Statoil to open two new tech centers to improve operations

Norway’s Prime minister Erna Solberg took part in remote operations with Håvard Christian Leirvåg in the control room on the Gina Krog platform. (Photo: Statoil/Christian Djupvik Brandt-Hansen)

Statoil’s new integrated operations support center and a drilling operations center are set to increase the company’s value creation from operated fields in Norway.

Statoil said on Wednesday that the increased value creation would be more than $2 billion from 2020 to 2025, before tax.

The centers will be established in Bergen and connected stepwise to all Statoil installations on the Norwegian continental shelf, starting this year.

Statoil’s chief operating officer Jannicke Nilsson said: “The possibilities provided by digitalization will change our industry and the way we work, and create higher value for us and society. The centers are good examples of how we keep applying digital technology to work smarter, safer and more efficiently.”

Up to 2020, Statoil plans to invest in the range of NOK 1-2 billion ($128-256 million) in digital technology aiming to create higher value and improve operations.

The two new centers will help improve production efficiency and production potential on the NCS. In December, Statoil also opened an operations support center in the USA, that is currently monitoring the company’s over 1,100 onshore wells.

“In new field developments, oil and gas production will to an increasing extent be carried out from unmanned, robotized, standardized, and remote-controlled installations. We will be able to control the maintenance work in a better way and improve safety and operational quality,” Nilsson added.

Statoil said that the IOC would build on existing condition monitoring and specialist centers in Norway as well as strengthen interaction between offshore and onshore.

Statoil’s head of operations technology on the NCS, Kjetil Hove, said: “[…] the center will make improvements for operation and maintenance work on the platforms. Our main goal is to operate our installations safely and optimally every single day, and to identify challenges and prevent shut-down before they occur.”

The integrated operations support center is scheduled to open after the summer season, and gradually support all Statoil-operated fields and installations on the NCS. The first fields to be connected are Gina Krog and Grane in the North Sea as well as Åsgard in the Norwegian Sea.

The other center to be established will offer more cost-effective and better geoscience support of drilling operations, as monitoring and control of offshore well path drilling will be moved from offshore installations to a joint geoscience operations center.

This center will be ready to support its first operations already this autumn.