North American Oil & Gas Pipelines

FEB 2017

North American Oil & Gas Pipelines covers the news shaping the business of oil and gas pipeline construction and maintenance in North America, including pipeline installation methods, integrity management innovations and managerial strategies.

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Page 34 of 43 FEBRUARY 2017 | North American Oil & Gas Pipelines 35 profiting from favorable market condi- tions while one can. The ability to an- ticipate market changes and then adjust operations accordingly could have a significant impact on profitability. Data analytics combines multiple sources of data, internal and external, to identify patterns or trends. This information can then be used by executives to make busi- ness decisions, such as adjusting daily production output. Collaboration without limits. Today, collaboration and information sharing is more ad-hoc with participants in different locations. Tools now exist that bring together the right people for the job independent of boundaries and help them share resources. Greater col- laboration amid departments, among drilling sites and between employees can lead to faster problem solving or new innovations. Maintain asset readiness. A pri- mary factor in flexible operations is maintaining equipment for use when it's needed. Digital remote monitoring constantly captures and analyzes sensor data from multiple assets across oilfields and along pipelines. Types of data mon- itored could include daily oil produc- tion, pump pressure, conditions of vari- ous pipelines and asset emissions. Once data is collected, it then can be bench- marked against competitors or past per- formance to uncover issues, which al- lows them to be addressed proactively rather than wait for weekly or monthly reports. Predictive maintenance pre- vents problems from occurring so that assets are always available. Transparent transportation logistics. In a complex and heavily-regulated, global business environment, flexibility relies on having an integrated supply chain. Data from sensors embedded in oils barrels or in other transportation assets can help track and trace the loca- tion, condition and authenticity of prod- ucts. Sensors also can help with locating containers and even track moving assets to prevent loss. With connected logisti- cal systems, supply chain partners could also immediately analyze impending routes, pickups and deliveries, then re- route supply to where it's needed most. Maintenance can happen "on- the-go." In today's mobile data world, maintenance can be performed on the spot. As an example, imagine a digital work order is issued for a pump that needs repair. The request is displayed on the tablet of the technician close to the pump's location who also has experience repairing the particular part. While in the field, the technician notices an addi- tional problem, accesses the company's inventory management systems and locates the part. He or she drives to the closest location, picks up the new part and returns to the site. The technician then views a 3D video illustrating the repair process for the problematic piece of equipment and completes the repair. Mobile devices track when the techni- cian arrives, confirms when the work is complete, and send the information directly to the company's HR and bill- ing systems. The digital economy has been fueled by opportunities uncovered when con- necting assets, people, products and processes. For oil and gas companies, the newly found data is helping lower costs and drive efficiencies within their existing operations. But, data is also giv- ing them power to take control of their destiny, rather than let the market dic- tate their success or failure. Some vision- ary companies are using real-time data analysis to add agility into their business processes, allowing workers to make op- erational decisions that align with mar- ket conditions and maximize revenue. In doing so, they are not only surviv- ing the current economic situation, but thriving. Brent Potts is senior director of industrial marketing for oil and gas at SAP, an enterprise application software provider. & Thrive in a Variable Economy

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