• 256 days Will The ECB Continue To Hike Rates?
  • 256 days Forbes: Aramco Remains Largest Company In The Middle East
  • 258 days Caltech Scientists Succesfully Beam Back Solar Power From Space
  • 658 days Could Crypto Overtake Traditional Investment?
  • 663 days Americans Still Quitting Jobs At Record Pace
  • 665 days FinTech Startups Tapping VC Money for ‘Immigrant Banking’
  • 668 days Is The Dollar Too Strong?
  • 668 days Big Tech Disappoints Investors on Earnings Calls
  • 669 days Fear And Celebration On Twitter as Musk Takes The Reins
  • 671 days China Is Quietly Trying To Distance Itself From Russia
  • 671 days Tech and Internet Giants’ Earnings In Focus After Netflix’s Stinker
  • 675 days Crypto Investors Won Big In 2021
  • 675 days The ‘Metaverse’ Economy Could be Worth $13 Trillion By 2030
  • 676 days Food Prices Are Skyrocketing As Putin’s War Persists
  • 678 days Pentagon Resignations Illustrate Our ‘Commercial’ Defense Dilemma
  • 679 days US Banks Shrug off Nearly $15 Billion In Russian Write-Offs
  • 682 days Cannabis Stocks in Holding Pattern Despite Positive Momentum
  • 683 days Is Musk A Bastion Of Free Speech Or Will His Absolutist Stance Backfire?
  • 683 days Two ETFs That Could Hedge Against Extreme Market Volatility
  • 685 days Are NFTs About To Take Over Gaming?
Drone Deliveries Just In Time For Christmas

Drone Deliveries Just In Time For Christmas

Drone deliveries were once just…

Apple Stocks Falls After Blowout Earnings Report

Apple Stocks Falls After Blowout Earnings Report

Yet despite what is clearly…

The Biggest Problem In The Cashless Revolution

The Biggest Problem In The Cashless Revolution

There's a glaring problem in…

Oilprice.com

Oilprice.com

Writer, OilPrice.com

Information/Articles and Prices on a wide range of commodities: We have assembled a team of experienced writers to provide you with information on Crude Oil,…

Contact Author

  1. Home
  2. Tech
  3. Consumer Electronics

Drones Are Taking Oil Jobs

Robot

The drones are coming to oil and gas and they may soon be intelligent enough to replace humans in on-site inspections. That’s what the latest experiments carried out by drone makers in the oil field suggest, with the drone makers boasting much shorter inspection times and comparable inspection accuracy.

Right now, time and accuracy of inspections are the top priorities. “If we could do that [facilities inspections] much more quickly and in many more sites at the same time using drone technology, then we're giving these companies an unprecedented level of visibility that they previously would have struggled to achieve at the same rate with the same ease,” one drone maker told Forbes’ Mark Venables.

Renner Vaughn, from drone maker Cape, also said the company is now working on boosting the machines’ “intelligence” to boost the accuracy and comprehensiveness of the inspections. Also, there is the possibility of oil company inspectors to do the inspecting themselves from their offices, via a real-time feed from the drone.

Another company, aerial intelligence supplier Measure, recently gauged the accuracy of drone inspections on a solar power facility compared to the accuracy of human inspections. The result was a near tie at 99 percent accuracy for both humans and UAVs. There was one big difference, however. The human inspection took two days. The drone inspection took just two hours.

Sure, solar installations are not oil fields, but they are energy facilities nonetheless, so the results of Measure’s study could be extrapolated and applied to the oil industry as well. It’s all about attention to detail, so to speak, and knowing what to look for, combined with the very pro-drone fact that they could get to the facility to be inspected much more quickly than humans who have to drive there.

Related: China’s Trail Of Unsustainable Debt

Drone use is on the rise in pipeline inspections as well. “Examples include looking for signs of a leak by examining vegetation that appears stressed, high-accuracy mapping and location of pipeline infrastructure, looking for vegetative encroachment, erosion or other concerns in hard-to-reach areas, and we are also working on some NDT testing by drone, to include material thickness testing of vessels and pipelines,” according to Jason Worley, CEO of another drone-using company, Asset Drone.

The oil and gas industry, however, has a long way to go to fully utilize the opportunities provided by drone technology. That’s no surprise: it is a notoriously wary industry, after all, used to doing things the way they have been done for decades. Also, drone inspections do not work 100 percent of the time for 100 percent of facilities in the wider energy industry: Measure’s study found that manual inspections bested drone ones in wind farms, for example.

Yet things are changing. Drone technology is new and there’s plenty of space for further innovation. Cost-efficiency, speed, and accuracy will continue to be top priorities for both the oil industry and its aerial intelligence services providers, so facility inspection could soon become yet another segment of oil and gas where machines begin to replace people.

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

More Top Reads From Safehaven.com

Back to homepage

Leave a comment

Leave a comment