BP, GE launch offshore big-data system starting with Atlantis in gulf

BP PLC and GE have announced the startup of Plant Operations Advisor (POA), a big-data digital system designed to improve the efficiency, reliability, and safety of BP’s oil and gas production operations offshore. The pilot started with Atlantis oil and natural gas field in the Gulf of Mexico.

The POA system is expected to be deployed next year to other BP offshore platforms around the world, said Matthias Heilmann, GE Oil & Gas chief digital officer. The tool was created as part of a development partnership that BP and GE announced in January.

After fine-tuning algorithms, Heilmann said BP anticipates deploying POA to one platform each month until all of its platforms adopt the technology.

During a telephone interview with OGJ, Heilmann said it’s possible the digital technology concept could be expanded to include onshore drilling and production sites as well as downstream equipment if clients wanted to do that.

BP operates Atlantis field in the deepwater gulf, in 4,400-7,100 ft of water 130 miles offshore Louisiana (OGJ Online, Dec. 20, 2007). Atlantis was developed using a semisubmersible. The field comprises five blocks: Green Canyon 699, 700, 742, 743, and 744.

Lorenzo Simonelli, GE Oil & Gas president and chief executive officer, said GE and BP have taken “a big step forward together during this time of digital transformation…to drive the kind of productivity improvements that the oil and gas industry needs.”

POA will help prevent unplanned downtime and improve platform reliability by helping process engineering teams respond quickly to analytical reports. GE made the announcement during its Minds + Machines event in San Francisco.

Ahmed Hashmi, BP’s head of upstream technology, said, “When fully deployed, these advanced digital technologies will change the way we work and improve the integrity and performance of our assets around the globe.”

The system provides simplified access to various real-time data feeds and includes visualization capabilities. It also includes case-management capability to support learning from previous operational issues.

GE said its technology combines big data, cloud hosting, and analytics on both individual pieces of equipment and entire production systems. Heilmann said BP is the only client that is discussing POA so far but that GE is talking with other clients about similar technology in Russia, China, and the Middle East.

Contact Paula Dittrick at paulad@ogjonline.com.

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