IBM Intelligent Oilfield Solution to Boost StatoilHydro's Production

StatoilHydro has signed a long-term agreement for IBM to implement a solution expected to bring significant savings through an intelligent and more efficient process for the management of turnaround projects.

A turnaround or shutdown of an oilfield typically takes between 10,000 and 80,000 man-hours. Up to now, all repairs and shutdowns have been planned based solely on information regarding the maintenance record of equipment and assets. The new IBM and StatoilHydro system for planning and assisting shutdowns will make it easier for StatoilHydro to detect execution problems and take action to reduce the duration and production loss of each shutdown.

With IBM's knowledge management tool, StatoilHydro will be able to manage planned shutdowns up to a year in advance, preventing additional losses and increased expenses. Planning and preparation for a shutdown begins 14 months ahead of scheduled maintenance. StatoilHydro can now evaluate potential areas for improvement well in advance against a standardised set of key performance indicators.

Following several successful pilots, the solution is to be implemented at around 35 offshore installations.

"Much of the production losses on the Norwegian continental shelf come from shutdowns. We believe this intelligent solution developed in partnership with IBM is vital to implementing more effective work processes, will help save costs and substantially boost production," said Tom Anders Thorstensen Project Manager at StatoilHydro.

StatoilHydro R&D together with IBM global industry experts and the IBM Norwegian Centre of Excellence for Oil and Gas in Stavanger, Norway, developed the shutdown solution. Running on IBM WebSphere, the Software Oriented Architecture (SOA) enabled system is based on open standards and may be offered to other industries in the future.

"StatoilHydro has run pilots of the solution which have been successful. The tests confirm significant savings potential in standardising the processes connected to planning and assisting shutdowns. We are looking forward to seeing the results when we implement the solution into our turnaround processes, and expect to see some improvements already with some of the turnarounds scheduled for next year," said Frode Garmanslund, Vice President for Turnaround Management & Planning, StatoilHydro.

"IBM works closely with companies like StatoilHydro, bringing together business processes and technology enabling faster exploration, increased oil recovery and better data sharing," said Kaare Finbak, Project Manager for IBM Norway. "Smart systems like this one have the potential to enhance efficiencies in other industries globally, enabling the extraction of relevant information quickly in order to support crucial decision making."