Enabling effective and efficient operational support with pervasive connectivity of remote assets
Lighting up Dark CompressorsA few years ago, MPLX, a subsidiary of Marathon Oil, had a problem. The company provides natural gas gathering and processing services to E&P companies and operates 850 remote compression units for its gathering systems. But dealing with a hard-working compressor fleet with a diversity of vintages, makes, models, and limited remote connectivity posed a challenge because of limited visibility to asset performance and inability to perform anomaly detection to obtain optimal performance. To start the journey of bringing in the remote dark data, MPLX partnered with Monaco, an OSIsoft OEM who has embedded OSIsoft Message Format (OMF) in their MCore Secure Data Router (MCore SDR). MCore SDR is an industrially hardened multi-processor, multi-protocol device used to connect edge devices. The MCore SDR uses industrial security to efficiently connect to the PI System. The edge device can also perform edge analytics such as running the ACI compressor modeling software. MPLX elected to start with 150 of their 850 remote compressors, each with approximately 250 data streams. They developed a number of Asset Framework (AF) templates to address common and unique compressor-related components. They also developed unique anomaly detection analysis templates that were deployed in over 3,000 instances. With an asset data model in place in AF, they were able to configure web-based PI Vision displays to easily visualize performance across their compression fleet. Another key feature that significantly decreased the setup time for a new compressors was the use of OMF's capability to create the AF structure and auto create the 250 PI tags for each of the compressor's data streams. This also drove standardization and ease of use. The results have been a marked increase in reliability and availability with a corresponding decrease in associated O&M costs. Today, the compressor fleet's subject matter experts (SMEs) can efficiently provide exception-based remote support to the frontline personnel while working from home.
MPLX will continue rolling to the next round of 150 remote compressors in 2021 on their way to having all 850 remote compressors being monitored in the PI System to optimize their performance.
Figure 1: Topology of the MPLX Remote Compressor Connectivity and Data Flow
To learn more about how MPLX uses the PI System, watch MPLX's presentation here.
To learn more about remote oil and gas operations, watch the on-demand webcast here.