AI in Oil and Gas
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Here’s How Artificial Intelligence is Revolutionizing the Oil and Gas Industry

By, digitalfractal
  • 17 Aug, 2020
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The adoption of AI in oil and gas is nothing new. Organizations in the oil and gas industry have already realized the true potential of AI. Hence, it comes as no surprise that 92% of oil and gas companies are either currently investing in AI or plan to do so in the next two years. Artificial intelligence is transforming operations across the entire value chain, right from exploration to sales. Not only is it helping overcome major challenges faced by the industry, but also is proving useful in further refining the current operations. Here’s a look at how artificial intelligence is revolutionizing the oil and gas industry:

Reduce Exploration Costs and Time

Finding profitable oil reserves is an arduous task. To get a complete understanding of where these oil reserves lie, hydrocarbon exploration is a vital process. However, the traditional methods used for exploration are costly and highly inefficient.

AI can significantly help in simplifying the tasks involved in oil reserve exploration. Autonomous robots with artificial intelligence capabilities can help divers and geological analysts in the oil exploration process. They can be used to collect seismic data, and the AI algorithm can analyze the data to extract geological information. Organizations can make better-informed decisions with the data collected with the help of AI. The process of exploration with AI is also significantly faster and highly accurate than traditional methods. Naturally, oil and gas companies can expect reduced time and costs when using AI in the exploration process. The use of  AI in oil and gas can also help minimize the human risks associated with the exploration process.

Simplify Drilling Procedures

Drilling is a major operation in the oil and gas industry. Drilling equipment has to be assembled in a manner that they dig into precise locations to obtain crude oil. However, the process of drilling can become complicated. There are risks of accidents, spills, and worker safety in the drilling process. To simplify the drilling process, artificial intelligence can help a great deal. AI can be used for precision drilling. AI algorithms can be used to guide drills on land as well as water. AI-powered drilling equipment can be used to collect useful information such as pressure, temperature, and other data in real-time that can help streamline operations. AI can also be used to better control and enhance the rate of penetration of the drilling equipment and also identify risks well in advance.

Simplify Production and Maintenance

Oil and gas companies look for methods to optimize oil production. AI systems can be used for automatic pattern recognition and classification to help develop estimation and prediction models. These models can help identify areas of inefficiencies. Companies can, therefore, increase their production with the help of AI.

Similarly, the maintenance of products is a major concern faced by the oil and gas industry. Temperature changes and other environmental conditions can cause degradation of the equipment used for the storage of products. This can cause catastrophic incidents such as the BP oil spill. The event caused about 3.19 million barrels to be spilled, causing financial damages in hundreds of millions and also had a drastic impact on the environment. The spill was caused due to incorrect maintenance. AI can help avoid such instances as it can detect changes in the equipment such as corrosion or leakages with the help of computer vision and help with remote asset management.

Improve Inspection Safety

Safety workers in the oil and gas industry are exposed to potentially life-threatening conditions. The use of AI in oil and gas operations can simplify inspection procedures, helping save human lives. AI can be used to identify anomalies in the system. The AI system can collect data autonomously, safely, and in real-time and warn workers in case of a mishap. Similarly, AI robots and drones can be used for risk assessment and to monitor the condition of the equipment in high-risk zones, forgoing the need of human employees. Thus, the safety standards in the oil and gas industry can be improved significantly with the help of AI.

Enhance Customer Service

Enhance Customer Service

AI can help enhance customer service significantly. Customers may visit an organization’s website to gather information about various oil-related products sold by the company. The customer may face difficulties in finding the desired products on the websites. Artificial intelligence, in the form of chatbots, can help and guide visitors during their online journey. They can help ease the process of finding a product by assisting users. They can interact with the customers and answer their questions with the help of Natural Language Processing. AI can also be used to gather customer information and build a customer response database that can prove beneficial in improving customer service.

The opportunities for the oil and gas industry with artificial intelligence are great. However, the organizations involved will have to face two major challenges implementing AI in oil and gas operations. The first challenge that they will encounter is with data silos. Organizations might lack a holistic view of the data required to enhance operations. The data needs to flow from the top of the chain to the bottom to effectively understand the opportunities and obstacles that the organization faces easily. Organizations will be able to come up with solutions only if there is a steady flow of data and insights. 

Secondly, organizations might face issues with employee engagement. Employees might be skeptical of adopting AI due to various reasons, such as the fear of losing jobs to technology. Thus, there might be issues in creating a work culture that is welcoming of AI in oil and gas operations.

To overcome these challenges, organizations need to build an integrated data platform and adopt a company culture open to AI adoption and usage. The organizations that successfully embrace AI in oil and gas will have a competitive advantage over others. You can reach out to an experienced firm like Digital Fractal for your organization’s artificial intelligence-based solution development.