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PETRONAS leads 5G technology test aimed to strengthen local oil and gas industry



PETRONAS leads 5G technology test aimed to strengthen local oil and gas industry. Image: Wikimedia/Divulgação Petrobras
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PETRONAS aims to leverage the fifth generation (5G) technology to elevate the national oil and gas industry through automation and digital transformation.  It is now in the midst of running a 5G Testbed Programme, as part of the Malaysian Government’s 5G deployment strategies.

The Programme, involving a cutting-edge demonstration facility set up at Institut Teknologi Petroleum PETRONAS in Kuala Nerus, is being carried out with the support of the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission.

Minister of Communications and Multimedia, Dato’ Saifuddin Abdullah visited the Programme site recently, accompanied by EXCO members from the Terengganu State Government and a Celcom representative. Also present were MCMC Chairman Dr Fadhlullah Suhaimi Abdul Malek; PETRONAS Chief Technology Officer Dr Nasir Darman and INSTEP Chief Executive Officer Idris Ibrahim.

Dato’ Saifuddin told journalists that to date, there were 71 use cases (steps) for 5G technology being demonstrated under the 5G Demonstration Projects initiative, which are expected to contribute meaningfully towards the Government’s preparation to implement commercial 5G technology in the near future. He said: “For individual usage, MCMC naturally wants to optimise 4G access for now, but for industries, there is definitely a need for 5G technology.”

Dato’ Saifuddin pointed out that for the oil and gas industry, only PETRONAS is participating in the demonstration project so far. Nevertheless, MCMC believes that more companies would be interested in using 5G technology.

Dr Nasir Darman said: “The 5G technology is in line with PETRONAS’ aspiration towards automation and digital implementation, both within the Group as well as the oil and gas industry.

“PETRONAS aims to have fully remote operations in the near future. This fully remote operation will be conducted from an onshore control centre utilising 5G network, therefore significantly reducing hazard risks at offshore facilities while at the same time, supporting pace and sustainability,” he added.

Dr Nasir highlighted that PETRONAS’ initiative in leading 5G tests for the industry’s 5G use cases is aimed at benefiting the ecosystem as a whole. He also urged the industry to deploy their own 5G use cases early to ensure that the needs of industry players are equitably addressed in 5G spectrum planning and policymaking.

The anticipated 5G adoption is an enabler to propel PETRONAS’ digital transformation agenda, leading to improved operational efficiency, safety enforcement, asset optimisation and increased productivity.

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Milaha signs key deal with major oilfield services firm




Milaha signs key deal with major oilfield services firm. Image: MILAHA
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Milaha, one of the largest Maritime and Logistics Organizations in the Middle East, has entered into a formal agreement to cooperate with leading American oilfield services firm, Schlumberger Limited.

The Offshore & Marine pillar of Milaha signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will support value building projects while jointly driving Tawteen initiatives for Qatar. Led by Qatar Petroleum, the “Tawteen” program aims to localize the energy sector’s supply chain and create new investment opportunities to retain ‘economic value’ in Qatar.

Signed as a five-year joint development project, it will include a Qatar-owned, Qatar-flagged and Qatar-operated Oil Well Stimulation Vessel. The first of these vessels will be designed and outfitted in the country, creating the inaugural FLEXSTIM platform, which will be modified, owned and operated locally.

Pre-engineering for this significant scheme has already begun and will evolve during the final quarter of 2020.

The resulting Qatar-owned value chain will be a joint service that enhances the expertise of a global multinational service firm like Schlumberger as well as the leading Qatar-based multi-disciplined local service company like Milaha.

With over 70 years of presence in Qatar, Schlumberger supplies the petroleum industry with several key services such as seismic acquisition and processing, well testing and directional drilling, artificial lifts, well completions and groundwater extraction.

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SCF and NOVATEK order 10 LNG carriers for Arctic LNG 2 from Zvezda Shipyard with financing from VEB.RF



SCF and NOVATEK order 10 LNG carriers for Arctic LNG 2 from Zvezda Shipyard with financing from VEB.RF. Image: Sovcomflot
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SMART LNG, a joint venture of SCF Group and NOVATEK, has signed contracts with VEB.RF Group and Zvezda Shipbuilding Complex to construct and lease ten icebreaking Arc7 LNG carriers. Simultaneously, SMART LNG signed long-term time charter agreements for these ten vessels with Arctic LNG 2, the operator of the Arctic LNG 2 project.

In total, contracts for 15 such vessels have now been signed, including shipbuilding, financing, lease, and time charter contracts. The contracts for the lead ship in the series were signed by SCF Group in October 2019, and the contracts for another four sister ships were signed by SMART LNG in January 2020.

