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Unmanned platforms – challenges and opportunities

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Operators in the oil and gas sector are facing some big challenges – many of which are being exacerbated by the current pandemic.
Oil prices are low and production in a surplus. The cyclic nature of the industry means there is an ongoing need for cost saving and efficiency. However, keeping production costs lean must be balanced with the need for safety. This not only involves a duty of care to personnel working in demanding conditions, but also involves establishing a long-term sustainable strategy that focuses on reducing the environmental impact of production.
Developments in digitalisation have gone a long way in helping the offshore sector respond to these multiple, sometimes conflicting, challenges. For example, increased automation means that production and maintenance issues can be spotted much earlier, preventing them from developing into a serious problem.
Unmanned, not normally unmanned & minimum manned platform installations are becoming increasingly common, because they facilitate remote operation with significantly reduced onsite personnel. This reduces human risk and significantly lowers the cost of managing offshore gas and oil fields.
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