Oil & Gas

The inspection and maintenance of assets and facilities is paramount, not only as the industry is bound by strict regulations, but to protect profits, the community, and the environment. Currently, methane leaks in the US gas and oil supply equate to 2.3% of the country’s total gas production – a staggering annual loss of 13 million metric tons of methane – posing a significant threat to the community and environment and highlighting the importance of inspection and maintenance.  (10) 

However, traditional methods of inspection, mapping and monitoring within the sector are expensive, unsafe and time consuming. Whilst profits in the Oil and Gas Sector can be among the highest, so can the operating margins, which often surpass 30%, with additional capital investments costing billions (11).  

Assets and facilities within the industry are also expansive. The US CIA estimates that there are than 3.5 million kilometers of pipelines globally, and each pipeline system is accompanied by supportive facilities, such as refineries and pumping and regulator stations. Due to the scale of such systems, it can be challenging to balance quality inspection with cost and time efficiency. (12) 

Smart and efficient, drones have long been the solution to lowering the cost and time of inspections without compromising on data provision quality and safety. Oil and gas professionals have reported that with drone mapping and modeling technology, along with AI, they have seen efficiency gains of up to 33% and up to 50% reduction in the cost of inspections. (13) 

The benefits drone technology offer is reflected in their rising popularity; oil and gas companies BP Chevron, ExxonMobil, Gazprom, Equinor are among those to have gained a license to operate drones in the last decade and the global market for drones within the industry is set to reach 16.72 billion USD by 2025.  (14) 

The future is now… implement drones into your workflow to experience enhanced data provision and analysis and high-quality inspection, mapping, and monitoring services.  

Or, to learn more, read on!

Our Services

  • Critical infrastructure inspection 
  • Pipeline inspection (RGB and Thermal) 
  • Flare stack inspection 
  • SAR (Man overboard and distress calls)  
  • Real-time surveillance and security intel  
  • Organize emergency response  
  • Protect safety of personnel onsite and monitor hazards  
  • 2D and 3D asset mapping and modelling  
  • Leak/spill detection  
  • Production and refinery monitoring and management 
  • Overseeing and managing construction sites  
  • Monitoring and managing pre-drilling/exploratory sites  

Sky to Cloud Data Reporting 

High-quality data collected during UAV inspection is relayed in clear, annotated reports, digitally formatted to be accessed conveniently from a desk, providing actionable information to clients, and enabling easy and efficient asset management. Our data storage and reporting solutions offer:

  • Cloud based platform 
  • Reporting portal which allows stakeholders to review and report upon vast data stores, quickly and easily.  
  • Defects and damages are easily annotated and assigned severity ratings, enabling swift remedial action to be taken according to priority. 
  • Reports have multiple user access and multiple export formats.  
  • In-house data storage, archiving and analytics capabilities.  

Full, turn-key solutions and support

Vantage UAV deliver turnkey solutions from full project management, flight planning and piloting, offering comprehensive support from initial consultation to final report. Our range of services and industry experts allow us to craft bespoke solutions to data management and provision challenges. 

Vantage UAV collaborate closely with clients to understand their challenges, workflow, aims and provide the best solutions. Support is always available, from real people, whenever you need it. 

Key Uses   

Leak Detection/Pipeline Inspection 

Drones execute thorough pipeline inspections and swift, accurate detection of leaks and pipe defects, enabling preemptive maintenance or repair to be conducted to prevent or limit damage caused by leaks.  

Fast, smart and cost and time efficient, drones are superior to traditional methods of pipeline inspection and monitoring; equipped with HD cameras and thermal, multi-spectral and infra-red technology, drones collect high-quality data which delivers invaluable insight on pipeline integrity.  

For a comprehensive overview of Vantage UAV pipeline inspection and leak detection services, refer to the designated section, here.

Inspection and Management of Site and Equipment  

Drones can swiftly and remotely perform inspection, mapping and monitoring activities across entire sites and facilities, such as cooling towers and flare stacks, without halting operations. Equipped with HD cameras, drones collect high-quality images, footage and data which can be used to generate 3D digital models of structures, visualizing asset integrity, inspection findings and allowing ongoing condition tracking. 

