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Join us at Distributech 2016!

DistribuTECH 2016

We’ll be at DistribuTECH for the seventh year in a row on February 9-11 at the Orlando Convention Center. Meet us in Booth #2047 to learn how we are working with our partners to help utility companies worldwide lower costs and deliver more services on a single, intelligent, and secure platform.

Visit our booth to demo our expanded portfolio:

We'll be ready for you in Florida

A preview of our booth demo

Industrial Cybersecurity: Detect and prevent both internal and external attacks on process control systems, and remediate cybersecurity incidents.

Collaborative Solutions: Reduce the impact of natural disasters on the grid with incident response and workforce enablement solutions. Help first responders collaborate by unifying command and control communications.

Substation Gridblock: Securely manage millions of endpoints over multi-vendor, multi-technology, and multi-service utility communication networks.

Field Area Networks: Address advanced metering infrastructure, distribution automation, and remote workforce management over a single multi-service IP network platform.

Cisco IOx: Develop your own smart applications to capitalize on the power of fog computing. We are enabling developers to create IoT applications such as data aggregation, control systems, and access control – and have them run on edge network devices. Our industry-leading networking operating system Cisco IOS makes this possible together with Linux, the leading open source platform.

In addition to our demos, Read More »

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SAMREF Refinery Embraces Wireless Applications to address safety, reliability and efficiency

Cisco partner Honeywell have published great customer story illustrating the OneWireless* Network Infrastructure solution that features Cisco innovation and ruggedization. It addresses customer issues of safety, reliability and efficiency. It provides true visibility for the customer. Read on to find out more…

SAMREF is a joint venture between Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco) and Mobil Yanbu Refining Company Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corporation. The case study tells us that the SAMREF refinery complex in Yanbu, Saudi Arabia produces approximately 400,000 barrels of product daily including gasoline, heating oil, LPG, jet fuel and other energy products.

As a Control Engineering Article (Industrial wireless for mobile video monitoring) from a couple of months ago states:

“Since 2013, SAMREF has used a wireless network to enable Wi-Fi clients and ISA100 Wireless field instruments to wirelessly connect and to obtain measurements in hard-to-access locations; this works consistently and reliably in areas previously considered impractical or off-limits.

Even with the flexibility to quickly and cost-effectively employ wireless closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras, however, it is impossible to cover the entire site. As a result, those in the central control room can end up with no view of intrusions, fires, explosions, or other incidents facing emergency response teams. Plant managers or operations directors are left in the dark, usually completely reliant on verbal information from the teams on the ground.

To overcome this problem, an industrial wireless provider worked with SAMREF to deploy a live video solution for its emergency command vehicle, a first responder to any incident”***

Well, you now know that the industrial wireless partner was Honeywell, providing a solid Cisco mesh-based solution, with an architecture similar to the Honeywell image shown below.

It’s clear that SAMREF were looking for a solution that would provide strong business benefits:

  • Safety: improving plant and worker security.
  • Reliability: improving maintenance program and/or reducing maintenance costs.
  • Efficiency: managing long distance installations or remote sites with minimal up-front and life-cycle costs.

So Honeywell were charged with enhancing the customers incident management procedures and rescue ops to improve employee safety. The solution had to have a wireless network that was rugged and able to reliably transmit quality video from cameras to central control sites and mobile “Incident Commander” vehicles. That’s where Cisco and our partnership comes in:

Honeywell OneWireless

The OneWireless solution includes CISCO 1552S Access Points with integrated ISA100 Wireless**. Cisco especially designed our access points to be able to integrate with certain 3rd party protocol radios – and ISA100 being one of the main two. Each wireless access point at SAMREF includes three radios – one for communications with traditional transmitters, a second radio for communications with Wi-Fi devices and a third radio for high speed communications of field data. The CISCO Wireless LAN Controller is also an integral part of the solution. Read More »

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Cisco Security Workshop at OilComm 2015

OilComm2015

OilComm2015-CiscoGet the edge and agility to innovate, compete, and win with Cisco’s digital solutions for oil and gas. Connect machines, assets, and people across your business with proven architectures and technologies. Secure it all from board room to field worker to remote, unmanned site.

Ever wondered about how to tackle the security risks the Oil and gas industry is facing? Well, if you’re at the OilComm Conference and Exposition in the George R. Brown Convention Center Houston, TX during November 4th to 6th, check out the 10.00am to 11:30am session with joint leader Robert Albach, Cisco Product Line Manager, IoT Security: How to Build New Risk Reduction and Communications Security Strategies from Scratch
Room: 360 DE

The details are on the right, and if you attend you’ll get new insights into how to secure your critical infrastructure, how to go about assessing the risk factors, and get practical tips from a no-nonsense panel.

To add the workshop to your outlook, click here.

After you’ve attended, let us know what you think by commenting on this blog!

To find out more about Cisco in Oil and gas, go to www.cisco.com/go/oilandgas.

 

 

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Foggy weather is coming to a place near you with analytics at the edge

I caught up with Stewart Young, Global Alliance Manager at OSIsoft LLC, a Cisco partner, to find out more about ‘Edge Computing’, or, as some call it, ‘Fog Computing’. With the huge amount of data coming off Industrial sensors and outlying infrastructure, customers are trying to find more ways to rationalize the data while extracting information that they can turn into business intelligence.

