Clariant - Digitizing Chemical Management
Updated: Nov 7, 2018
In the last few years, oil and gas companies and their service providers have adapted to the changing situations in the market. “We realized that for the longest time, probably 30 or 40 years, there had been no real change in the processes used in managing Chemical Services in the oil services business, particularly onshore,” says Paul Gould, Head of Global Digital Strategy from BU Oil & Mining Services at Clariant. The company noticed that the operations of oil service companies were dominated by manual processes: collecting information on paper, using Microsoft Office tools and delivery tickets, and allowing weeks to receive results for field testing.
By following market trends and listening closely to customer needs, Clariant concluded that the proper response to the falling oil prices while maintaining competitiveness was to digitize. “We considered how we could convert our chemical management operations into a digital framework. At the same time, we were surveying our customers and asking them to tell us what they expect from a chemical oil service provider,” says P. Gould. Customers were in need of higher transparency in oil services companies’ operations and a better understanding of the activities performed. Therefore, Clariant embraced the digital push and aimed to provide customers real-time information on their trucks, the chemicals held in the tanks, and other key information that tracked operational efficiency. This is now possible with VERITRAX (TM) , an intelligent chemical management system.
VERITRAX (TM) began by installing probes to monitor the usage of chemicals in the tanks in customers’ wellheads. These probes, whether they are using a cellular connection, the customer’s network, or satellite telemetry, are constantly sending information to the cloud, monitoring the use of chemicals and predicting future chemical needs through a real-time connection. “Delivery tickets are automatically sent to our drivers’ smartphones, where they report the quantity of chemicals they have delivered. The information is instantly received by the cloud and visualized in our customers’ dashboards and through our SAP invoice process,” explains P. Gould. VERITRAX (TM) also creates a two-way connection to the customers’ DCS and SCADA systems to acquire information on production activities.
According to P. Gould, the customers’ response to VERITRAX (TM) has been very positive. “Customers have shared that by using VERITRAX (TM), they have experienced a reduction in well failures, increased equipment integrity, and lower deterred losses,” says P. Gould. “The reason behind this is the use of the right chemicals that are being delivered at the correct time with the assurance of knowing that they are being dosed at the correct rate,” he adds. P. Gould mentions that before using digital technologies, there were missed deliveries; in some cases, too little or too much chemicals were being used, which resulted in multiple inefficiencies along with increased chemical spend. Digitization reduced the operators’ manpower needs, since they employed field workers who would oversee their chemical vendors. In addition, having less people out in the field has created positive safety externalities for companies. “We are switching our chemical management operations to become fully digitized. Creating a best-in-class chemical service management program involves over 600 distinct processes. With VERITRAX (TM), we have digitized all these processes,” says P. Gould.
Clariant aims to provide an intelligent digital platform and keep the oil service component of their operations up to date with new technological advancements. In addition, Clariant is currently working on an offshore prototype, which focuses on risk management and is expected to be introduced to the market later this year. “The offshore sector has always been highly automated, where chemical operations, traditionally, have not been. Introducing VERITRAX (TM) would bring risk mitigation benefits to offshore chemical management. We look forward to doing that at some point in late 2018,” says P. Gould.
Learn more about the benefits offered by VERITRAX (TM) and Clariant at www.clariant.com