessary in order to keep up with the amount of inputs and parameters of complex systems. It is then highly important to design a strong framework that can extract the most useful information out of the system, organize it and make decisions based on it. 3D printing has the potential to be disruptive in many aspects in the O&G supply chain. 3D printing’s biggest advantage is availability of parts, as it can create parts on demand. This proves useful for lowering logistics costs and the speed of development of products. IoT is useful in a lot of machinery in O&G drilling, production and transport. It provides remote controllability, monitoring and updates, which can improve cost, efficiency and safety.
Master's thesis in Offshore technology