Calling all technology champions! A few years ago, I ran across the seven steps to stagnation, which was a list originally compiled by Erwin M. Soukup. I got a feeling of déjavu reading through this list because I had heard these same words spoken from many managers and peers over my career. If you search for these seven steps on the Inter-net, you will find different variations; however, the message is the same. The seven steps are

We have never done it that way.

We are not ready for that yet.

We are doing all right without it.

We tried it once, and it did not work out.

It costs too much.

That is not our responsibility.

It will not work.

Great ideas for technology improvement or development can have an early demise when faced with feedback similar to what is on this list. Even with a patent, a product may never be commercialized without someone to be its champion. While we are fortunate to have many technology champions in the area of artificial lift, we need more.

The best way to meet and learn from our industry’s best artificial-lift champions is by attending some of the artificial-lift forums, workshops, and conferences coming up in 2012 and 2013. Please check out the global events calendar on One major SPE artificial-lift event you will not see on the global calendar, however, is the 2013 Electric Submersible Pump (ESP) Workshop. This is still a section-sponsored event; however, it has grown to be the primary conference for the ESP industry (the most-recent event had 560 attendees from 24 countries). Please go to this address for more information:

The first paper highlighted features the use of a downhole linear motor to drive a reciprocating-pump system. This is a new technology that is also featured in two papers to be presented at the 2012 Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition in San Antonio, Texas, this October. The two other highlighted papers focus on offshore artificial-lift systems and discuss the unique challenges and concepts being applied.

Recommended additional reading at OnePetro:

OTC 23079 - Mobile Gas Lift Compressor and Well-Unloading System for Enhancing Oil Production and Reserves, While Reducing Greenhouse-Gas Emissions in Offshore Environments by Jarrad Rexilius, Chevron, et al.

OTC 22579 - ESP-Assisted-Production Allocation in Peregrino Field by H. Olsen, Statoil Brazil, et al.

SPE 152229 - Calculation of Gearbox Torques of Rotaflex Pumping Units Considering the Elasticity of the Load Belt by G. Takacs, University of Miskolc, et al.

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