Abstract

There are many distinct industry sectors within the offshore Oil and Gas Industry and each of these demand specific knowledge, experience and understanding. However, there is also the need in today's environment to have an overview of all areas and the ability to enable cross-fertilization of information, developments, products, successes and failures between these sectors. This approach maximizes a company's ability to provide innovative technical solutions that enable it to develop and supply products that allow the industry to reach farther and deeper whilst working faster, smarter, safer, and more cost-effectively.

This paper will detail how having knowledge of all significant areas of the offshore Oil and Gas Industry has led to many technically innovative solutions in underwater optical and electrical connector systems.

Introduction

In today's industry it is important to understand the requirements of a specific sector of the industry and to use this understanding in the generation of solutions to meet these requirements. With previous experience obtained in a particular sector it is normal for companies to focus on this experience and develop existing designs using this experience to meet these requirements. However, due to the increasing need for innovative, yet cost-effective solutions, in ever decreasing timescales, it is becoming equally important to have the ability to call upon expertise from other sectors of the industry, to ensure that the preferred technical and commercial solution is offered, rather than just a development of existing equipment.

In underwater connector technology, the application of this approach enables key requirements, such as: correct connector selection for the application; CAPEX/OPEX models; the importance of qualification of new products coupled with field experience; the realization of the value of service and support; the necessity for reduction in size, weight and costs of equipment and the subsequent development of new solutions, to not only be examined in isolation but be combined with information and experiences from all sectors of the industry. This contributes to a greater overall understanding and leads to the technical innovations associated with the refinement of existing products in combination with the development of new products.

Industry Sectors

The industry sectors within with the offshore Oil and Gas Industry are vast and when coupled with the overlap into Geophysical and Naval sectors can form an extensive list. In order to understand the extent of these sectors examples are provided below, along with their key connector system design parameters:

  • ROV Industry: Within the ROV industry there is the growing need for smaller size in deeper waters together with the need for high connector contact densities at lower-costs. Key connector system design parameters: small size, deepwater depth, high contact densities, and low-cost.

  • Drilling Industry: Within the drilling industry there is the need to maintain drilling 'up-time' while meeting the extreme operating conditions of the connectors and cable terminations used. Key connector system design parameters: field installable and testable, reliability and robustness.

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