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How Digital Tech Can Save Millions on Turnarounds

Date: 05/27/19 | Author: AMACS Process Tower Internals | Category: Blog, Maintenance, Shutdowns, Turnarounds |

Plant managers and executives should consider utilizing digital technologies for their ability to identify additional profits from existing capacity. Researchers at McKinsey & Company discovered that the effective use of digital technologies in the oil and gas sector alone could decrease capital expenditures by up to 20%. In addition, they reported the tech could reduce operating costs in upstream expenses by three to five percent and by approximately 1.5% to 2.5%, in downstream expenses.

Digital Technoloy in Shutdowns and Turnarounds

A successful turnaround can take several years to schedule and plan. One day or even a few hours of lost time during a shutdown can cost an operation millions of dollars. Worse still, aging infrastructure requires more planned maintenance and can cause outages each year. These items alone make it crucial to plan effectively during all phases of your turnaround.

Installing and utilizing a digital tech platform can automate many turnaround tasks while offering a centralized hub for project intelligence. A few of these benefits include:

  • Increasing the ability to collaborate and comply with your full audit history.
  • Reduction of non-productive time through the elimination of paper tracking.
  • Real-time performance and task completion data for the purpose of meeting forecasts.
  • Optimizing inspections, resource allocation, and scheduling with advanced features.
  • Integration of data and siloed systems such as Oracle Primavera, SAP, Microsoft, and other asset management applications.
  • Mobile accessibility to enable work at any time from at any location.
  • Increased visibility into overall turnaround project status and completed tasks.

A Real Life Example of How Digital Tech Saved Millions

 The Pareto Principle is also known as the 80/20 rule, in which 80% of possible increases in production come from approximately 20% of the wells. ConocoPhillips set out to change this standard with the use of digital technology. They optimized existing analytic tools for their wells and plunger lift systems, integrated data from multiple sources, as well as knowledge from their engineers of tasks that needed to be completed.

Digital technology was implemented in the form of robotic process automation and software workflow automation. The tools are programmed to analyze existing conditions along with data sets, study the engineering team’s process, and build on them by automizing common and hidden commands contained in every major software tool. The digital technology was able to streamline over 40 separate graphs and charts from multiple systems into one single flow that laid out performance from beginning to end. One of the most helpful results of the digital technology was that it found that nothing new needed to be created for workflow integration.

The new digital technology allowed ConocoPhillips to expand production by 30% in the field where it was deployed. Over the next three years using a net price of $40 per barrel, the production increase led to an additional $1 billion in revenue – a fraction of the cost it took to purchase and implement the digital technology.

AMACS is a trusted, global supplier to the petrochemical, refining, chemical, and gas processing industries. Our engineers are leaders in offering industry solutions in the design and manufacture of separation and mass transfer equipment with the ability to advise the correct “replacement in-kind equipment” of hardware, trays, packing, and mist eliminators for towers, regardless of the original manufacturer. The team is available 24/7 to quickly service planned or unplanned shutdowns while speedily manufacturing items from our Houston or Monterrey facility.