International Digital Oilfield Conference 2011, Abu Dhabi

ADCO, PDO, Emerson, RasGas, Siemens and Saudi Aramco share digital oilfield tales from the front.

Speaking at the second International Digital Oilfield Conference in Abu Dhabi last month, Bahir Al-Azawi described Adco’s ‘Smart Fields’ (SF) initiative. The SF enables multi disciplinary monitoring and control of production and injection in near real time. The SF includes an asset-level collaborative work environment (CWE) and corporate-level real time production and drilling centers RTOC. Each CWE includes an integrated asset model and embeds Halliburton’s AssetObserver dashboard.

PDO’s Fahud field collaboration center (FFCC) was presentated by Salim Al Busaidi. The FCC handles 500,000 real time data points per minute. The venerable Fahud field has been producing for 44 years. PDO is now enhancing data management of its 500 well with Halliburton’s Engineering Data Model. PDO’s ‘Nibras’ portal ‘brings all production data together in single version of the truth.’ Nibras was the subject of a second PDO presentation by Salim Al Busaidi. The Nibras client is a SharePoint/Silverlight development with data services supplied by .NET/Windows Communications Foundation. Under the Nibras hood, data is stored in OSIsoft’s PI System alongside vertical application and databases from Halliburton (EDM) and Schlumberger (OFM). PDO is now working on well performance monitoring and optimization.

Emerson’s Dale Perry advocates a move from ‘simple’ Hart protocol to Foundation Fieldbus (FF) intelligent devices, using Emerson’s ‘human centered design’ (HCD) GUI. Perry contrasted HCD with ‘technology-driven’ design which shows functionality and leaves it up to the user to perform a task. HCD is ‘task driven’ and builds intelligence into the UI.

Ahmad Al Kuwari introduced RasGas’ real time information system (RTIS). RTIS combines around 250 million pages of reports with real time data ‘harvested’ from multiple sources into a central database. 2,000 staff hours per year have been saved through process automation. The system includes data from RasGas’ laboratory information manage system (LIMS) for fluid surveillance and sampling.

Both ADCO and PDO presented their digital oilfield communications infrastructures. ADCO uses a combination of SDH fiber network of various capacity (STM-1 to STM-16) with local Ethernet LAN connected to the SDH nodes. PDO was forced to upgrade its wireless infrastructure and has now opted for WiMAX 802.16d for the last mile.

Ahsan Yousufzai described how Siemens’ work with Saudi Aramco began with the deployment of its ‘XHQ’ as the basis of Aramco’s Enterprise Monitoring Solution (EMS). EMS runs Aramco’s refineries, pipelines and export terminals—all controlled from the ‘Ospas’ centralized facility. Siemens was awarded the i-Field contract following technology assessment pilots with different vendors. A ‘generic i-Filed visualization’ (GIVis) template is customized to each location. The ‘data driven’ solution means that wells are immediately visible as they come on stream. Data is consolidated at a central Historian and the system is linked with Aramco’s wells database. Siemens XHQ now monitors the complete Aramco value chain from wells to export terminals. Aramco is now working to integrate with SAP modules for MRO, finance, HR and on a link to subsurface applications. More on IDOC from

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