Siemens launches digital system to optimise offshore operations

Siemens launches digital system to optimise offshore operations
Designed to reduce project cycle time, minimise unplanned downtime and reduce offshore manning for operations and asset monitoring, Siemens' Topsides 4.0 offers a digital roadmap to transform offshore oil and gas production.
Published: 6 September 2017 - 3:16 a.m.
By: Indrajit Sen

Siemens is utilising its digitalisation knowledge and experience and applying it to the oil and gas industry with its Topsides 4.0 solution.

Underpinned by secure communications and centred around the key modules of compression, power generation, power distribution, and automation, Siemens Topsides 4.0 offers a digital lifecycle system for offshore production facilities.

Topsides 4.0 begins during the conceptual and design phase of an offshore project and enables digital project management and manufacturing, virtual testing and commissioning, and finally delivers a smart digital twin of the topsides facility.

The digital twin comprises a virtual replica of the plant, the process and the automation system and how they interact, and assist in reducing life cycle costs through performance analytics and asset optimisation in a virtual environment.

”Digitalisation is not a passing trend, but rather a foundational value-add technology in the oil and gas industry,” Judy Marks, CEO of the Dresser-Rand business, part of Siemens Power and Gas, and CEO of Siemens USA, has said of the new product.

“Companies should not view digitalisation as an IT initiative, but rather a business transformation initiative implemented via operational technology and enabled by IT,” Marks was quoted as saying in a press release received by

Designed to reduce capital and operating expenses, shorten project development cycles, minimise interfacing risk, and reduce offshore manpower requirements, the Topsides 4.0 business model is strengthened by collaborative customer-supplier partnerships.

“For offshore vessels to reap the full benefits of digitalisation, we must combine our customer’s domain expertise with Siemens’ knowledge of products, automation and data analytics,” said Marks.

“Getting to the point where oil and gas companies feel comfortable sharing data in a secure but open ecosystem will be critical, as we jointly reinvent the oil and gas industry of today and tomorrow.”

The components comprising Siemens’ Topsides 4.0 digital solution have a strong track record of success. For example, Siemens delivered digital performance analytics for Aker BP’s Ivar Aasen offshore project off the Norwegian coast that enables Aker BP to reduce the platform’s physical manpower and optimize equipment maintenance schedules.

The project, delivered on-time and on-budget, was successful enough to help Siemens win a long-term partnership with Aker BP last year, to continue delivering digital lifecycle automation and performance analytics for Aker BP’s future field development projects.

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