If the oil and gas industry is to survive in the current market and thrive in the Net-Zero market of tomorrow, companies cannot afford to drag their feet when it comes to digital transformation and embracing digitalization. To speed up their maturation up companies need to start cutting through the digital deluge to streamline their digital tool box.
It’s important companies adopt a future-ready mind-set now if they want to stay ahead of the pack in an increasingly competitive environment. Operations need to be smarter, more efficient, cleaner and increasingly responsive to changing economics. As the cost of digitalization drops and a wider range of advanced technologies become available, companies who play the digital revolution right could gain a serious advantage over their upstream oil and gas competitors.
Supermajors such as Shell, Equinor, Exxon and Total are already aware of this advantage and are investing heavily in technologies that will enhance their operating excellence while securing them a foothold in a market where fossil fuels will eventually ebb away. Market downturns and moderating operational gains have provided an extra incentive, or push some might say, for companies to save millions from their operating costs, and most importantly, make their assets work harder for longer.
Consolidate your digital tool box
The digital world is a fast moving sphere with a web of interdependencies between technologies and it seems that every year more and more digital solutions reach the market. According to Gartner, out of the more than 200 technologies listed on Gartner’s Hype Cycle from 2000 to 2016, over 50 individual technologies appeared for just a single year.
Due to the capital-intensive nature of the oil and gas industry and high costs associated with switching, companies cannot adopt a trial-and-error approach to digital transformation. Oil and gas operators tend to be reluctant early adopters, preferring instead to wait and see how others fare with the technology, but it’s this hesitancy that slows down progress. In addition, previous digital failures may also be adding to this hesitancy on the part of management to invest further in digital new digital tools.
Other companies, who are keen to progress to digital maturity and operational excellence, often take a multi-technology approach, resulting in a digital deluge that leads to information being spread across numerous different systems. This distribution of data means workers often waste time trying to find, access and transfer the data they need to do their job. It also means that workers may start to suffer digital fatigue and grow cynical towards new tools. Where there is no consistency towards digital upgrades, people will prefer to stick to what they know.
Oil and gas players need to shift their mind-set and take a top-down approach to consolidate their digital tool box and data into one open API based platform, akin to FutureOn’s FieldTwin and FieldTwin design.
Digital twins can help streamline your digital solutions
Digital twin technologies can help organizations speed up their digital transformation through digitalization of their processes and data at every stage of project lifecycle. FutureOn’s online platforms bring siloed data together to create highly detailed visualizations that are accessible and can be updated in real-time by team members.
The digitalization of under-utilized data can also unlock value through increased operational excellence, a deeper understanding of production assets and streamlined workflows. 3D modelling, similar to a gaming environment, provides a real-life, immersive subsea experience from the desktop, thereby making it easier to plan, design, and create assets, which can significantly speed up the time to profitability.
GIS mapping data, bathymetry, topography, existing infrastructure and other physical constraints are combined with proprietary information such as reservoir data and well data and drilling can be used via a single platform to enhance project planning, design and operation. Metadata can then be introduced based on cross-industry standards. The result, built using FieldTwin API technology, is a virtual twin of a future project that can be utilized in planning and also allows for the creation of meaningful production and operational forecasts over time.