SMART ITEMS BUSINESS FORUM (SIBF) WORKING
GROUP: OCTOBER 27, 2003
NETWORKS IN THE PETROLEUM INDUSTRY:
A TECHNOLOGICALLY VIABLE PATH . . . OR JUST HYPE?""
Invitation only. Further information below.
View Mike Bean's Presentations below:
Battlefield and BP (9.1MB .pdf)
Trial Results - July 2002 (760kb .pdf)
BP Processes Using Sensory Networks (14MB .pdf)
Wireless Data Overview
To view SUMMARY click Here
In the second session in a three-part series on commercial usage
of sensor nets, this Smart Items Business Forum Working Group will
focus on the viability of battery-based, low-powered radios in supporting
communication for industrial control applications within the petroleum
The academic and industrial research area of Sensor Networks covers
a wide range of technology issues. One outgrowth of this research
is commercial short-range battery-powered radios that can provide
low-bandwidth data streams across multiple nodes of an ad-hoc network.
This technology approach has an obvious contribution when conventional
communication structures are not possible, for example on battlefields
and on the surface of Mars. Some proponents of this technology have
argued that it can greatly reduce the cost of providing data connectivity
in industrial control situations. If data connectivity is substantially
cheaper, then it should open up more sensor and control applications
that can lead to overall process savings, improved reliability,
reduced emissions, and so forth. Around these new control and monitoring
applications new business processes will be needed and new enterprise-scale
Petroleum processing and distribution is an example of a high
value industry that has processing plants and pipelines spread over
large geographical areas in very harsh environments. The cost of
providing data connectivity is considered very high. This Working
Group session will focus on the technology requirements for out-door
control and monitoring capabilities in the oil industry.
The Working Group will address three major areas:
1. What are the characteristics of modern, current data communication
and industrial control technologies used in refineries and along
- What level of reliability is required and under what operating
- What are the minimum and maximum temperature conditions? -
What are the design parameters for electrical noise and lightening
- What are the constraints on operating electronic devices in
corrosive and combustible environments?
- Which technologies (e.g. dedicated copper, fiber optic, data-over-power
wiring, or radio) are successfully used for data communication
in these environments?
- What are the approximate costs and limitations of existing
- What are the regulatory requirements for electronic technology
deployed in these environments?
2. If there were a dramatic cost reduction in providing safe, reliable
data communication for petroleum industry environments, then how
would it be deployed?
- Would it simply replace existing methods in new construction
or would there be new applications with significant economic value?
- What are these potential new control and monitoring applications?
3. What developments of existing sensor net data communications
technology would be needed for deployment in oil industry environments?
- Are short range (~10M), battery-powered radios applicable for
- What advantages and drawbacks would come from an ad hoc radio
- What are the most promising radio technologies (e.g. Wi-Fi,
BlueTooth, 802.15.4, other)?
We expect to have several contributors from the petroleum industry
- experts in industrial controls - share their knowledge of what
is used today and what the industry needs. Working Group participants
will discuss the viability of current technologies, as well as the
benefits to the petroleum industry resulting from the deployment
of radio-based sensor nets.
Note: In order to keep the discussion focused on potential new
applications and data sources, we will exclude certain relatively
established applications and technologies. For example, applications
of transponders and geographical location and tracking technology
have been covered widely in the marketplace.
To register for this SIBF Working Group, please submit your name,
title, telephone number, and a short bio to:
Dr. Susan J. Duggan
Chief Executive Officer
Silicon Valley World Internet Center
There is no fee to attend, however, as this in an invitation-only
session limited to 18 participants, the commitment to participate
is strongly requested.