Showing posts with label Big Data. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Big Data. Show all posts

Thursday, November 14, 2019

ADIPEC Day IV: Final notes from Abu Dhabi

The Oilholic has just rounded off day four, or the final day of ADIPEC 2019, here in Abu Dhabi concluding nearly a week of engaging industry dialogues.

Under the 'Oil and Gas 4.0' discussion umbrella, talking points ranged from upstream challenges to downstream efficiencies, digitisation to robotics, natural gas to hydrogen-powered mobility, oil demand [or perhaps lack of] to the changing nature of demand itself, and well pretty much all else in between. 

Summing up the last four days, Omar Suwaina Al Suwaidi, ADIPEC Conference Chairman, and Director, Executive Office Directorate at ADNOC, opined: "Through Oil and Gas 4.0, ADIPEC is unlocking the opportunities created by the Fourth Industrial Era. 

"To continue to thrive, it is critical that we better harness our data, utilise big data value-adding technology and innovation, capture digital insights to our business, and understand how all aspects of our operations and activities are interconnected to unlock greater value in the evolving energy landscape."

Amen to that sentiment, and the human resource and ingenuity at the heart of that progressive drive! Speaking of which, the crucial subject of gender diversity was under the microscope today. ADIPEC also received a presidential visit when Egypt's Abdel Fattah El Sisi, who is on an official visit to the UAE, came calling. 

This blogger also took some time out to leave the conference venue and pay a visit to the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company's (ADNOC) Panorama Command Centre at its headquarters (pictured above left) and meet the company's digital team that handles its operation. 


During the site visit, the Oilholic got a glimpse of how ADNOC is deploying advanced analytics and digital solutions to monitor throughput in real-time and learn lessons in order to improve efficiencies across its value chain. 

When we are talking of a company producing 3 million barrels per day of crude oil and 9.8 billion cubic feet of gas per day; that's quite a sizeable operation as the readers would acknowledge. A special thanks to Abdul Nasser Al Mughairbi, SVP of Digital at ADNOC, who spared his time to take The Oilholic around, answer questions and host yours truly to spectacular views from an office floor home to equally spectacular technological solutions. 

Away from the ADNOC HQ, one also got a first-hand feel of a 'drive thru fuel station' launched in UAE by ADNOC Distribution. The fuel service is called 'On The Go', which will allow motorists to purchase fuel products from the comfort of their car.

The service will be "complementary, and at no additional fees" motorists can shop at an ADNOC convenience store while their vehicle is getting filled, receive their shopping items in the vehicle and pay for it using a new Wi-Fi payment method! Now that's convenient. 

And concluding a hectic afternoon of walkabouts, before bidding goodbye to ADIPEC, the Oilholic also visited offshore support vessel QMS Bani Yas, a new jack up barge docked close to the event venue, right in time for sunset. Among other things, it was great to get to the vessel's helipad as well as understand operating procedures of a support ship of its size. 

Alas, that's all from ADIPEC 2019 folks. Its time to say goodbye and head for the flight home. Keep reading, keep it ‘crude’!

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© Gaurav Sharma 2019. Photo I: ADNOC Panorama Command Centre, Abu Dhabi, UAE. Photo II: View of Abu Dhabi, UAE from ADNOC Panorama Command Centre. Photo III: Concept mock-up of ADNOC Distribution's drive thru fuel station 'On The Go' at ADIPEC 2019. Photos III, IV and V: Offshore support vessel QMS Bani Yas docked off ADIPEC 2019 venue, Abu Dhabi, UAE © Gaurav Sharma, November 2019. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

ADIPEC Day III: Oil demand, AI and robots

Day three of ADIPEC 2019 has just concluded here in Abu Dhabi, UAE and much was said about oil demand concerns. Morning discourse was coloured by the International Energy Agency's take that demand is set to plateau by 2030 due to a pick up in the use of electric vehicles around the world.

In its latest market projections, the IEA said overall demand for energy is set to increase by 1% every year until 2040, however headline demand will plateau ten years earlier than it had previously forecast.

