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The oil and gas industry is increasingly deploying digital twin technology to help reduce costs and make operations more sustainable through better decision-making. Gartner predicts that half of major industrial applications will be using digital twins by 2021, potentially increasing their operational effectiveness by 10%.

Over the past decade, the oil and gas market has been on a bit of a white-knuckle and unpredictable rollercoaster ride. The pandemic brought about a demand disruption that no one could have foreseen. Worldwide lockdowns have hastened and exacerbated the downturn in the industry by causing project delays due to supply chain disruptions.

Combined with a nosedive in oil prices and an almost overnight shift to remote working, Covid-19 has heightened the need for companies to adopt a leaner and tighter approach to their operations. Poor supply and weakening demand caused by the pandemic, are pushing oil companies to quickly find innovative solutions to reduce OPEX and CAPEX to maintain cash flows.

Integrated solutions such as, digital twins, can help achieve this by improving overall asset visibility and providing operators with the data they need to make more evidence-based decisions that will have the most significant impact on the bottom-line, whilst boosting long-term operational sustainability.

Digital twins provide answers to hard questions

In a market with rapidly thinning margins and almost no room for error, digital twins are becoming a mainstay piece of software for oil and gas operations. Having a digital twin enables operators to build models that allow them to run simulations of various scenarios quickly and more accurately.

Using the digitally replicated asset or field, project engineers can safely test real-world problems and visualize the results in 3D. Problems can be identified early on, which means project teams can make more informed decisions about how to proceed and thereby minimize the need for costly revisions or project downtime.

From selecting asset materials, estimating project parameters to determining what interventions should be taken, the digital twin makes running these calculations easier, faster and more accurate.

Traditionally, these types of decisions would have been both time and labor intensive for teams, but with the tools provided by a digital twin platform these same processes can be reduced to a matter of days rather than weeks or even months, thus minimizing project delays and massively improving accuracy.

By helping improve the project teams overall understanding of the asset – its operational capacity, lifecycle history, reliability and structure –teams are better able to optimize asset performance, extend the shelf life of an asset and generate more value for the business.

A digital twin lets you see the asset in the here and now

The technology surrounding digital twins has advanced rapidly over the years, now thanks to connected IoT sensors, big data, machine learning, cloud-computing and 3D modelling digital twins can do more than ever before.

Today’s digital twins allows users to understand and see what’s happening with the physical asset in the present and make data-based predictions about its operation and maintenance in the future. Automatically updated in real-time, a digital twin acts as a repository for a single source of digital truth that threads through the asset’s lifecycle.

This ongoing archive of project data can help assist in the efficient planning and execution of inspection and maintenance activities, facilitate the safe incorporation of future modifications, reduce the future cost of decommissioning, help ensure that facilities meet new operational standards, and even speed up the handover and sign-off of an asset to another operator.

How FutureOn digital twins improve decision making

FutureOn’s digital twin software speeds up and enhances decision making by enabling operators to unlock the power of their data, which could potentially save their business billions in capital through improved efficiencies and enhanced safety.

Our platforms continuously gather and translate complex project data into highly detailed 3D visual representations of oil and gas assets. Users can upload additional information to the platform e.g. bathymetry data insights directly into their project, allowing them to build a more comprehensive picture of their equipment and its surrounding environment.

This improved visibility allows our customers to create safer and more responsive operating conditions, lower risks and better preserve the integrity of field equipment. It also enables them to present concepts as dynamic data to key decision makers and the proposed modifications can be reviewed in real-time via the platform.

Bringing all project stakeholders together like this via one interactive and easily accessible interface this can help reduce decision making delays and ensures that each department is aligned to overall project goals.

Our technology breaks down data silos, reduces the risk of misunderstandings, improves accessibility and provides universal checkpoints to ensure data validity during the entire project. Early reports show that our software reduces pre-FEED field planning time and investment by at least 60%.

To find out more about how FutureOn’s cloud-based digital twin solutions can help your company use data to power your business decisions or for enquiries about partnership opportunities please contact us or book a demo.