New monitoring platform aims to teach artificial lift autonomy

Cloud computing, artificial intelligence and machine learning are all talked about from industry to industry. Now, they are coming into the oil patch.

Startup Boomerang SCADA is launching a platform comprised of proprietary software, cloud computing and peripherals that teach artificial lift systems to monitor and automate themselves.

“The way it’s monitored is based on an old architecture, where you get readings every 10 minutes,” explained Austin deGraaf, vice president of operations. “The new wave is microservers, cloud computing and edge devices.”

Instead of building one huge monolithic system, he said Boomerang can build a system to do different tasks at different levels – monitoring all the oil wells, setting downhole parameters and surface parameters – at the same price as that information every 10 minutes. .

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“An edge device sits at the edge of the microserver. If you teach the rules of that device and put algorithms into the device, it can detect anomalies and make live changes,” said deGraaf.

Experts will need those rules teaching machines, especially in the oil patch, teaching individual rules to individual wells, he noted.

“We have a client, Mike. We put Mike’s brain in a box – Mike is in a box,” deGraaf said.

The company’s platform is being well received, and deGraaf said what they’re seeing is that edge devices are being taught semi-autonomous rules.

“We think it will take six months to a year before clients are comfortable giving up full independence,” he said of himself and the two colleagues who founded the company. “When they see wells speed up or slow down every morning, they’ll be more comfortable transitioning to full independence.”

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There will still be work to be done in the field, but that will require fewer people and allow companies to better deploy their staff.

Boomerang works with operators and artificial lift companies to customize its platform, which deGraaf said can monitor 1,000 wells or 10 wells.


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