In advance of the Annual Permian Basin Artificial Lift & Production Optimization 2019 conference Leslie Malone, Well Work & Well Optimization manager and Lucas Green, operations center team lead from Sanchez Oil & Gas conducted the brief interview below:
Q: As E&Ps move towards fully automating their well sites, including all production and surface facilities implemented on-site, how is Sanchez preparing to embrace this change?
Over the year, we have begun moving down the road in deploying fully automated operations. Utilizing mesh communications technology, we aim to minimize man power and maximize efficiency by deploying assets only when necessary. From edge computing to drones and high definition video, we anticipate daily operations to experience a significant transformation in the coming months and years.
Q: Are you at Sanchez starting to see the true value of automation/Machine Learning?
We are realizing the value in drilling and completions operations. In In production operations, we are in the process of building the tools and infrastructure to take advantage of SME knowledge in model training and machine learning. At present, we are realizing impactful results rooted in the wellhead data pattern recognition enabling automated well issue identification and work order creation.
Q: This time last year, operators were very much fixated on price—from what we’re hearing now, some operators are prepared to pay a premium for better performance. Is that really true?
We are still interested in the fit for purpose, proper tool use that meets the needs of the business. The cost of operations per BOE remains the focus as we develop custom applications and use of emerging technology to improve operational efficiencies and deliver optimized production with minimal man power.
Q: I have heard that Sanchez has an exceptional story to tell at the conference—without giving too much away at this point, what should kind of, solutions should we say, can delegates look forward to taking away from your session at the conference?
Sanchez is continually embracing in-house custom application development that provides business insights, automated workflows and operational efficiencies to manage a growing well count with minimum staffing. These efforts have resulted in substantially lower software costs and implementation times for programs critical to daily operations, reporting and advanced analytics.
Q: The 2019 agenda/speaker line-up is covering more areas than previous years—what are you most interested in learning about and from whom?
We are looking forward to hearing how industry peers of all sizes are applying these technologies and the types of transformation foreseen as a result.
Q: Finally, why in your opinions should the industry be seen at the 2019 conference?
With the industry in the midst of major operational transformations and integrating disciplines new to most operators, we believe preparation and implementation planning are critical aspects in value creation and remaining competitive industry wide, particularly in regard to E&P enterprises.