Within the oil and gas industry, significant costs are often incurred by the operating company during the well-construction phase of drilling operations. Specifically, the operators cost to drill a well can cost tens or hundreds of millions of USD. One specific area where significant changes in drilling operations have occurred is in the offshore environment, specifically operations from mobile offshore drilling units (MODUs). With the ever-increasing demand for oil and gas, operators globally have increased drilling budgets in an effort to meet forecasted demand. However, the increased budgets are often eroded or offset by increasing drilling costs. Therefore, operators are continually in search of new technology, processes, or procedures to help improve drilling operations and overall operational efficiencies.
One Latin America operator identified a common operation as a possible area where operational cost could be easily reduced through the implementation of systems that allow the manipulation of valve manifolds remotely. Additionally, operating such valve manifolds remotely enhanced operational safety for personnel, which was an equally important consideration.
This paper details the evaluation of existing equipment and procedures and a process used to develop a new remote-control system using a machine logic control (MLC) that has been designed, built, tested, and deployed successfully on MODUs operating in Latin America.Copyright © 2014 by ASME