Elsewhere in its World Energy Outlook report, the IEA said US shale output, which has made the country the world's biggest oil producer, is likely to stay higher for longer than previously projected, with the country accounting for 85% of the increase in global oil production by 2030, and for 30% of the increase in natural gas.

Meanwhile, switching tack to the coming 12 months, OPEC Secretary General Mohammed Barkindo said an uptick in demand for 2020 may be on the cards should the US-China trade stand-off end.

"We are confident that there will be a deal and the deal will be positive for the world economy and will remove the dark cloud that has engulfed the global economy because of the size of the countries," Barkindo said on the sidelines of ADIPEC.

Among the VIPs in town today was Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Prime Minister and Ruler of neighboring Dubai. Alongside his visit, came that of nearly 900 local school kids to learn more about the industry, its processes, careers and well to marvel – perhaps like the rest of us – at some of the innovative robots and kits on display here.
And then there's the launch of a new branch of local government focused on research and development as well as an artificial intelligence (AI) joint venture inked by the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) to take in.

The new Abu Dhabi Research and Development Authority will be tasked with inventions that tackle Earth's most pressing challenges. Under auspices of the emirate's Department of Education and Knowledge (ADEK), five virtual research institutes will focus on biotechnology, food security, sustainability, artificial intelligence and high-performance computing, and advanced materials. The announcement came in step with ADNOC's agreement at ADIPEC with UAE-based AI company, Group 42, on a joint venture to develop AI products for the energy sector.

In sync with this hot topic, the Oilholic also participated in ADIPEC Middle East Petroleum Club's Leadership dialogue on Human and machine collaboration and the impact this has on current business transformation.

IIoT, big data, augmented reality and virtual reality premised solutions, and the changing nature of the workforce were all under a lively 90-minute discussion with Greg Cross, Co-founder of Soul Machines and AI pioneer (third from left) leading the talk. 

Finally, here is one's analysis for Rigzone on why BP and Shell's low carbon overtures and portfolio tweaking hold both oil majors in good stead despite a dire set of numbers. That's all for the moment folks, more from here on the final day at ADIPEC tomorrow. Keep reading, keep it ‘crude’!

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© Gaurav Sharma 2019. Photo I: Day three of exhibition at ADIPEC 2019. Photo II: Industry robot at Total's stand. Photo III: AI pioneer Greg Cross speaks at ADIPEC Middle East Petroleum Club, Abu Dhabi, November 2019 © Gaurav Sharma 2019. 

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Two tech-heavy 'crude' days at Ignite 2019

The Oilholic has spent the last two days in Oslo, Norway attending energy software firm Cognite's annual Ignite 2019 conference at the City's H3 Arena. 

Founded by entrepreneur John Markus Lervik, this energy software start-up majority-owned by Norwegian investment firm Aker, has been making waves in the oil and gas industry as a provider of advanced data and digitization services. 

The firm's industry solutions and analytics bank on operations and equipment sensors that help boost efficiency, throughput and reduce costs by several multiples – something oil and gas players can easily relate to especially in the current volatile oil price climate and pressure for lower breakevens. 

Within just over three years (and counting) of its founding, Cognite has bagged nearly 30 customers including big names such as OMV, Aker BP and Lundin Petroleum. Ignite 2019 was the company's attempt at showcasing what it can offer and trigger debates and dialogues about process efficiencies and optimisation.

Inevitably, in the age of advanced analytics and artificial intelligence, much of the discourse centred on 'Big Data for 'Big Oil'. The conference was supported by companies such as Cognizant, Google, Framo, Siemens, National Instruments and Aker BP to name a few. Nikolai Astrup, Minister of Digitalization of Norway, started proceedings declaring "data is gold."

The minister went on to note: "If we refine, manage and share data appropriately it will lay the foundation for better and more effective public services, new industry successes and create jobs. 

"The Norwegian government has just launched an ambitious digitalization strategy, making us a pioneer in creating good public services for citizens, businesses and the voluntary sector."

