Weatherford International plc (WFT) has commercially released ForeSite® Edge, the next generation of well automation and control. ForeSite Edge significantly expands on the capabilities of a traditional controller by harnessing the power of the company's industry-leading ForeSite production optimization and CygNet® IoT/SCADA platforms. Together, these technologies introduce Production 4.0 intelligence to the wellsite, which increases uptime and profitability, boosts production autonomously and improves personal efficiency.
ForeSite Edge is the first oilfield technology of its kind to combine lift control, production optimization and IoT infrastructure.
The foundation of ForeSite Edge is the Weatherford ForeSite and CygNet software platforms. ForeSite, which is the industry's only enterprise-level optimization platform from the wellbore to point of sale, encompasses asset-management workflows for the life of any well from natural flow to all forms of artificial lift in addition to hydrocarbon flow in pipelines and surface facilities.
ForeSite, which is available in both hosted and Google Cloud-based installation, pairs with CygNet IoT/SCADA software and sensor infrastructure to deliver Production 4.0 capabilities at the wellsite, or "on the Edge." This industry-leading software combination acquires, stores and manages high-frequency well data and engineering models at the wellsite for continuous production optimization that includes autonomous lift adjustments and well-performance diagnostics. In sum, it incorporates all the components of Industry 4.0 into one product: ForeSite Edge.
"The production phase is the next frontier for realizing significant efficiency gains and cost reductions," saidManoj Nimbalkar, Vice President Production Automation and Software at Weatherford. "Edge computing connects intelligent devices to current and historical data so that autonomous decisions can be made where they matter most – at the wellsite. In the oil and gas industry, this means lower-level, day-to-day decision making can be transferred to autonomous computers, which frees personnel to focus on higher-priority projects and tasks."
The Weatherford ForeSite and CygNet platforms monitor and optimize 460,000 wells around the world, monitor 125,000 miles of oil and gas pipeline and manages 30 billion data updates daily. Using these technologies on the Edge, operators can gather both historical-trend and real-time production data from instruments from each well asset wide.
With a capacity to access years of high-frequency, real-time sensor data from the wellsite, ForeSite Edge uses a suite of comprehensive calculation and modeling engines—including physics-based well models—to optimize production. This new technology also delivers advanced analytics at the wellsite to enable continuously and autonomously optimized performance for reciprocating-rod-lifted and gas-lifted wells. More forms of artificial lift will be added in the coming months.
"Edge systems deliver instant, intelligent IoT-based data notifications, and, essentially, place data collection and daily operational tasks on autopilot," said Nimbalkar. "Operators are alerted immediately when sensors detect variances in performance or trends, failures or imbalances in equipment, when slugging occurs in wells or when operating parameters pass critical limits. Alerts can be sent to any device, allowing users to respond and take corrective action in real time."
Installed as a standalone automation device or paired with either conventional Weatherford or competitor automation equipment, the wellsite intelligence collected by ForeSite Edge can be pushed to any authorized device in the world from laptop to smartphone.
ForeSite Edge Features and Benefits
• Harnesses Production 4.0 technologies—including IoT-enabled hardware and advanced analytics—to provide true autonomous well management that increases production and uptime
• Unifies all data siloes into a single, real-time information ecosystem
• Pushes data via MQTT protocol to deliver continuous real-time data and instantaneous alerts when human intervention is required
• Updates engineering models on the Edge—or at the wellsite—to deliver a comprehensive view of production performance
• Boosts rod-lift production through autonomous idle-time management
• Maximizes gas-lift efficiency with autonomous injection-gas management
• Detects rod-lift imbalances and generates instant alerts
• Enhances production decisions with high-frequency data and storage capabilities up to 3.5 million rod-lift dynamometer cards
• Improves personnel efficiency by enabling production teams to focus on proactive optimization rather than reactive maintenance