Despite the downturn, the oil and gas industry remains a crucial contributor to Scotland’s economy. But in this challenging economic climate, operators have had to address inefficiencies and optimise their output to ensure their survival. Increasingly, the industry is turning to new technology like data analytics, automation and robotics to modernise their operations.
Aberdeen’s Oil & Gas Technology Centre is aiming to spark a ‘robotics revolution’ within the oil and gas industry through Robotics Week – a series of events exploring and accelerating the use of intelligent systems offshore. The week will run from the 30th October to the 2nd of November in the Centre’s new Innovation Hub, and will connect leaders from the oil and gas industry with experts and academia in robotics.
Workshops using pioneering facilitation tools and techniques will evaluate the potential uses of air, land and sea robotics, thanks to the Edinburgh Centre of Robotics and its new Offshore Robotics for Certification of Assets (ORCA) Hub. From this preliminary research, technology projects and research programmes from the ORCA Hub will be planned.
Three further open events will allow visitors to experience some state-of-the-art technology first-hand, while Tech Talks will explore the more general applications for robotics and what the future has in-store.
Only Scratching The Surface
Rebecca Allison, Asset Integrity Solution Centre Manager for the Oil & Gas Technology Centre, said: “The potential application of robotics in offshore oil & gas is almost limitless, but as an industry we’ve only scratched the surface of what’s possible. Companies could re-imagine their business processes and reap a productivity transformation.
“Robotics Week will help us to understand and collaborate on the challenges, solutions and opportunities. We’re bringing together experts from oil and gas, robotics and academia, and the outcomes can be acted upon almost immediately in terms of research and future funding from the Centre and industry.”
Prof. David Lane, Centre Director for the Edinburgh Centre for Robotics and one of the Week’s keynotes, said: “In many sectors, we’re seeing a significant increase in the use of robots and autonomous systems working with people to improve productivity and efficiency. In the offshore oil and gas industry, I think the use of robotics in hazardous environments is a key growth area.
“The UK has the opportunity and potential to be one of the leading countries in the world in the development of robotics. We have a great research base, which is well invested, and what we’re going to see is new companies and new businesses taking this technology to lots of different markets, including oil and gas, renewables and more.”