A packed agenda saw several speakers outline the kind of efficiencies their digitisation efforts are bringing about and the results they have yielded. For instance, here is the Oilholic's report for Forbes on how Austria's OMV has managed to lower its production costs from $15 per barrel down to $7 per barrel.

While the job of impressing the sector and bagging clients is well underway, and Cognite's product suite is helping the company to grow profitably, further capital for expansion will be needed. To that end, this blogger sat down with Lervik to discuss his future plans, including those for a possible initial public offering. Here's this blogger's full interview for Forbes in which Lervik also discusses Cognite’s expansion to Asia and North America

Following an evening of networking over some fun music and drinks on day one, day two brought more efficiencies discussions to the fore, not necessarily digressing from the oil and gas industry theme but including renewables and low carbon as vital topics.

As were the subjects of advanced data analytics and cloud computing, with Darryl Willis, VP Oil, Gas & Energy at Google Cloud, telling Ignite 2019 delegates that every industry, including energy, will be grappling with data as the new common denominator. "Data science to real time monitoring aided by cloud computing and data analytics would only be to the industry advantage."

Plenty more articles coming up from the deliberations for Forbes, Rigzone and Energy Post over the next few weeks, but that's all from Ignite 2019 on that note. After a few more meetings in Oslo, it'll be time for the big bus home. Keep reading, keep it 'crude'!

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© Gaurav Sharma 2019. Photo 1: Oslofjord Ferry Pier, Oslo, Norway. Photo 2: Nikolai Astrup, Minister of Digitalization of Norway speaks at Ignite 2019 at the H3 Arena in Oslo, Norway. Photos 3&4: Glimpses of networking floor at Ignite 2019 © Gaurav Sharma, June 2019.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Thoughts From Baker McKenzie’s Oil & Gas Institute 2018

Earlier today, the Oilholic was delighted to attend the Baker McKenzie 2018 Oil & Gas Institute; an event that grows bigger by the year, and has become a true 'crude' fixture in Houston.

From Big Oil getting to grips with Big Data to capital raisings in mature jurisdictions, emerging market legal considerations to mergers and acquisitions - there was plenty on the agenda to for everyone. Of course lurking in the background to it all is the direction of the oil price and US President Donald Trump's re-imposition of sanctions on Iran, the Israeli-Iranian tussle in Syria, OPEC and all the rest. It's pushed Brent crude above $77 per barrel and WTI above $71. 

While every US shale player would gladly accept the current prices; quite like the Oilholic, few at the Institute felt the elevated prices would last. Given there are several variables in the equation - including, but not limited to, what OPEC would do next month, what sort of levels US producers are likely to record, how many Iranian barrels are likely to be knocked off the market, etc. - getting carried away by the bulls would not be a good idea. 

To quote, Jim O'Brien, Chair of Baker McKenzie's Global Energy, Mining & Infrastructure Practice Group and one of the architects of the Institute, the US oil patch is "feeling good" about itself at the moment, but at the same time there is a fair degree of realism that a return to $100 prices is unlikely.

In fact, one of the key takeaways from the Institute was how oil and gas players, both large and small, were aiming to achieve breakeven at prices as low as $30. 

Underpinning that drive would be digitisation across the board enabled by big data, AI, automation and robotics coming together to bring about the kind of process efficiencies capable of making a tangible difference to the operating expenditure of oil and gas companies. Touching on this very subject was a keynote speech by Paulo Ruiz Sternadt, boss of Siemens-owned Dresser-Rand. (Full Forbes report here)

Representatives of Baker McKenzie, BP, Accenture, Shell and many others also touched on the topic. LNG, employment diversity and private equity in the business were other subjects under discussion, as was the topic of investing in Mexico (Forbes post here) and the latest developments in Saudi Arabia. All in all, another interesting afternoon of deliberations. But that's all for the moment from Houston folks. Keep reading, keep it 'crude'!

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© Gaurav Sharma 2018. Photo: Delegates at the Baker McKenzie 2018 Oil & Gas Institute in Houston, Texas, USA © Gaurav Sharma 10 May, 2018.

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For comments or for professional queries, please email: gaurav.sharma@oilholicssynonymous.com

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