BP, BHGE and Predix .. or is it?

Advanced analytics solution, developed with BHGE, will be installed on BP’s upstream assets around the world.

Following trial deployment in 2015 [BP’s production data infrastructure from bespoke to COTS (N° 7 2015)], BP has extended deployment of what is presented in the release as (but see below) GE’s Predix internet of things platform in an extension of its Plant Operations Advisor (POA). POA is described as a ‘cloud-based advanced analytics solution’ developed with BHGE that is now in operation on BP’s Atlantis, Thunder Horse, Na Kika and Mad Dog platforms. The solution is scheduled for deployment on some 30 other BP upstream assets worldwide. POA captures 155 million data points per day from 1,200 pieces of equipment, providing insights on performance and maintenance.

BP’s global head of upstream technology Ahmed Hashmi, said, ‘POA, co-developed with BHGE, is a key plank of modernizing and transforming our upstream operations. We expect the technology to deliver improvements in safety, reliability and performance of our assets and help raise the bar for the entire industry.’

POA is said to be built on GE’s Predix platform, an ambitious cloud-based industrial internet whose evolution Oil IT Journal has followed closely since 2013. Originally presented as a joint venture between Accenture and GE, leveraging its own data centers along with Amazon’s analytics, Predix was developed atop Pivotal’s Cloud Foundry. Earlier this year, Predix was announced as to be standardized on Microsoft Azure in what GE CEO John Flannery described as part of a ‘major change’ in how the company is run, abandoning plans for its own cloud. More recently, the Wall Street Journal reported that GE is planning to seek a buyer for parts of its digital unit, ‘unwinding a signature initiative of former CEO Jeff Immelt that loses money despite billions in investment.’

In a short email exchange, we asked BHGE for clarification on the nature of “Predix” in the BP deployment. A BHGE spokesperson kindly provided the following which we have edited...

“Predix is a platform created by GE Digital. BHGE Digital leverages this platform for some customers. BP’s POA was developed in partnership with BHGE as ‘fit for purpose software’.[ … ]We develop and deliver software that can be deployed on both the Predix platform and in other cloud environments, like Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure, and Amazon AWS. This multicloud approach allows us to be flexible with our customers and help them maximize recovery, optimize production, reduce nonproduct time, and improve operational efficiency. [ … ] We deliver capabilities in asset health, reliability, strategy, integrity, as well as corrosion and process management. For our Fit for Purpose offering, the BP POA deployment is a great example of bringing our advanced analytics expertise together with a customer to meet specific needs. Underlying everything we do is advanced analytics and AI capabilities and the flexibility and domain expertise to work with our customers for improved operational outcomes.”

Reading behind the lines, Oil IT Journal therefore concludes that the BP POA does not run on the GE Digital Predix platform as previously presented by GE O&G, i.e. the Pivotal/Cloud Foundry-based ecosystem.

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