During the Technology Press Trip 2013, four Brazilian journalists covered the UTC Conference, which gathered around 850 attendees this year. The article published in the latest issue of magazine TN Petróleo can be read here (in Portuguese), but some highlights in English are below.
The event takes place annually in Bergen, home to NCE Subsea, one of the world’s largest subsea technology clusters. The exhibition received 1100 people from 22 different countries, and all the continents were represented among the exhibitors.
“In addition to the constant search for modern and safer technologies that make it possible to raise the oil recovery rate from deep waters, the main challenge of the world subsea market is the professional capacitation and high cost management of these activities”, says Maria Fernanda Romero, special envoyée to the UTC 2013, in the article published by TN Petróleo.
Challenges for the subsea industry
President of the UTC Organizer Committee and CEO of NCE Subsea, Trond Olsen remarked that a big part of the subsea equipment now in use was developed in the 80’s, and it is very important for the industry to make both new and old equipment compatible. The President of Subsea 7, Kristian Siam, points that the main technological challenges for the subsea area are now corrosion inhibitors, integrated management and the agressive environment (high temperature and pressure), and that it is very important for the sector to control costs.
One of the conference speakers and President of OneSubsea’s business unit of control systems, Werner Menz said one of the main challenges is to increase the oil recovery, which is done by drilling more wells, in deeper and farther from the coast. It results in a steadily raise in the oil barrel price. What he meant is that the industry should drill more efficiently each well rather than drill more and more wells. Menz foresees bigger challenges will come as more equipment are set underwater. This will create a huge demand for integrated data management, communication and surveillance.
Real time risk management and technical safety were key themes during the discussions. Occasional threats and unconformities must be perceived in real time, and that is why new sensors for detection of logical errors are necessary. Permanently installed sensors will have to provide information on process equipment, degrading pipeline due to corrosion, usage time, etc.,