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Computer-Controlled Petroleum Production Systems

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2 Author(s)
Block, Wallace E. ; Standard Oil Company of California, Western Operations, Inc. ; Bodine, James A.

Use of computer control in the operation of production facilities has expanded rapidly in the past few years. Standard Oil Company of California completed its lastest such project, the automation of platforms Hope and Heidi in the Santa Barbara Channel, in mid 1967. The equipment, which uses an 8K computer control program together with a supervisory control system, permits unattended operation of the remote facilities. This paper discusses the project design details, startup, and operating history, emphasizing both hardware and software aspects of the system. Two unique operating routines, computed well-test sequences, and leak detection to test manifolds, are discussed in detail. Based on the Hope-Heidi experience and background from previous projects of a similar nature, the authors discuss their philosophy of automation. The needs for user and vendor coordination of their system responsibilities and thorough documentation are defined. Emphasis is placed on the advisability of forming a user hardware-software team to handle system engineering and programming "in-house." Particular importance is placed on the specification phase of a process-control project and the need to extract detailed technical data from the vendors in the bidding phase to ensure optimum and economic selection of a system to do a particular job. The discussion of software specifications and the concept of a user team to implement the project should prove useful to the oil producing industry. The concepts discussed are, however, applicable to the implementation of any industry's computer control program.

Published in:

Industry and General Applications, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:IGA-5 ,  Issue: 4 )