 As we find out in the “A New Reality for Oil & Gas” Thought Leadership I contributed to:

“The oil and gas industry provides a prime example of the need for “edge computing.” A typical offshore oil platform generates between 1TB and 2TB of data per day.1 Most of this data is time-sensitive, pertaining to platform production and drilling-platform safety. The most common communication link for offshore oil platforms is transmitting data via a satellite connection, with data speeds ranging from 64Kbps to 2Mbps. This means it would take more than 12 days to move one day’s worth of oil-platform data to a central repository.”

There’s a better, more efficient, more ‘digitized’ way. Analyze the data in real time at the edge of the network. Take notice of anomalies and out-of-line situations. Just send on to the central repository what’s needed for decision making and for the historian. cisco equipment and solutions are getting even more intelligent, so that they can help do this. That’s thanks, in part, to IOx.

What Stewart is showing is how that works in real life. The OSIsoft PI connector runs on IOx on the edge routing equipment. That way ‘lightweight’ (aka just looking for the key anomalies) analytics can be done. And it can be done right next to where it’s happening – in harsh environments, next to oil rigs, refineries, and sensor networks. Products like the Cisco GSR and the 8X9 products have these capabilities, and you’ll see more IOx enabled products and solutions over time, and Cisco working with other partners too.

When I asked Stewart to elucidate on the business benefits (no point in reading this if there aren’t any, right?!), he explained that he’s finding customers are able to expand the sources of data that they’re collecting further out in the field or to the plant/rig/refinery, giving more visibility about what’s happening in real time across the organizational infrastructure. They’re also then able to do some of the analysis sooner and not have to pass it back to a central processing environment. So:

  • Better visibility in real time into operations
  • Broader reach for analytics into remote areas
  • Faster local analysis and response

Oil TL Paper1

 

Coming back to the Thought Leadership report “A New Reality for Oil & Gas“, and what IDC and Gartner are saying:

IDC forecasts that, with a business case built on predictive analytics and optimization in drilling, production, and asset integrity, 50 percent of oil and gas companies will have advanced analytics capabilities in place by 2016. As a result, IDC believes that O&G CEOs, for example, will expect immediate and accurate information about top shale opportunities to be available by the end of 2015, improving asset value by 30 percent2.

According to Gartner, O&G firms’ ability to leverage analytics to reduce operating costs and increase production rates “may be an essential survival skill for upstream companies.”Gartner mentioned several new analytics methods that are already benefiting the performance of subsurface activities:

  • Digital completion technologies are boosting ultimate recovery rates for unconventional reservoirs from 3-5 percent to 12 – 16 percent, vastly improving those assets’ competitiveness.
  • Advanced sensor technologies such as down-hole fiber generate high-resolution reservoir data for conventional assets, enabling more accurate modeling, simulation, and decision-making.
  • Expanded integration of real-time data from field sensors (old and new) with the reservoir model  is enabling more robust 4D modeling and, in turn, more dynamic reservoir management.

Read More »

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Oil and gas operations made safer, more efficient, and more secure

The oil and gas industry is going through challenging times. Clearly the reduced price of oil is top of mind, and organizations are therefore accelerating their move towards digital business to address major business concerns such as profitability, market share, cost controls as well as safety and security. Here is a guest blog from our Global IoE Solutions Lead for oil and gas, Serhii Konovalov that addresses many key areas of concern for our clients:

skonoval

Serhii Konovalov, Global IoE Solutions Lead for oil and gas

When our energy customers discuss business issues, two areas of concern often come up. Across the board, physical and cyber security are top-of-mind. They are also concerned that worker productivity levels should be higher.

Together with Schneider Electric, we have developed a Smart Connected Pipeline solution, which addresses both of these areas of concern. This solution helps to make pipelines more efficient and safer, and can reduce costs from losses and leaks. It will be of interest to oil and gas customers looking to implement green field (new) installations, or brown field (established) installations where they are looking to upgrade existing pipeline infrastructure.

This new solution addresses the broad pipeline infrastructure, including the control center and converged telecommunications systems. Schneider Electric is particularly versed in pipeline control systems and leak detection systems. They’ve combined their strength in operational technologies with Cisco’s experience in IT networking, security, and enterprise infrastructure. Together we’ve developed a solution tailored for the pipeline industry that:

  • Provides pipeline automation across a unified end-to-end network providing improved visualization in real-time, reducing accidents and detecting leaks faster
  • Can be implemented faster and delivers earlier return on investment because it is pre-engineered and validated.
  • Works with third-party intrusion (TPI) prevention and leak-detection systems (LDS)
  • Offers real-time control room visibility and response to out-of-line situations

Who’s using Connected Pipelines today?

A major integrated European oil and gas company that operates in around eighty-five countries around the world is using the solution to address some critical concerns.

The first concern was the risk of leaks: they wanted to detect and manage leaks better along the pipeline.

The second concern was security: they wanted to implement new physical security services along the pipeline itself, reducing theft and lowering losses. They also wanted to optimize the maintenance downtime to improve product throughput.

They had a mature infrastructure, about twenty years old, and wanted a more agile, responsive, and up-to-date digital solution. Read More »

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