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Interviews




Oil / Gas

Oil / Gas



 

India boasts a growing economy, and is increasingly a significant consumer of oil and natural gas. With high economic growth rates and over 15 percent of the world’s population, India is a significant consumer of energy resources. In 2009, India was the fourth largest oil consumer in the world, after the United States, China, and Japan. Despite the global financial crisis, India’s energy demand continues to rise. In terms of end-use, energy demand in the transport sector is expected to be particularly high, as vehicle ownership, particularly of four-wheel vehicles, is forecast to increase rapidly in the years ahead. India lacks sufficient domestic energy resources and imports much of its growing energy requirements. In addition to pursuing domestic oil and gas exploration and production projects, India is also stepping up its natural gas imports, particularly through imports of liquefied natural gas.

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), coal/peat account for nearly 40 percent of India’s total energy consumption, followed by nearly 27 percent for combustible renewables and waste. Oil accounts for nearly 24 percent of total energy consumption, natural gas six percent, hydroelectric power almost 2 percent, nuclear nearly 1 percent, and other renewables less than 0.5 percent. Although nuclear power comprises a very small percentage of total energy consumption at this time, it is expected to increase in light of international civil nuclear energy cooperation deals. According to the Indian government, nearly 30 percent of India’s total energy needs are met through imports.

The current scenario

Oil

The Indian government continues to hold licensing rounds in an effort to promote exploration activities and boost domestic oil production. According to Oil & Gas Journal (OGJ), India had approximately 5.6 billion barrels of proven oil reserves as of January 2010, the second-largest amount in the Asia-Pacific region after China. India’s crude oil reserves tend to be light and sweet, with specific gravity varying from 38° API in the offshore Mumbai High field to 32° API at other onshore basins. India produced roughly 880 thousand barrels per day (bbl/d) of total oil in 2009 from over 3,600 operating oil wells. Approximately 680 thousand bbl/d was crude oil; the remainder was other liquids and refinery gain. In 2009, India consumed nearly 3 million bbl/d, making it the fourth largest consumer of oil in the world. EIA expects approximately 100 thousand bbl/d annual consumption growth through 2011.

The combination of rising oil consumption and relatively flat production has left India increasingly dependent on imports to meet its petroleum demand. In 2009, India was the sixth largest net importer of oil in the world, importing nearly 2.1 million bbl/d, or about 70 percent, of its oil needs. The EIA expects India to become the fourth largest net importer of oil in the world by 2025, behind the United States, China, and Japan. Nearly 70 percent of India’s crude oil imports come from the Middle East, primarily from Saudi Arabia, followed by Iran. The Indian government expects this geographical dependence to rise in light of limited prospects for domestic production.

Natural Gas

Despite major new natural gas discoveries in recent years, India continues to plan on gas imports to meet its future needs. According to Oil and Gas Journal, India had approximately 38 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) of proven natural gas reserves as of January 2010. The EIA estimates that India produced approximately 1.4 Tcf of natural gas in 2009, a 20 percent increase over 2008 production levels. The bulk of India’s natural gas production comes from the western offshore regions, especially the Mumbai High complex, though the Bay of Bengal and its Krishna-Godavari (KG) fields are proving quite productive. The onshore fields in Assam, Andhra Pradesh, and Gujarat states are also significant sources of natural gas production. In 2009, India consumed roughly 1.8 Tcf of natural gas, almost 300 billion cubic feet (Bcf) more than in 2008, according to EIA estimates. Natural gas demand is expected to grow considerably, largely driven by demand in the power sector. The power and fertilizer sectors account for nearly three-quarters of natural gas consumption in India. Natural gas is expected to be an increasingly important component of energy consumption as the country pursues energy resource diversification and overall energy security. Despite the steady increase in India’s natural gas production, demand has outstripped supply and the country has been a net importer of natural gas since 2004. India’s net imports reached an estimated 445 Bcf in 2009.

Benefits of Automation in Oil and Gas Industry

Rather than requiring an operator to examine each well’s status every day, the concept of management by exception is used to provide information about anomalies in alarm or color coded fashion. The automation software alerts the user to any parameter that is out of an ordinary operating range as defined by the user. For example:

  • The analytical features of the automation system allow the user to make changes to the operational parameters of the wells.

  • The concept of managing wells by “exception” promotes the ability to keep downtime to a minimum in two ways. First, when a well does go down, the operator can be notified immediately – even if the operator is off the property. Second, these automation tools provide indications that a well may be heading toward a failure of one type or another. With the second case, the user can prevent downtime rather than react to it by correcting the factors that are leading the well into a failure condition.

  • Problems that reduce the production of a well can be seen through trends and displays of historical data. By examining the downhole card of a beam-pumped well, a user of the system can identify problems such as traveling valve and standing valve leaks, barrel / plunger fit, friction, unanchored tubing, and gas compression.

  • Diagnose Problems and their causes are obvious based on the data received from the well. Examples of these include:

  • Pump Wear

  • Excess Friction

  • Rod Overstress

  • Gas Compression

  • Gearbox Overload

  • High Fluid Level Detection

  • Tubing Anchor Slippage / Movement

It is proven that the installation of a comprehensive automation system (and correct diagnosis followed by the appropriate corrective actions) will typically reduce repair and maintenance expense by 10% to 30% per year.


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