The answer is simple:
Plant safety and plant production efficiency.
Operating procedures for an oil and gas installation represent the main element of operational barriers, preventing the occurrence of undesirable events such as accidents and plant shut downs. The basic purpose of procedures or check lists is to make all operators perform tasks the same and best way. When everyone follow the same procedure, it becomes easier to detect and correct potential weaknesses in the procedure.
In short, you need structured and detailed operating procedures to cover all operational aspects, and at the same time acting as robust operational barriers. Many plants, however, suffer from the lack of proper procedures covering the main elements of operation;
- Normal start-ups and shut-downs
- Recovery after plant trips
- Routine operations
- Preparations for maintenance.
In addition, start-ups and shut-downs and recovery after trips should have a diagram instructing the sequences of systems in various operation scenarios. The reasons for this short fall of proper procedures can be many, but would broadly be due to difficulties in structuring, detailing and maintaining such a set of operating instructions. If you are not sure that a procedure is correct, complete and up to date, it will not be used. If this is wide spread, your plant is operated as operators individually see fit.
To mitigate this, the SATOS concept will assure the following:
- The SATOS concept provides, if needed, a guideline for developing structured and detailed operating procedures to cover all operational aspects. Excisting procedures can easily be uploaded into SATOS.
- The SATOS software provides an online solution for handling operations procedures and check Lists, to increase safety and regularity by facilitating standardized and effective operations.
SATOS uses database solutions to access procedures, checklists and other relevant information for the operator. Control room operators can collaborate with specialists in an Onshore Operation Centre and with suppliers, since procedures and operations progress can be followed from all locations. SATOS will make it easy for operators to;
- Have access to procedures for all relevant operations scenarios and train on the same to assure competence.
- Maintain and improve procedures.
- Document in completed and saved procedures, who did what and when.
Minimum plant down-time is obviously key to production efficiency. In this context, particular focus is put on unscheduled down-time. Many studies have suggested that more than half of unscheduled down-time is due to operator error. The cause of these errors, resulting in plant trips, can be;
- Operating procedure was not available
- Operating procedure was available, but not followed
- Operating procedure was erroneous or not updated .
Unscheduled down-time may be due to trips only, but also human caused serious hydrocarbon leaks. In either case, revenue is lost.
Undoubtedly, the deployment of the SATOS concept, as outlined above, can reduce unscheduled down-time by preventing trips. In addition, quicker restarts and plant recovery after trips also make a contribution.
SATOS can be a central “working tool” helping experienced operators as well as new operator recruits to have a common focus on value creation through production.
Please take a look at the SATOS overview video below.