Condition monitoring prevents costly shutdown of oil pump line at BP Azerbaijan
Remote monitoring of rotating machinery using GE’s Bently Nevada System 1 condition monitoring and diagnostics platform has helped BP in Azerbaijan to prevent the unnecessary shutdown of main oil pumps, flash gas compressors and other critical units by predicting and notifying early deterioration and unit condition changes.
A shutdown could have led to production losses of $25,000 to $50,000 per hour. In addition, the continued support provided by the GE service team, together with the efforts of the rotating machinery engineers over the past five years in delivering high-quality condition monitoring and timely advice to prevent failures, has resulted in the Azerbaijan team winning BP’s regional 2010 Knowledge Management engineering award.
GE’s Bently Nevada service team in Azerbaijan has provided operation and maintenance services to BP Azerbaijan for the past five years. These services help BP Azerbaijan to increase production and cut costs by monitoring the condition of rotating machinery, and cover six oil and gas platforms, one oil terminal and four pumping stations, two of which are located in Georgia.
In 2010, an upgraded version of the web interface tool was installed and this allows GE’s remotely-sited engineers to track any new alarms directly, produce a customer notification as an exception report for action on site and store the information in the web portal. At the same time, significant work was carried out on the optimisation of early indication alarm levels, and multiple custom rules were developed for the mitigation of nuisance alarms.
One of the benefits of the comprehensive condition monitoring system was demonstrated when alarms were triggered on the power turbine bearing of the main oil line pump at one of the Georgia pumping stations. These pumping stations are part of the line that pumps oil from Azerbaijan to Turkey, and any shutdown is extremely expensive. The vibration parameters of these main oil line (MOL) pumps are monitored and protected using the Bently Nevada 1701 system.
The triggered alarms were first investigated remotely by a Bently Nevada service engineer in Baku and an exception report with recommendations was issued and sent to the Georgia team. The source of the problem was identified as a faulty instrumentation and appropriate checks were recommended. Corrective action was then taken at the station, all vibration indications disappeared and the problem was confirmed as a false instrumentation alarm.
The expertise of GE’s service team, together with the efforts of the rotating machinery engineers, has been duly recognised with their winning the Knowledge Management award at the AGT region 2010 Engineering Awards function.