Service company and operator personnel increasingly wish to monitor coiled tubing (CT) operations from a remote location. Very often the interested party will connect to the data logging computer in the field via an internet connection using freely available commercial software, which allows them to view the computer screen as it appears to the personnel on location. However, streaming video in this manner requires a fast and reliable connection. It also leaves the viewer in a predominantly passive role, with the burden of running the software remaining with the personnel in the CT unit, who must therefore be trained to handle that task along with their other duties.
A different approach, first introduced to the CT industry in 2015, involves streaming the acquired job data to a remote web server in small packets, and reconstructing the complete data file on arrival. The data can then be viewed in near real-time by any authorized person with an internet connection and a browser. The method requires little bandwidth, and works even with an intermittent connection. In a further innovation, the live data is simultaneously fed into tubing forces analysis (TFA) and fatigue modeling software running on the same web server, with the resulting real-time pipe status displayed in the browser alongside the data charts. Adjustments to the models and job design can be made by a person observing the job remotely, rather than on location, with potential for significant cost savings.
At the same time, an algorithm monitors the incoming data stream for detectable events, and triggers automated notifications to personnel who are ‘following’ the job. In this manner an operator can be alerted when, for example, the CT approaches a target of interest; a technician can be warned that a sensor is failing; and an engineer can be alerted if the pipe limits are in danger of being exceeded.
This web-based system has been used extensively over a period of several years, with up to 50 jobs streaming on a typical day. Field examples will be presented illustrating this technology, and contrasted with conventional methods. Limitations as well as advantages will be discussed, in particular concerns about web connectivity at the wellsite, and possible solutions presented.
The case will be made that, by moving the majority of the job monitoring process offsite, the need for specialist expertise in the field is reduced, with associated cost savings. Furthermore, by integrating the entire job process, from planning to completion, into a single web-based platform accessible to any involved party regardless of geographic location, numerous possibilities for other efficiencies can be imagined and realized.