4 Benefits of Touchless™ Monitoring Solutions for the Oil & Gas Industry

The oil & gas industry has long used cameras for security and safety applications. In case of an incident, teams could review the video footage and see what happened. But they had limited capabilities to actually prevent an issue from occurring in the first place.

Today, Touchless™ Monitoring solutions allow data from thermal and visual sensors to be used proactively, not just reactively. The explosion-proof sensors provide 24/7 continuous monitoring of upstream, midstream, or downstream facilities for a wide range of applications.

The Benefits of Touchless™  Monitoring for Oil & Gas Applications

Better Maintenance Planning

Oil & gas facilities are typically large, complex, and challenging environments. They are regularly exposed to extreme weather, flammable gas, corrosive materials, and other harsh conditions that lead to equipment degradation.

A typical site contains countless components, high-value assets, and critical equipment, each with its own unique maintenance requirements. This makes maintenance planning and scheduling a time-consuming and costly process, and one that’s not guaranteed to keep equipment up and running effectively.

Touchless™  Monitoring solutions reduce the need for scheduled maintenance and periodic inspections by providing a continuous view of remote facilities. With real-time data, the Operations & Maintenance teams can prioritize maintenance based on the actual condition of the asset, simplifying the maintenance process and reducing the burden on scarce technical resources.

Early Detection for Reduced Downtime

Physical inspections will always have a role to play in managing and maintaining equipment. But unlike inspections, failures don’t happen on a fixed schedule. Faults that occur in between inspections may go undetected, while other issues may simply be missed due to human error or the limitations of testing equipment.

Given the presence of flammable gas, these unresolved faults can quickly grow into catastrophic failures that result in shutdowns, equipment damage, and injuries to workers.

Touchless™  Monitoring solutions, on the other hand, automatically detect potential faults and immediately alert the Operations & Maintenance team. With early detection, the team can diagnose the root cause and prioritize a repair, mitigating the risk of an unplanned failure and downtime.

Reduced Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Lost Revenue

Oil, and especially natural gas, emit far fewer greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than coal or other fossil fuels when used for energy production. But much of the industry’s emissions come from indirect sources such as leaks.

A recent IEA report found that total indirect GHG emissions amounted to 15 percent of the total energy sector emissions, with most of this made up of methane, a highly potent GHG.

This is both costly to the environment and to the bottom line. Leakage represents lost revenue, as well as the potential for regulatory fines and penalties.

Touchless™  Monitoring solutions leverage specialized optical gas imaging (OGI) cameras to detect, localize, and quantify leaks as soon as they occur.

Compared to other leak detection methods such as sniffers, acoustic cameras, or pressure sensors, Touchless™  Monitoring solutions offer wider coverage, easier installation, and fewer false positives.

Improved Worker Safety

Worker safety is always the number one priority. But operating within a refinery or offshore oil rig is always going to come with some level of risk.

Touchless™  Monitoring solutions can mitigate this risk in numerous ways. First, by reducing the need for physical inspections, workers can spend less time in hazardous area conditions. Instead of searching for faults, for example, technicians can arrive on site ready to repair a known issue that was detected and diagnosed using the sensors.

Second, Touchless™  Monitoring solutions immediately alert teams to equipment failure or the presence of spills or flammable gas. These alerts reduce the chance of accidents and explosions that could cause serious injury or death.

Finally, visual cameras can be used by safety teams to verify safety procedures, monitor hazardous zones or areas of interest, or identify intruders or other security threats.

From Reactive to Proactive - Improving Operations With Touchless™  Monitoring

Whether upstream, midstream, or downstream, oil & gas facilities each have complex equipment with specific and unique maintenance requirements. Failure to keep equipment in proper condition can result in a loss of productivity, catastrophic failure, health and safety risks, and lost revenue.

Touchless™  Monitoring solutions make it possible to monitor remote facilities at a distance. With early detection, oil & gas companies can take a proactive approach rather than reacting once an issue has already occurred.