Traditional methods of inspection lack the technology and access capabilities drones possess, resulting in lower-quality data collection. In addition, after inspection, key data may be stored and analyzed by separate parties, risking inaccuracies and complications as inspection reports and information are cross referenced and compiled.  

At Vantage UAV, high-quality data and information harvested during drone flight is stored and analyzed with our specialized in-house software, resulting in fully supported, seamless data management and asset monitoring service. With 3D asset modelling, inspection findings can be visualized and dealt with swiftly, and historical data tracked to preempt issues.  

Overseeing and Managing Construction sites 

Construction projects can be vast, with multiple occurring in different areas at once, making it hard to monitor sites and track progress consistently via traditional methods. 2D designs can also be difficult to visualize and their complexity hard to transfer to reality when construction work is occurring across a large area.  

At Vantage UAV, 3D digital twin models can be created using inflight data, allowing designs to be illustrated in an accessible, realistic mode and updated easily when necessary. Drones can be deployed along pre-determined flight routes to constantly monitor construction projects and their progress, in real-time, ensuring optimal efficiency, organization and safety.  

Exploring drilling sites and resources also requires vast data collection over large areas. Whilst this is hard to achieve via traditional mapping and surveyance methods, drones provide a constant, ariel scope covering long distances, providing up to date, accurate information on equipment and sites.  

Uses & Benefits

Cost & Time Efficient

How our solutions reduce your operating cost in the short and long term.

Challenge

Manual methods of inspecting facilities, equipment and pipelines within the oil and gas sector are labor intensive, costly, and dangerous. Sites and pipeline networks are vast, making it time-consuming or impossible to inspect or monitor them on the ground. 

Whilst manned aircraft can also be used to perform inspections and are quicker than manual methods, drones operate at a fraction of the cost and time with the potential to scale efficiency by conducting multiple flights simultaneously via drone flight.

Solution

During drilling and production, drones save considerable costs associated with downtime. Traditional inspection methods require site shutdown for safety, whereas drones can conduct inspections and monitor sites without halting production, maximizing profits, and optimizing site and equipment function. 

High-Quality Data Provision and Analysis

More in depth data

Challenge

Traditionally, the oil and gas sector has relied on an aircraft and technicians to perform inspections and mapping to monitor and manage sites, facility, and pipeline integrity.  

Access is challenging within the oil and gas sector; sites and pipeline systems often exist in dangerous locations and are vast, complex, and hazardous. Helicopters provide an ariel scope but often cannot fly low enough to detect smaller faults in facilities or pipeline leaks and produce low resolution footage and imagery. Manual access is even more challenging given that pipelines often run underground or through areas with low-accessibility or unsafe terrain. 

Often defects cannot be seen by eye and only detected with sophisticated technology used at close range. For instance, it is near-impossible and dangerous to accurately detect a leak and its location visually or by scent.   

Due to the difficulty and expense of traditional methods, inspection is often limited to pre-determined routes dictated by statistical sampling, meaning key data on asset condition is missed. 

Solution

Drones offer unrivalled data collection within the oil and gas sector due to their capability to access hard to reach, vast areas, swiftly. Able to obtain a close range to pipelines, drones capture HD images and recordings of small surface defects and when equipped with LiDAR and thermal imaging payloads, can provide operators with exclusive insight into pipeline condition and accurate leak detection.  

In addition, 3D digital modelling enabled by drone-based data provision helps to accurately visualize inspection results and asset integrity, offering a multidimensional approach to asset monitoring and management.  

Drone inspections inform operators of vital issues and enables swift decision making, repair planning, preemptive maintenance, and progress tracking, optimizing production, and maintaining asset and facility integrity.  

Vantage UAV cloud-based data platform ensures data collected via flight is organized, presented, and stored to ensure maximal benefit to clients when monitoring and managing sites, facilities, equipment, and pipelines. Operators also have convenient, unlimited access to historic data which can help to track weaknesses and anticipate issues.

