Wellstorm’s WITSML Service Platform

CEO Hugh Winkler explains why, with a standard like WITSML, data housekeeping is still required to blend disparate data streams—enter the ‘drilling data processing center.’

Wellstorm has announced V 2.0 of its flagship WITSML Service Platform (WSP 2). WSP 2 serves as enterprise repository for drilling information. The new version introduces ‘WSP Apps,’ a drilling data processing system. Oil IT Journal asked Wellstorm’s CEO Hugh Winkler for more.

In drilling operations, companies have a lot of people running specialist applications. Engineers may run Perform Toolkit, the G&G guys run Predict and Geologix, the geosteering folks Geolog. Interoperability across these tools has been helped by the WITSML data exchange standards. But in practice, problems remain when combining live data streams from rigs with historical data from different domains to drive decision support tools.

WITSML has removed some of the ‘friction’ but not all of it. Today, you still see one to one connections, ad hoc workarounds, bailing wire and duct tape. Each application makes assumptions about channel mnemonics, units of measure, the availability of certain computations, sample rates, the meaning of missing data and so on. One service company might deliver torque in amperes—but another application requires Newton-meters—so we need to apply a motor constant before we can calculate mechanical specific energy. Every day, every new project, every new software component introduces new hassles. It’s still a many to many problem which is destroying the value companies expected from their WITSML investment.

Worse still, computations embedded in applications are not widely accessible across the company due to barriers such as licensing schemes and proprietary databases. Often, the best way to make a calculation and share it with others is Excel. But as we all know, if you are emailing screen dumps and Excel files around to show people data or calculations, then IT has failed in its decision support role.

Imagine if seismic processing switched software vendor for every step of the workflow—A for correlation, B for NMO, C’s stacker! And suppose that when you’re through, the results remain in a silo, unusable by other processes!

Going back to drilling, what’s needed is a drilling data processing system that lets applications and data providers work together. Wellstorm’s WSP 2 is such a system. It orchestrates the flow of data across domains with server-side plugins. WSP allows scripting using a rich JavaScript/XML language.

WSP 2 does not replace specialist point applications, it enables them, fills the gaps and lubricates the machine. Plugin processing jobs are used to QC data, cleanse, filter, transform, monitor and send alarms.

WSP 2 exposes the whole WITSML data model for the well, rig or field so that applications can draw upon historical data, offset wells, or on information about the BHA, drillstring and casing. Jobs can run periodically in batch mode or on demand. WSP 2 lets you automate processing workflows so that your downstream apps work correctly.

You can also perform high value, proprietary calculations on the data. For one customer, we have built WSP Apps calculating drilling performance metrics derived from high resolution real time data. For another, we are implementing a custom pore pressure estimation algorithm not available in their existing software tools. These apps directly read, and create new WITSML so you can use current results downstream. More from wellstorm.com.

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