Volume 22 Number 4


Shale gains 'overstated'

MIT finds 'flawed logic' in US EIA shale forecasts that 'significantly overestimate' the impact of technology over sweet-spot based drilling. Current forecasts reflect 'unrealistic' expectations.

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KognifAI

Kongsberg's artificial intelligence platform to optimize data access and re-use across drilling and production.

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Oil and gas a digital laggard? Big data disruption? ... maybe

Neil McNaughton reports on recent developments in the big-data-internet-of-things-advanced-analytics space. Is oil and gas a technology laggard? Is the digital grass greener on the other side of the fence? Will disruptive technology like the WebIsADatabase replace the knowledge worker? He also gets political with some AI-related news hot-in from the French election.

An apology to our upstream subscriber base. But as focus shifts from exploration to production, and as what exploration that is being done (onshore US) seems to be making do with less G&G, there is less information coming our way ‘E’ end of the E&P spectrum.

Elsewhere the information vacuum is filled with contributions from what can loosely be described as the big-data-internet-of-things-advanced-analytics brigade. Some of which is interesting, but all of which is getting a bit tired. Too much razzmatazz, not enough meat. No proof of the pudding. No killer app to replace the knowledge workers that we all are which I suppose is just as well!

We do of course continue to report dutifully on the outpourings of the big data etc. movement in the hope and expectation that eventually, something of interest will turn up. But so far, we, like others, are pushed into the uncomfortable position of ‘reporting’ on stuff that has not yet happened. All those jobs that will be lost to AI at some time in the future? All that ‘digitization’ stuff you thought you’d already done. Well seems like you haven’t even started! 

On which topic, we hear from the consulting community that oil and gas is a technology laggard. A report from EY recently popped into my inbox where I read that ‘The digital revolution disrupting so many industries has been slow to make its presence felt in the oil and gas sector. [ … ] The energy industry has traditionally lagged behind other sectors when it comes to adopting technology for above ground uses. [ … ] But the dramatic changes digital is bringing to the modern enterprise can’t be ignored forever, and oil and gas executives are beginning to recognize the promise and challenge of adopting a digital strategy.’

Strong stuff indeed. But what exactly is all this stuff going on in all those other ‘disrupted’ industries? It so happens that I also recently chanced on an opinion piece in Nature by one Andrew Kusiak who, as professor of industrial engineering at the University of Iowa, ought to know. Kusiak has it that ‘… big data is a long way from transforming manufacturing. Leading industries - computing, energy and aircraft and semiconductor manufacturing - face data gaps. Most companies do not know what to do with the data they have, let alone how to interpret them to improve their processes and products. Businesses compete and usually operate in isolation. They lack software and modelling systems to analyze data.’ So much for the grass being greener on the other side of the fence!

Another popular argument doing the rounds has it that oil and gas has piles of data just hanging around doing nothing. The implication being that, if you not doing stuff with all your data all the time, then you should be replaced by a robot that can! I’m not sure exactly what is amiss with this notion, but I suggest that it is a bit like asking why you are not doing something right now about all the air that surrounds you un-breathed. Not perhaps a perfect analogy but you get my drift.

I may have misunderstood the import of another announcement, the first release of the WebIsADatabase (Wiadb) a linked, open database from the Data and web science group at the University of Mannheim. The dataset contains nearly 12 million ‘hypernym’ relations collected from the web. Hypernyms, aka ‘is a’ relationships, tell you stuff like ‘red is a color’ or ‘iPhone 4 is a smartphone.’ The researchers provide their scraped data along with confidence scores, ‘rich’ provenance information and interlinks to other ‘LOD’ (linked open data) sources like DBpedia and Yago. The whole dataset of over 470 million RDF triples is provided as linked data, Sparql endpoints or as downloadable dumps.

Is it possible to consider the whole of the web as a reliable information source? If you believe in the ‘wisdom of crowds’ then maybe. Personally I am skeptical. I wrote about the usefulness of the web as a source of information in my March 2008 editorial ‘Heat pumps, phlogiston and the world wide web.’ I concluded then that ‘on the web you are more likely to find bull from enthusiastic amateurs than gospel from the experts. There is a distinct weighting of the knowledge scales in favor of the unqualified hordes.’ 

In a way, the bigness of the dataset means that ‘knowledge’ eventually becomes a matter of opinion. The web is more of a massive voting machine than a repository of knowledge and is easily biased by misconceptions or gamed by the unscrupulous.

Speaking of voting, as you probably know I live in France where there have been some interesting happenings on the political front of late. In the run-in to the elections there was some angst among the chattering classes in that a hitherto unknown (over here at least) Canadian polling institute (I will refrain from mentioning its name on the ‘do not feed the trolls’ principle). These folks seemingly used big social media data to correctly predict the result of the US presidential elections last year.

In the run in to the French presidential elections, the same polling concern, using the same techniques, predicted a win for the National Front. This of course flew in the face of all the old-fashioned local pollsters. But what would they know with their ‘legacy’ technology of small samples of ‘representative’ individuals. The Canadian outfit was out ‘disrupting,’ scraping masses of information from the buzzing social media. Big data, advanced analytics, how could they go wrong?

