Streamlining Field Operations Using Cenozon’s FIND: Steel Reef Leverages Innovative Mobile Technology To Boost Pipeline Risk Management
Steel Reef’s Story
Steel Reef manages midstream oil and gas infrastructure in Saskatchewan and the U.S. Among their responsibilities is to ensure hydrocarbons are safely captured, processed and transported in pipelines and facilities. In order to accomplish this efficiently with good ESG ratings, Steel Reef has adopted a unique ethos. Its corporate culture enables and encourages individual creativity, communication and entrepreneurial excitement across the board.
Steel Reef values the use innovative technologies to keep operations safe, profitable and transparent. So, in 2018, when Pipeline Team Lead Parker Cameron took the initiative to field-try Cenozon’s FIND for their pipeline pigging and pipeline crossing logging/management to deal with paper form-based data collection issues, he was following the Steel Reef corporate vision. Parker justified his choice of FIND by saying, “we had everything on spreadsheets and paper copies. We wanted to get to something that was a lot more secure and easier to track the ability to send our pigs down the line for logging purposes and knowledge purposes for all our operators”.
One of the hallmarks of Cenozon’s FIND app is its ease of use. It enabled Parker’s field crew to install it on their smartphones/tablets effortlessly and start using it intuitively. They needed virtually no training, as the app has Google Maps type functionality with its configured data containing familiar satellite image backgrounds and roads and place names of Google Maps.
This familiar functionality on the familiar devices quickly won over the most reluctant of Steel Reef’s field team members. Soon, all of Parker’s team had FIND on their smartphones. Moreover, they had access to Steel Reef’s own asset data — its wells, pipelines and facilities are downloaded separately to the devices, so that field staff can have the liberty to continue to make data updates locally in the field where there is no Wi-Fi. Once Wi-Fi becomes available, data syncs can be made to the global database automatically.
FIND has revolutionized Steel Reef’s field operations. Gone are the days they were dependent on cumbersome, unverified, insecure, handwritten paper records and spreadsheet which nobody could find when they were needed. Instead. the product has the potential of becoming the single secure repository of all field data, such as Steel Reef’s pigging logs and pipeline crossing information. Data capture for them involved driving to each asset to create a map feature and its associated record which Parker’s men recorded easily. Integrated data allowed timely and accurate holistic visualization, analysis and reporting to operations, management and regulators alike.
To maintain pipeline infrastructure such that it stays clean and damage free, Steel Reef uses maintenance pigging to periodically maintain their pipelines. This generates large volumes of data as records are maintained from where the pig is launched to where it is received in the pipeline. Of paramount importance is the pig’s location and timing.
Before FIND, such records were manually captured and maintained. Paper records were filed and were difficult to retrieve in the future. Parker walked us through how effortlessly his team now logs pigs with FIND, “the guys have it all on their phones. They pull up to site. Say they sent a pig and it is all time stamped. Then they go to the receiver end and that is also all time stamped. Everyone is bought in fully into it.”
Time stamped data for each launch became automatically available and properly managed digitally. This allowed Steel Reef operations and management alike to see the status of the whole pigging operations in real time. They could see what part of the pipeline infrastructure had pigs in transit, which were on schedule and which were behind schedule through an intuitive colour coded map display. For the first time, they saw pigging results on screen allowing them to properly manage risk by scheduling all the pigs so that Steel Reef was able to have foolproof daily pigging plans.
In the future, Parker wants to capture and manage all field data using FIND. “Everything to do with the field will be in one place — on this app. We do not want five different programs running on three different guys’ tablets”, he qualified. Furthermore, they want to use FIND for many more field applications like signage surveys, water crossing surveys and documenting safety checks, near misses and incidents. The new FIND Dashboard will automatically generate reports which summarize and present Steel Reef’s risk management indicators to management and operational management indicators to Parker in an intuitive manner.
Parker found out that technologies like FIND really enable companies like Steel Reef to live their mission and vision, espousing innovation, entrepreneurial acumen, efficiency, safety, transparent communication all in a very simple and intuitive way. In fact, when Parker was asked about his overall experience with FIND he blurted out “it’s been super easy!”
Cenozon empowers oil and gas companies to achieve optimal operational efficiency by providing market-leading software solutions and superior customer service. Learn more by visiting https://www.cenozon.com/solutions/pipeline-integrity/find/
Cenozon proudly offers a robust suite of pipeline software solutions, including our flagship Pipeline Integrity Risk Management software, which monitors more than 25 per cent of Western Canada’s pipelines, and is now expanding for use by companies across North America.
- Digital / IT