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Using renewable energy can help the oil and gas industry to reduce emissions while getting a stable, high-quality power supply. The renewable energy system can even be used to help the oil and gas facilities with enhanced oil recovery (EOR). These are the results from a project Floating Power Plant (FPP) has just finished with Lundin Energy Norway, NOV-APL, Semco Maritime, Cefront Technologies, and Aalborg University using floating wind and wave power to support an offshore oil and gas facility. The project developed three different designs to see if the concepts set up by the partners were usable solutions from an engineering point of view and as a commercial business case. Intermittent direct power—a simple integration of floating wind and wave power into an oil and gas facility Baseload power—based on the intermittent direct power design, energy storage in the form of batteries, and diesel generators that have been integrated to provide baseload or partial baseload power EOR—integration of a full EOR-system placed on FPP's platform, enabling 10,000 m3 processed water injection per day with a minimum injection rate of 5,000 m3 "All three designs proved to be viable and promising from both a technical and a business point of view, and they can be used in different commercial situations."
Velentium and Oasis Testing have collaborated for several years, including their recent combined efforts in manufacturing critically needed ventilators during the pandemic. With the acquisition of Oasis, medical device designer and manufacturer Velentium expands its mechanical design-based solutions to energy and manufacturing. Prepandemic, Velentium gained Ventec Life Systems, GM’s partner in the manufacturing of ventilators, as a client in 2015. Velentium created automated test systems for Ventec’s ventilator production line, which, at the time, had the capacity to produce a few hundred units per month.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is serving companies across a broad array of industries. It's not about replacing human workers with machine counterparts but rather helping businesses operate more effectively in their fields and expand to new horizons and capabilities. Scott Matteson spoke with AJ Abdallat, chief executive officer and founder of Beyond Limits, an enterprise AI solution provider, to see how AI has been fulfilling its promise in the business realm. Scott Matteson: How is AI playing a role in operational efficiency in the oil and gas, energy, manufacturing, and healthcare fields? AJ Abdallat: AI is playing a critical role in operational efficiency across the energy value chain to optimize resource production, democratize domain expert knowledge, and increase value while reducing environmental risk.
Oil and gas industry interest is surging in using remote survey technologies for more cost-efficient, safer, and lower-carbon certification, verification, and inspection of assets and operations. Amid COVID-19 travel restrictions in 2020, DNV GL has conducted more than 4,000 remote surveys for the sector. These have provided the supply chain with the assurance it needs to keep projects and operations running safely and on schedule. Remote surveys involve fixed and mobile cameras (e.g., smartphones) giving customers instant access to DNV GL experts worldwide for verification, classification, and certification of assets, verification of materials and components, inspection, and marine assurance. The growing track record for remote survey technology could soon make it the method of choice for inspections in some places and circumstances, according to a senior expert at one leading oil and gas exploration and production company.
The New Mexico State Land Office announced in December that it will be halting the practice of allowing fresh water to be pumped from state trust land and sold for use in oil and gas development. Land Commissioner Stephanie Garcia Richard detailed the shift in policy in a letter to companies that hold easements that grant access to trust land for pumping fresh water. Under the change, existing easements will not be renewed once they expire and no new easements will be issued. She pointed to the scarcity of fresh water resources in New Mexico, saying the policy is aimed at encouraging the industry to use recycled water or produced water, which is waste water that result from oil and gas operations. The agency cited data reported by companies to FracFocus, a national registry, that indicated nearly 14.5 billion gallons of water were used for overall production in New Mexico in 2019, with recycled or produced water making up only a fraction of the total use.
Geothermal energy has been described as an engineering problem that, when solved, provides the clean, reliable, safe, and affordable energy being sought globally. It is highly likely that the engineers who play the biggest role in solving that problem, and the technologies they adapt and advance, will come from oil and gas. There is enough energy in the earth’s crust, just a few miles down, to power all of humanity for ages, according to the US Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy. The problem is how to tap into it safely, efficiently, and cost effectively. After many years of failure to launch because of technology or cost limitations, new companies and technologies—and smarter ways of leveraging those that already exist—are bringing geothermal out of its doldrums, to the point that it may finally be ready to scale and become a major player in the transition to cleaner energy, according to Jamie Beard, executive director of the Geothermal Entrepreneurship Organization (GEO) at The University of Texas at Austin (UT-Austin).
Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone. As individuals, and certainly as SPE, we must be ready to cautiously open our sails. The pandemic may be at or near its peak, and despite relatively strong economic performance in most sectors, we know that the global economy remains fragile. As an industry, we don’t have the luxury of waiting. We must provide energy and feedstock in advance of global needs, so it is time to get busy and plan not for what was but for what will be.
How does an oil and gas industry association specializing in environmental and social performance adapt to a world aiming for net-zero emissions with a membership rapidly changing in response? The world of energy and mobility is experiencing unprecedented change. The response to climate change and the need for sustainable development and the economic consequences of a pandemic are leading to fluctuations in energy demand and changes in the energy mix and how oil and gas companies adapt their strategies and portfolios. As head of IPIECA, the global oil and gas industry association for advancing environmental and social performance, I have been involved in developing a new strategy to drive the work of the group over the next 4 years. We have just finalized the strategy, which includes some major steps that will answer the opening question.
US petroleum engineering programs stayed on trend this school year with another significant drop at a time when very little else went as expected. The number of petroleum engineering graduates earning a BS for the school year ending in 2021 is expected to drop by 25% from last year, according to the annual survey of petroleum engineering enrollment done by Lloyd Heinze, a petroleum engineering professor at Texas Tech University. It is the lowest number of graduates since 2009, when the US shale boom was just taking off, and is at a bit more than a third of the peak graduation rate hit in 2016. Based on undergraduate enrollment, this slide may be nearing its bottom in 2022, when only 626 petroleum engineering graduates are expected, Heinze said. But this past year has been a reminder that extremely unlikely events do happen. No one predicted the tidal wave of troubles and changes triggered by COVID-19.
Despite having many of the technologies enabled by advanced connectivity already at its disposal, the oil and gas sector has yet to realize much of connectivity’s potential—and the potential is significant. According to McKinsey's estimates, making use of advanced connectivity to optimize drilling and production throughput and improve maintenance and field operations could add up to $250 billion of value to the industry’s upstream operations by 2030. Of that value, between $160 billion and $180 billion could be realized with existing infrastructure, while an additional $70 billion could be unlocked with low-Earth orbit satellites and next-generation 5G technologies. McKinsey’s work with the oil and gas sector suggests offshore operators can reduce costs, including operational and capital expenditures, by 20 to 25% per barrel by relying on connectivity to deploy digital tools and analytics. Such a dramatic technological lift can’t come soon enough.