What if your wells or pipelines could call you up and tell you they were sick before they went down?If you’ve ever gone to the doctor to get some medicine at the first sign of a fever—to try to shorten the illness—you understand what I mean.
Most of the time now, in the oil patch, the first we know of a problem is when the pump breaks down, the compressor slams on the brakes, a valve gives way or there’s some other catastrophic—and expensive—problem.
What if we could use Big Data to start detecting the lead-up to a problem and fix it before it became a shutdown or, in the case of a pipeline, a big leak? It could help our people work smarter by doing small jobs in time to reduce the major ones.Well—we’re not there yet. But I’m going to let you in on a dream of mine—that we will be soon.
We have the steps in place.
The first one is what I call the Last Mile connection. We don’t just collect data and provide monitoring software—we’re out in the field connecting legacy equipment to the industrial internet of things (IIoT)—machines that were made before there was such a thing. We’re doing this so producers like you can see the data collected by your legacy equipment from the comfort of your office with Zedi Access software, or on your phone with Zedi Go. You can also receive alarms telling you when a problem occurs.
But I’m looking forward to the second step: the day we can use that data to predict failures by learning from the past. That’s what the experts call Predictive Analytics. Machines will learn how to detect the onset of problems and tell you before they happen so you can correct them before they are going to cost you serious time and money.
This is the power of Artificial Intelligence.
But the machines can do better: they'll be able to tell you not only that something is about to happen, but also what is going to happen. With that knowledge in your possession, you can not only address the problems before they hit full force, but you can optimize the repair by dispatching a crew who know already what the likely problem is.
We’re on the way.
We’re already using our IIoT gateway for reducing downtime and for tracking production data. That’s already saving producers millions of dollars across their operations. We are also working with some midstream operators to warn them very quickly of potential leaks in their pipelines.
My dream is that we save even more money, increase production even more and make clients even more efficient by predicting these things—helping set more accurate preventive maintenance schedules and more.
This is the future! Are you on board with me? We’re going to go from the first mile, to the last mile, to make the future happen.