4 Ways Technology Can Improve Oilfield Security

Technology has dramatically revolutionized oilfield work processes. In the ever-changing and uncertain oil markets, digital technologies have made vast improvements to different oilfield monitoring equipment to deliver optimal results. However, before these technologies can run efficiently, oil and gas companies must have adequately configured networks and setups.       

Location tanks to hold crude oil as it is pumped and treated to remove water.

A 2017 Oil and Gas Digital Trends Survey revealed that 73% of oil and gas companies believe that oil and gas field will be fully automated and digitized in the next three to five years. The survey also showed that faster and better decision making (30 percent) is the top benefit expected from oil and gas digital technologies, speedier time to produce oil and gas (19 percent) went up to second place from fifth in 2016, and risk reduction enabled real-time decision making support (12 percent) was the third most important.    

Safety and Security at the Forefront

Aside from improving oilfield productivity and efficiency, oil companies aim to make safety and security at the forefront of their operations; this entails careful capacity planning and better worker safety.

Additionally, the energy sector has been concerned with oilfield theft for quite some time now. Because of the remote locations of work sites, they are an easy target of property crimes. An estimated 1 billion dollars to date have been reported lost due to oilfield theft. Unfortunately, this figure doesn’t include unreported theft incidents. Although the crime is widespread and longstanding, the energy sector is consistently finding ways to combat it.

In today’s post, let’s take a look at helpful technologies that you can utilize for your oilfield monitoring equipment and increase security.

1. Remote Surveillance

Remote surveillance is more than just closed-circuit cameras. Today’s technology has paved the way for HD-live feeds of remote sites with additional features such as motion detection and night vision. These new capabilities don’t completely replace the need for on-site security; however, they can vastly expand the security personnel’s ability to perform their tasks. Remote surveillance can also let you access their live feeds from mobile devices as well as store and archive data

2. Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) via the Cloud

Transmitting data through data acquisition models requires large infrastructures. Radio towers usually shoulder this feat. Cloud technology developments offer a solution to this option; you can handle all sensitive data through an encrypted cloud service, which only requires an internet connection on site. Security monitoring companies usually offer SCADA as a turnkey service where they install the oilfield monitoring equipment and grant you access to the servers. The easy and straightforward process is much more ideal for smaller operations, which are usually crippled by significant expenditures of traditional SCADA models.

3. Gate Control

Before, gate control needed a more general approach. Either you needed an analog padlock, which was only as preventive as its keys were uncommon, or you needed a general automatic access system with a passcode. Nowadays, streaming technology has enabled security gate guards to monitor the gate from any remote location. They can also grant access to the work site. This case-by-case gate control capability accurately limits the number of unnoticed entities passing through the job site.

4. Leak Prevention and Monitoring

Oilfield security goes beyond shrink prevention; it also entails liability due to incidence. The occasional spikes in flow through pipes and gas lines and leaks often occur. When left untreated, it can spiral out of hand and may lead to fugitive emissions. Thus, it is recommended to install advanced gas monitoring systems to prevent and respond to leak incidents that are beyond the control of traditional monitoring methods; battery-powered monitoring modules and infrared monitoring systems are the answers.

Monitoring storage leaks is an important option when it comes to reducing shrink in today’s oil climate, and storage is the essential step of the process. It’s the final link before the field can get the results for the efforts they’ve exerted. With the ever-present threat of oilfield theft negatively impacting profits, storage container leaks are an unneeded and easily avoided risk – all with the aid of leak monitoring. Seek a remote monitoring system that can be equipped with solar panels to enable a reliable and low-maintenance leak monitoring feature and minimize shrink by loss.

Utmost Importance

Safety and security on the job site are of the utmost importance to prevent shrinkage and liability. New and improved technologies provide a multitude of ways to battle these issues by granting more control in the hands of security personnel and operators. They can use their discretion to detect problems and utilize oilfield monitoring equipment to prevent these problems from developing.