What are the Real-Time Monitoring requirements for the BSEE WCR and how should it be implemented?

A pragmatic interpretation of the BSEE Well Control Rule Real-Time Monitoring (RTM) requirements and a Comprehensive Real-Time Monitoring Plan are the Keys to Success.The BSEE Well Control Rule (WCR) introduces a new requirement for collecting and transmitting well control equipment status and well integrity data when conducting “well operations with a subsea BOP or with a […]

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Implementing Digital Technologies

In January’s newsletter, we looked at the digital future and discussed how establishing operational data integrity was necessary to achieving the goal of improving operational efficiency. This month we’ll cover the first step in implementing digital technologies by defining the methods necessary to meet operational efficiency goals. In a rush to implement digital technologies, we […]

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What is the Digital Future?

If the recent downturn has taught us anything, it is that we must, and can, become more efficient in operations. Becoming more efficient means either consuming fewer resources (time, money, equipment, people) for an equivalent result, or consuming equivalent resources for an improved result. A more efficient operation delivers better results, improving the top line, […]

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2016 – A Year in Review

As we reflect on the oil and gas industry this past year, we all have faced a challenging market. But the industry is beginning to show signs of recovery, so now is the time to prepare for the increased activities predicted in 2017. However, before we close the book on 2016, let’s take a look back at Athens Group’s technical editorials of […]

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Well Intervention and The BSEE Well Control Rule:  Who Will You Call?

The BSEE Well Control Rule effective since 28 July 2016 is a significant step-change for the Oil & Gas Industry.  The requirements and stipulations encompass regulatory oversight, operational protocols, equipment design, and quality management principles derived from a variety of sources:  incorporation of industry standards, revised guidance from previous Notices to Lessees (NTLs), and implementation […]

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Improving Project Outcome with Integrated Systems Engineering at pre-FEED and FEED

Summary: A successful E & P construction project is one whose outcome meets the owner’s expectations for schedule, cost, performance, and safety. Unfortunately, there is typically an inverse relationship between the size and complexity of the project, and the certainty of a successful outcome. One of the major contributors to this inverse relationship is the […]

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The critical first steps for successful automation projects

The automation of drilling, production, and support processes is the next logical step in the evolution of technology in the increasingly digitized offshore sector. Initially, mechanization replaced human muscle power to allow more work to be done by fewer people and with larger machines. Then machine-system integration and computer-aided controls allowed the human to be […]

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Getting the KPIs right:  The critical first step in Asset Acceptance

Best practices in systems engineering and test consider the definition and alignment of an asset’s functional, operational and HSE performance requirements — and the associated key performance indicators (KPIs) — to be the critical first step in any acceptance procedure. The reason is the direct link between requirements and KPIs: The requirements define how the […]

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Part 2 of 2: Asset Preservation, Re-Activation & Stacking

Since 1998, Athens Group has worked on over 300 high specification drilling and production projects worldwide, for major oil companies, drilling contractors and shipyards. During this period of time we have been part of two major oil price cycles. In 1998 the OPEC barrel of oil price was $12.28. Today the barrel is $26.25. In between, […]

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Part 1 of 2 Series: Asset Preservation, Re-Activation and Stacking

Since 1998, Athens Group has worked on over 300 high specification drilling and production projects worldwide for major oil companies, drilling contractors and shipyards. During this period of time we have been part of two major oil price cycles: 2008 – the OPEC barrel of oil price was $12.28 USD and 2016 – the barrel is […]

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Five Stages of Asset Acceptance : A Systems Approach

Traditional Acceptance procedures for drilling and production assets are equipment centric, and typically focus on structural integrity and electro-mechanical functionality of individual machines. In most cases, the control systems responsible for the safe and effective operation of the integrated equipment system are given only cursory attention. This gap in the acceptance procedure greatly increases subsequent […]

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Five Stages of CyberSecurity Grief: Why are we stuck at DENIAL?

For at least 12 years, the international petroleum industry has been in denial about the need for proactive cybersecurity. This presentation walks through the following CyberSecurity Grief stages,  providing key questions to ask yourself and your organization, determining where you fall on the Grief Scale and how to quantifiably measure what you need to get […]

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Preparing for a Successful 20kPSI BOP Campaign

As the industry moves closer to the deployment date for the first blow-out preventers (BOPs) rated to withstand pressures of twenty thousand pounds per square inch (20kPSI), there is a notion that these new BOPs are “the same thing, just bigger”.  While technically correct, this vastly underestimates the true impact of this new technology on […]

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FPSO Life Extension: A Systems Approach

Technology enhancements that are extending the life of existing production fields, coupled with successful drilling programs are creating situations where the typical FPSO will have to remain in operation beyond it’s intended 15 to 20-year design life. Given current economic conditions, the option of building a new FPSO when the old FPSO has reached the […]

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Improve, Don’t Skip Inspections

Independent third party asset-condition inspections are a generally accepted method to meet internal quality and regulatory requirements during normal between-well operations or rig intake projects. Sometimes a decision is made to minimize or even skip these inspections based on prior operational results or a good report from the last operator of the rig. This can […]

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Beyond Non Productive Time (NPT) : Effective Production Time

With the increasing downward pressure on oil prices, drilling contractors and operators are becoming more focused on improving ROI by reducing the cost of owning and operating drilling and production assets. Considerable attention is already given to evaluating and reducing NPT. When an asset is down it is not producing any revenue for the owner […]

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New BSEE Requirements Allow Operators to be More Proactive

Athens Group explains the importance of a new general performance-based requirement that operators use recognized engineering practices to reduce risks to the lowest level practicable. On April 17, 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) proposed new rules covering blowout preventer (BOP) systems and well control for oil and gas operations in […]

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One Safety Integrity Level (SIL) Does Not Fit All: SIL Misuse and Unsafe Operational Conditions

The Safety Integrity Level (SIL) is a hazard analysis and risk mitigation method that is used to ensure electronic systems based safety functions such as fire and gas detection are fit for purpose. More recently, we have seen SIL being proposed as an OEM specification for rig operational systems such as blowout preventers (BOP) and […]

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The Value of a 3rd Party in HIL Testing

Hardware in the Loop (HIL) testing continues to gain recognition as an effective verification method to improve the delivered quality for many of the integrated control systems found on a rig. The decision to implement HIL testing is usually based on a standard return on investment (ROI) question: Will the time and cost associated with […]

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Clarifying Regulations for Independent 3rd Party Inspection of BOP and Diverter in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico

In response to the 2010 Macondo incident, the US Federal regulations governing drilling for oil and gas on the US outer continental shelf underwent several significant additions and revisions. These new and revised regulations are contained within Title 30 (Mineral Resources) Part 250 (Oil and Gas and Sulphur Operations in the Outer Continental Shelf) of […]

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