Full Scope, Survey and Access

Survey and Access

Challenge

Whilst helicopters also provide an ariel overview and are faster than manual inspections and surveys, their use often requires downtime, is limited by weather conditions, and may not obtain a close enough proximity to structures for thorough inspection.  

In contrast, drones can withstand harsh weather conditions, perform multiple inspections with greater cost and time efficiency, and their agility enables them to obtain close range to structures whilst navigating obstacles. 

Solution

Due to their aerial nature, drones provide a wider, comprehensive view of sites within the oil and gas industry, faster, than manual methods of inspection and surveillance, facilitating swift detection and response to issues. Able to access hazardous or hard-to-reach areas without requiring operational downtime or placing personnel at risk, drones enable full, thorough inspections of infrastructure and sites.

Increased Safety

Safety is our priority 

Challenge

Inspections within the oil and gas industry can be dangerous; heavy-duty industrial equipment, flammable substances, toxic fumes, and pressurized gas pose a risk to technicians. Accessing high structures or confined spaces, or areas of conflict or political hostility in which oil is often found, increases risk to technicians.  

When incidents or accidents do occur within the oil and gas industry, they can be highly dangerous and emergency response teams are unable to access the site without a clear overview of the situation and safety clearance. 

Solution

Due to their maneuverability and agility, drones can be used to access and inspect inhospitable, confined, and hazardous areas remotely, limiting access risks to technicians during the inspection phase.  

Drones can be deployed to the site of an incident and provide real-time footage and actionable information to the command center, enabling emergency services to coordinate a response swiftly and safely. 

Enhanced Security and Surveillance

Maintain safety and security

Challenge

Performing patrols and perimeter surveillance manually or with helicopters is both difficult and expensive as larger facilities are expansive, hazardous and require continuous, high-coverage patrols to maintain safety and security.

Solution

Utilizing drones to survey and patrol sites provides a comprehensive ariel scope and consistent real-time footage to ensure all areas are covered at all times, helping to detect and prevent vandalism, theft, detect hazards and monitor personnel safety. 

Environment

Keep your operation green

Challenge

Traditional methods of inspection can be carbon intensive, utilizing helicopters, cranes and vehicles which all increase Scope 1 and 3 emissions. 

Solution

Drones reduce Scope 1 and 3 emissions associated with other methods of inspection and surveyance, such as helicopters, cranes, and company vehicles.  

Drones are less intrusive and disruptive to wildlife than helicopters as they emit less noise pollution and execute flights faster. By facilitating the rapid detection of leaks, or preemptive maintenance required to avoid them, drones can help to prevent or limit ecological damage and loss of life. In the event of a leak, drones allow emergency response teams to assess and efficiently manage incidents to mitigate environmental damage. 

Sector Specifics: Inspections in the Telecommunication Industry  

Telecommunications are an integral form of power infrastructure, responsible for key modes of communication within both public and private spheres. It is paramount that communication is reliably maintained or retrieved in the event of adverse weather events and natural disasters so that emergency services are contactable.  

Fortunately, Vantage UAV drone-based services offer the telecommunications industry a smart, safe, and efficient route to achieving reliable connectivity! 

 

Benefits:  

  • Safe inspection – reducing technician height access 
  • HD footage and images of mast and physical damages  
  • Accurate detection of network coverage interference  
  • Low Scope 3 emissions – eliminating the use of helicopters or bucket trucks during the inspection phase and limiting scaffolding waste.  
  • Findings can inform increased connectivity and solve or preempt reoccurring issues   
  • Ability to survey masts comprehensively, despite difficult or inhospitable location  
  • Close proximity inspection to vital network carrier components whilst avoiding obstacles 
  • Ecological: check for nests without disturbing birds  
  • Drones can withstand adverse weather conditions and provide access over inhospitable terrain  
  • Fast inspection time means more masts can be inspected in shorter time periods, relative to other methods  
  • Ability to generate 3D digital twin of masts, allowing continual surveyance and monitoring  
  • In-flight data stored and analyzed within specialized Cloud Software and organized in annotated reports designed to be simple and easily accessible, making decision within telecommunications straightforward and stress-free. 
  • Historic data storage enables fault patterns or reoccurrences to be identified and mitigated. 

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