SCF Group continues to implement its strategy, with the goal of steadily growing the Company’s value through expanding its portfolio of long-term industrial shipping contracts, with a special focus on operations in challenging climatic and ice conditions. With ten long-term time charters added to this portfolio, SCF Group has USD 20 billion in contracted future earning and receivables.

The vessels will be operated under the Russian Federation flag. The Russian Maritime Register of Shipping (RS) will provide supervision during the construction of the vessel series.

Igor Tonkovidov, President and CEO of SCF Group, commented:

“Shipbuilding and time charter contracts for 15 Arc7 LNG carriers, signed between 2019-2020, enable the Russian shipping community to play a role in transporting cargoes of strategic importance for the Russian economy, which are generated by large-scale energy projects in the Russian Arctic. These contracts will also help to further develop our national expertise in ice navigation and create over 850 new jobs for Russian seafarers, as all the 15 vessels will have Russian crews. We are pleased to see that this new generation of Arctic LNG carriers, which will contribute significantly to growing the cargo traffic along the Northern Sea Route, was designed based on SCF’s long-standing experience of safely operating vessels in ice conditions. Equally significant is the fact that the cooperation between SCF, NOVATEK, VEB.RF Group and Russian shipbuilders paves the way for establishing the domestic production of LNG carriers, which entails adopting advanced technologies and engineering solutions.”

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Kongsberg and Shell sign JAWS agreement 



Kongsberg and Shell sign JAWS agreement. Image: Kongsberg
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Kongsberg Maritime, part of KONGSBERG, has signed an agreement with Shell International Trading and Shipping Company Limited (Shell), to deliver Shell’s patented draft and trim optimisation software, Just Add Water System (JAWS).

Kongsberg Maritime will deliver the software through its digital solution, including JAWS as an application in the K-IMS suite; a portfolio of specialised applications to support complex operations. This will enable JAWS to be immediately available to hundreds of LNG customers who are already benefiting from Kongsberg Maritime’s established, reliable K-IMS solution, as well as to new Kongsberg Maritime customers.

“We are looking forward to seeing JAWS and K-IMS contributing significantly to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and fuel costs for both vessel owners and charterers,” said Egil Haugsdal, President, Kongsberg Maritime. “The agreement between our companies sets an encouraging example to the industry, showing how shipping can become greener through close collaboration between different actors in the market, contributing to the creation of sustainable, value solutions which benefit everyone. From day one, the teamwork between Shell and Kongsberg Maritime has been of an excellent standard, and we are very excited to be kicking off this program.”

The technology has been developed by Shell, working with the University of Southampton, and has been deployed on more than 50 ships so far. Shell is increasing deployment of the software on its LNG fleet, starting with a further 20 vessels this year.

Grahaeme Henderson, Global Head of Shell Shipping & Maritime said, “Regardless of the different pathways to decarbonisation, efficiency technologies will be the foundation for a decarbonised shipping industry. JAWS is a low cost, quick to deploy software that can deliver fuel savings and emissions reductions today. We have achieved up to a 7% reduction in emissions on our own ships using the software and, working with Kongsberg Maritime, we hope to see JAWS implemented across the industry.”

The JAWS software uses historic, high-frequency data from the vessel to determine the optimal conditions on previous voyages, which enables the system to advise on how best to enhance a vessel’s draft and trim at any given speed to reduce fuel consumption and lower emissions. JAWS also monitors and reports live fuel and emissions savings back to managers, to give real-time insight into the benefits of deploying this technology across a fleet.

Real-life testing of the JAWS system, delivered through Kongsberg Maritime’s interactive, web-based K-IMS (Information Management System) application suite, demonstrates that the software is an invaluable source of situational awareness, lending new insights to vessel handling and decision making.

The DNV GL Technology Qualification (TQ) is the process whereby the developer can provide evidence to an independent third party to assess whether new technologies will meet safety and reliability criteria with an acceptable level of confidence. DNV GL has assisted the development of JAWS by assessing the methodologies employed and ensuring that the calculations provided by the software are based on the accurate and reliable use of data.

“It is clear that decarbonisation is going to be a generational challenge for the shipping industry,” said Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, Maritime CEO, DNV GL. “This will require that the industry looks to unlock every efficiency to reduce fuel use, especially by taking advantage of the opportunities created by greater connectivity and digitalisation. At DNV GL we are proud to be able to help forward-looking companies like Shell and KONGSBERG realise these gains by ensuring that new technologies like JAWS can be deployed with confidence in their safety and reliability.”

By uniting all data-logging and communication channels into one secure solution, the collaborative K-IMS solution presents a comprehensive information flow which provides a common, user-friendly solution for fleet owners, charterers and third parties alike. To date, more than 200 deliveries of K-IMS have been made within the LNG sector, and K-IMS is also establishing an appreciable market footprint in the offshore segment.



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