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The oil tanker Nave Andromeda off the coast of England on 25 October before British armed forces regained control of the ship. British armed forces forcibly boarded and regained control of an oil tanker in the English Channel on the evening of 25 October following a suspected hijacking, according to the UK defense ministry. The vessel, the Nave Andromeda, attracted attention after failing to dock as expected in Southampton on the south coast of England. A spokesperson for Hampshire police said that seven men were arrested "on suspicion of seizing or exercising control of a ship by use of threats or force." "They all remain in custody at police stations across Hampshire," the statement added.
Engie delayed its decision to sign a 20-year, $7-billion supply contract with NextDecade’s 27-mtpa Rio Grande LNG (RGLNG) project in Brownsville, Texas, following emission concerns from the French government. France has a 23.6% stake in Engie, which informed Reuters its board decided on 30 September it would give itself more time to study the contract, which “required a more detailed examination”. The supply deal would run until 2045, with exports expected in 2026. NextDecade did not address the matter, but already has plans in place to reduce emissions. The company said in July the project would utilize five LNG trains instead of its original plan for six.
Another potential hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM) is on a path toward Louisiana this week, leading oil and gas operators to evacuate offshore facilities and shut in production. Tropical Storm Zeta hit Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula on Monday as a Category 1 hurricane before it weakened. Zeta is expected to hit Louisiana at or near hurricane strength on Wednesday. The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) activated its hurricane response team in response to the severe weather. Based on operator reports, BSEE said personnel was evacuated from 154 production platforms (24% of 643 manned GOM platforms) and three nondynamically positioned rigs (30% of 10).
The coronavirus crisis had a devastating effect on oil-company revenues, but it’s posed a tough human-resources problem too: how to keep workers safe on cramped rigs at sea where social-distancing is impossible. Many operators have found an answer in technology—specifically, digital twins. These interactive 3D simulations of oil platforms and plants allow engineers to avoid toiling for weeks in the sweaty, close confines of a wind-battered rig, instead gaining virtual access from home. Digital twins aren’t a new idea, but advances in computing—and widespread coronavirus restrictions—have helped them go mainstream in the oil industry, where the pandemic has swept through teams of engineers working elbow-to-elbow offshore. The North Sea has seen multiple cases of coronavirus among rig workers.
Tom Blasingame, the SPE 2020 President, holds the gavel for the first time at the SPE Annual Technology Conference and Exhibition. Ever since Tom Blasingame was announced as the 2021 SPE President more than a year ago he had been looking forward to the day he would officially assume the highest-ranking volunteer position within the organization. That moment finally came, but not quite as he or anyone else expected. Blasingame, an SPE Distinguished Member and petroleum engineering professor at Texas A&M University, officially assumed his new duties during a small ceremony attended by invited guests and SPE staff in Houston on Monday. The event helped kickoff the SPE’s Annual Technology Conference and Exhibition (ATCE) that runs for most of this week.
The world has entered an era of data-driven technologies with the advent of smartphones. These technologies with a fast-paced trend have significantly changed many aspects of life, extending from the operational manner of the e-commerce industry to the way online job interviews are vetted. In the past few years, the petroleum industry has increasingly adopted data-driven technologies to generate insights for driving better business outcomes. According to a 2018 McKinsey article (Anders and Zharkeshov 2018), with a stable backbone of streamlined operations in place, there are a number of organizations that can benefit from the enhanced productivity that digital- and analytics-driven approaches created. Yet, due to the black-box nature of some data-driven algorithms, industry experts tend to be careful with them.
Subsea-technology company Hydromea has revealed its new subsea wireless communication modem, LUMA X. The company says that enables real-time streaming of HD-quality video and 4K images wirelessly through water, allowing the operators of autonomous underwater vehicles to monitor its interventions from its control rooms onshore. With our focus on miniaturization and scalability, LUMA X is the first optical device of its kind in such form factor with these impressive characteristics. It is also extremely power-efficient, which makes it suited for battery-powered applications to collect data without running a cable. Moreover, it is sensitive enough to not requiring direct line of sight to communicate in murky waters.”