Shared project forums and next-level integration will drive offshore change. The offshore energy sector’s drive to meet the challenges of accelerating energy transition, to achieve lower costs and deliver security of supply, brings new digital solutions to the forefront of Integrated Energy Company’s (IECs) technology focus.
Complex offshore project landscapes, across all project phases and throughout life of field, demand maximum efficiencies with a view to achieve optimised production and emission reductions in line with net-zero ambitions.
The future energy landscape will be far more integrated than the incarnation we see today. This is already evident in the evolution of the oil super-majors into Integrated Energy Companies and the respective pivot of the major engineering and installation contractors into renewables. FutureOn recognise this shift and has developed the FieldTwin platform as an agnostic offering with respect to energy verticals. Asset operators or project developers can design and collaborate around projects of any type within the same FieldTwin platform.
The right digital technologies help IECs to achieve those goals by enabling full integration to existing mission critical best-in-class software, virtually unlimited scenario modelling, with a continuous record and digital thread. These are presented in context by leveraging high-definition 3D visualisation pioneered in the gaming industry.
Next-generation design, visualisation and digital twin tools are game changers in this new project environment, leveraging the power data and the hard-won industry experience to maximise project efficiencies and returns.
And the opportunities are vast.
Digital technologies can be deployed at any and every stage development – from early concept and feasibility studies, through operations and ultimately de-commissioning. The value and advantages are apparent in legacy projects, offshore electrification and tiebacks to brownfield facilities. Technology leverages the power of historic data in a data mesh that is generally held in siloed databases and applications across different disciples within operators and their partner engineering companies.
Digital pioneers including Norwegian company FutureOn, with its innovative FieldTwin software, are at the leading edge of this transformation. They provide the world’s major operators with additional context for both their legacy data and new plans and the accuracy and awareness needed for making superior decisions required for long term success.
Shifting the baseline
Digitalisation and visualisation help to minimise the risk of field design from an early stage. Collaboration between individuals and teams ensures that ideas are leveraged, rather than siloed, and that projects tap the power of data to ensure maximum output at the lowest possible cost – whether financial or environmental.
FieldTwin enables operators and partners to create a dynamically changing blueprint for field development, allowing full manipulation and evaluation of a catalogue of development concepts in a data-rich environment and providing better context and insights.
The results include:
- An accelerated timeline that reduces design costs;
- More dependable field planning that creates accurate projections of technical and investment requirements;
- Streamlined contracting and execution based on reduced variability and narrower margins of error
All bringing better returns on capital deployed and the lowest possible emissions profile.
For operational assets, digital platforms provide real-time monitoring of every facet of ongoing energy projects whether oil and gas or renewables.
Inspection and maintenance routines can be optimised. Operational data and historical inputs, like inspections and surveys, can be stored securely in the cloud. Those results can be accessed by integrations into various applications, including those using artificial intelligence, for use on future asset planning, drilling, and installation operations.
Using digital tools to achieve this accessible repository of contextual data creates more time for experts to spend on engineering, planning, and analysis which leads to the optimisation of decisions.
The value of digital technologies is well recognised by high-profile FutureOn customers around the world with the results of digitalisation initiatives speaking for themselves.
One global operator has created digital twins of its as-built assets as a starting point for future brownfield expansion projects. Once digital records of brownfield facilities are established they provide the starting point for building future tiebacks and field expansion concepts. Surveying, the extension analysis are simplified and made accessible – lowering risk, saving time and cutting emissions.
An operator developing its portfolio of deep-water projects off Africa used digitalisation, geo-spatial representation and detailed metadata, integrated with their proprietary systems and tools, to create an interactive 3D visualisation of the proposed field and streamlined workflows for its engineers. This operator’s digital twin including bathymetry data, well placements, field layouts and installation details, with costing tools to assess and plan future actions. The result was a maximisation of the impact of the capital deployed and improved speed to first oil.
The data and digital twin model created will be available to optimise operations throughout the lifecycle of the field.
A third global operator deployed digital technology to create production modelling that defines all required input metadata, builds the relevant models, run calculations on demand and exports results for analysis and reference.
The cost of re-work when the engineering and design team use out-dated data poses significant risk to the industry’s leading service companies executing fast track projects. SURF contractors have digitalised workflows for their concept and field development tasks in platforms such as FieldTwin. the result of this investment is that engineers, planners and project leaders now easily visualise all subsea and collaboration. the digital platform ensures all disciplines understand the maturity and quality of the project during the subsea field development stage which minimises mistakes.
The direct consequence is de-risked execution of projects.
Speeding the transition
The benefits of digital can be applied equally to the wider energy transition including renewable energy.
FieldTwin is already in use on flagship floating wind projects around the world. The subsea complexity of floating wind provides a new challenge to the offshore wind industry as each turbine and foundation pair requires its own mooring lines, anchoring and subsea cabling. Whilst conventional workflows focus layout optimisation on the surface domain in isolation, the complexity of the subsea and soil conditions are often a secondary consideration.
FieldTwin brings these key domains into the early design phases, with users mapping their surface layouts in context with the optimisation of the subsea engineering and ground model, reviewing scenarios holistically against dynamic Annual Energy Production and project economic calculators. This enables a unique integrated optimisation workflow for offshore renewables and the digital twin aspect to FieldTwin also means that each scenario or concept can be matured and reviewed as the project evolves and new data are introduced.
FieldTwin’s versatility is unique to the sector and offers developers and project partners a powerful collaboration tool to de-risk pioneering decarbonisation projects such as Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS), hydrogen production and offshore electrification.
Green House Gas (GHG) emissions are an increasingly important driver of portfolio optimisation for energy companies. FieldTwin brings accur geospatial context to any project scenario, which in turn allows for dynamic calculations on project installation, operations and maintenance activity as. a function of distances, time on vessel and equipment specific requirements. These variables offer key optimisation levers on cost but also carry significant impact into the full lifecycle emissions of a project or asset.
The digitalisation and initiation of the digital twin from the initial concept phase creates powerful opportunities for optimisation, reduces expensive iteration and highlights interdependencies across Key Performance Indicators such as emissions, cost and value.
Digital twin technologies offer early visibility, efficiences and optimisation to offshore wind, green hydrogen, and carbon capture and storage as part of diversification strategies.
Digital today, digital tomorrow
The demands of modern energy projects are significant.
Not only must they adhere to emission reduction necessary to meet net-zero timelines, but they must also be responsive to changing market conditions, contribute to security of supply and combine maximum operational efficiencies and growing energy production – all while maintaining the highest standards of human and environmental safety and delivering superior financial returns.
Digital technologies are already contributing to that reality and are evolving at pace to meet the challenges ahead: growing energy demand, supply chain bottlenecks, investment constraints and finite resources.
Offshore is changing: IoT data is integrated in real time to inform engineering and maintenance, various data streams are pulled together in highly functional 3D visualisations. Full AI compatibility, legacy learning and information are incorporated into next-generation solutions.
Companies like FutureOn clearly understand how digital technologies offer the flexibility, the power and the reliability to meet the need for globally dispersed teams to access data, use it productively with whichever tools they desire, share insights seamlessly, and see the options available for their projects. Armed with such capabilities, global energy companies consistently make better, more sustainable business decisions, and do so more rapidly then ever before.
The result is minimised risks and optimised results whether measured in increased production, improved financial returns or lower emissions. And there is a lot more to come.