A junior oil and gas company working in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico needed a better way to manage its wide-spread array of wellheads, gas plants, pumps, compressor stations and other equipment.
Verus worked with the company on a solution involving central control of data through a Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) solution, a computer system for gathering and analyzing real time data. This system is intended to monitor equipment performance and to provide some control as well. Verus’ role was to design the SCADA system and connect it, primarily through wireless solutions, to the monitoring and remote-control equipment that the client had installed.
Benefits of the monitoring system include: Real-time data allows for quick action to be taken: One of the key priorities was to provide a way operations personnel could keep watch over performance of the entire network of assets, partly to determine if equipment is operating as expected. For example, operators can determine if a pump is running, at what rate, and if there are any alarms, errors or problems. This way, they can quickly be alerted to potential problems ad understand what is going on with their gathering system. They then know where they need to apply resources if something is not working right. Centralized data helps understand the big picture: Information gathered into the SCADA system allows managers to see trends in the historical data and set priorities for longer-term investment and planning. Employee utilization and safety: The equipment being monitored can be well over an hour, in hilly and rough terrain, away from central operations. Being able to operate remotely saves time driving, increases the proportion of time employees spend on actual problem-solving, and increases employee safety due to being able to work centrally rather than out in the field. Designed with field conditions in mind: The hilly terrain, long distances and spotty cellular reception can play havoc with remote data collection, so the system was designed to deal with field realities to provide reliable, continuous data transmission. Allowing for rapid company growth: One of the client’s priorities was to be able to easily add new equipment to the network, not being held back by any constraints in the information system. We designed the SCADA system with room to grow. Technology that meets the client’s specific needs: The client needed to provide accurate, verifiable information on the flow of sellable product to its customers, to meet the buyer-seller agreements. This included mesa-historic data collection – in which information on the flow of liquids and gases is stored on-site in a secure and encrypted form to demonstrate to customers that they have received the product they have paid for.