Digital Twin for Structure Monitoring

Oil And Energy

Digital twin for structure monitoring

The Need

More control over their subsea oil extractions, to better protect these expensive offshore facilities.

Creating a digital twin for structure monitoring of a subsea installation was a highly complex and intricate project requiring multiple BlueThink experts. The client needed more control over their subsea oil extractions, to better protect these expensive offshore facilities. With the cost of infrastructure so high, it was vital to minimise any operations that added time to the deployment. They also wanted to reduce the need for costly and time-consuming recovery actions in the event of any damage.

Closer monitoring of the structural conditions and control of fatigue stress on the installation from sea current fluctuations were important. Finding the right combination of effective technologies to cope with the extreme operating conditions was challenging. The project team had to consider some fairly unique limitations like adverse climate changes and extreme ocean depths.

Digital twin for structure monitoring

The Solution

Development focused on mechanical, electronic and algorithmic activity.

Due to the complex multi-faceted nature of this project, it was broken down into smaller subsets of activity. The three main branches of development focused on mechanical, electronic and algorithmic activity.

To maintain an agile approach to the complex development, the team made use of more complete prototypes and simulations. Firstly, simplified models were built to validate the electrical and mechanical solutions.

Secondly, optical transmission experiments were designed using a test tank to replicate the physical conditions of the marine environment.

Finally, all the parts were integrated into engineering models for testing in the lab and field. The fatigue state reconstruction algorithm was then tested and refined by building a scale model of the installation.

The Result

An efficient system that would safeguard and monitor their offshore installations remotely.

Creating a digital twin for structure monitoring in the subsea environment was a greater challenge than first expected. The project involved a complex combination of technologies that needed to work together. The end result provided the client with an efficient system that would safeguard and monitor their offshore installations remotely.

The solution comprised daisy-chain monitoring modules hosting electronic sensors, housed in high pressure resistant cases suitable for the subsea environment. These modules were equipped with laser communication systems collecting and sending data to an IoT frame, creating a digital twin.

Working through the solution also enabled the client to improve overall logistics processes, resulting in additional time and cost savings.

The project team included mechanical and electronics engineers, and a certified PMP project manager. The Solvers Network were also engaged to evaluate the technologies and source appropriate suppliers already existing in other sectors.

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