@neilmcn


Oil IT Journal interview, Andreas Jagtøyen, Kongsberg

Following the release of KognifAI, Kongsberg's new artificial intelligence cross-industry software platform, Andreas Jagtøyen who heads up Kongsberg's Marine/Energy division explains how the offering is consolidating Kongsberg's prior IT art. He also opines on the role of the data lake, the internet of things and on the risk to industry of multiple vendor-specific 'platforms.'

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SeismicZone 'microsites' to host sellers' seismics

Katalyst's seismic data marketplace now offers branded showcases for third party data.

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Palantir and PetroVR/Caesar Systems combine

PetroVR and PlanningSpace planning support platforms to merge.

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Exprodat's free online GIS benchmark

Industry at large scores meagre 2.6 out of 5 on geographic best practices self-test.

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Fred Simkin comments on AI in Oil and Gas

SmartFix president thinks editor Neil McNaughton missed a trick in 2016 editorial.

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Software, hardware short takes ...

Akai on Vaizr. Battelle PipeAssess. Blue Marble seismic calculator. PDS AVA Clastics. IHS EWB 2.0. Industrial Skyworks' Blue VU. INT Viewer 5.2. Kappa Workstation 5.12. Roxar Tempest 8.0. Schlumberger Lift IQ. Seeq R17 for Devon. Terrasciences' TLAS LAS reader for Android.

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Rice Oil & Gas High Performance Computing 2017

ExSeisPiol - parallel I/O for extreme workloads. Devito - SciPy for seismics 'because not everyone is a polymath.' Nvidia's Occa cross platform API. BP on 'disruptive' OpenSFS.' Argos frac simulator.

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Capital Facilities Information Handover Standard

USPI-backed standards group face-to-face meet chez BP. Shell on handover and mounting tag counts. Chevron on 'over ambitious' prior art. Total's Quantum digital twin. AmecFW's information hub. Yokogawa on IOGP standards. USPI on ISO accreditation. Shell on broadening CFIHOS' scope.

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ALRDC Gas Well Deliquification Workshop

Theta Oilfield Services on the 'pendulum' of AI in artificial lift. Encline on what the Internet of Things offers the oilfield. Colorado School of Mines creates production test labs.

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Folks, facts, orgs ...

ABB, Aqualis, Bahwan CT, Barco, Ceiba, CH2M, BRWWO, Circor, Devon, Entero, Foster, GE, Inpex, KBR, Kleinfelder, Kongsberg Digital, Michael Baker, Maana, MacGregor, Implico, PIDX, Ansys, C-Core, OGC, Oseberg, Precision, QS Energy, SAP, Subsurface Consultants & Associates, Shell, Schlumberger, Spectris, TRC, Ziyen, Alberta TSB, Warren Business Consulting, Assai, USPI.

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Done deals

Aker, Atos, Badger, Concentric, Divestco, Emerson, Esia, Westwood, Erza, NOV, ESG, Trican, PDI.

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IBM/Stone Ridge 'bests' Exxon reservoir simulation record

Performance milestone claimed for IBM Power System with Nvidia Telsa P100 accelerators.

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Zenotech, Epistemy, RFDyn team on cloud-based flow simulation

'Masters of uncertainty' leverage 'elastic private interactive cloud.'

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Emerson DLO embeds PI. New Roxar subsea wet gas meter

Dynamic lift optimizer at Cera Week big data tech 'agora.' Microwave resonance salinity meter.

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Connecting 'dark assets' to IBM Watson

Prismtech/Intel team on edge computing solution.

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Sales, deployments, partnerships ...

Opto 22, IBM, Geospatial, Google, TomTom Telematics, T-Systems, Ampelius, Phusion, Aptomar, Saudi Aramco, ADNOC, McDermott, Dassault Systèmes, Elite Control Systems, Exova, FairfieldNodal, Ikon Science, Vepica, Intergraph, Lloyd's Register, Gosco, Software AG, OSIsoft, PDS, RPSEA, SEAM, SAP, Google, Siemens, Schlumberger, Weatherford, Terrabotix, Geological Remote Sensing Group, Trendsetter Engineering, Add Energy, Yokogawa, USPI.

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Standards stuff special - the birth of a protocol

Well test software consultant Laurence Ormerod tells Oil IT Journal how PTAML (pressure transient analysis and data transfer standard) originated and ultimately fused with Energistics' ProdML.

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WIB, the Dutch process automation users' association, seminar

LeiKon on context-based online data management in process industries. ISPT on energy optimization with Shell's GMOS network simulator. More on ExxonMobil's new process control standard.

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ITVizion addresses nightmare of cross-system synchronization

Blogger Alex Ivasu on IT Vizion's 'generic, self-sustaining' PI AF meta-model.

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LR deploys Axxim risk profiler on Angolan Olombendo FPSO

Bumi Armada Berhad's floater gets corrosion baseline inspection for reliability centered maintenance.

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SkyX launches pipeline drone

Visual, infra-red and multispectral VTOL sensor platform operates at 150kph for 70 minutes.

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DNV GL studies wind-powered offshore water injection

WinWin project moves from drawing board to lab test of physical demonstrator.

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GE 'digitalizes' Noble rig fleet. Meridium, ServiceMax on Predix

Partners announce 'Digital Rig' powered by Predix. Asset management meets field service software.

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Intelligent Plant's Industrial App Store

Astrimar, IDS, Leidos, Siemens and Wood Group tools join IP's 'Gestalt Alarm Analysis'

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