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O&G - Power BI for Alarms

North Sea Oil & Gas producer uses Intelligent Plant Power BI connector and Alarm Analysis to reach gold standard in Alarm Management.

In a continued effort to improve the safety, reliability and compliance of its offshore assets, a North Sea Oil and Gas Company launched a program of work to improve the Alarm Monitoring Systems on one of its Platforms.

The Platform already had some Alarm Monitoring solutions in place but over time they had degraded, not been updated to keep up with other control system improvements and as such did not deliver on their full potential.

Intelligent Plant (IP) was already supplying Alarm Management reports on a subscription basis for a different Platform which were shown to the HSE who advised that they would fulfil best practise if employed on others.


The Oil Company wanted a system that could be used at corporate level. Traditional Alarm reporting systems typically reside firmly in the operations area, used by control room personnel on an adhoc basis. The Oil Company wanted to explore the possibility of producing a simple to understand dashboard system for all its assets that could be accessed, read and understood by anyone in the business.

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"The adequate management of alarms continues to be a poorly addressed issue across all industries. The Oil Company are to be commended for the thoroughness and enthusiasm that they have brought to bear in ensuring that their assets are properly monitored and any bad actors promptly investigated and rectified" - Bruce Nicolson, Principal Control Systems Engineer, Intelligent Plant.

Intelligent Plant's Alarm Analysis (AA) software sits in the Industrial App Store. The Industrial App Store is an online shop window and secure data sharing portal that allows registered companies to provide a service that requires secure access to their client’s process data over the internet via an app they develop that is hosted in the cloud.


All that is required to provide the App access to the data is the installation of IP’s App Store Connect software. The data is then available for its owner to decide which Apps have permission to use it. Crucially, the data stays within the client’s control and is not copied to the cloud.


IP confirmed with the Oil Company that their App Store Connect software could be quickly and easily deployed at reasonable cost. Once the software was deployed and initial data gathered. It became apparent that due to the message structure on the Platform many alarms were being counted that were actually shelved at the time. AA can easily be configured to account for this, and the new results, unsurprisingly, showed a dramatic improvement. AA’s detailed analysis pages then highlighted behaviour on the top twenty Bad Actors where further improvements could be made, which were then implemented.

"The recent explosion of data visualisation tools on the market today reinforces the technical requirement to get access to process data in an intelligent and secure manner. Intelligent Plant continues to create software tools to address this growing problem and our Power BI connector is just one such product." - Steve Aitken, Founder, Intelligent Plant.

IP’s Alarm Analysis has now been deployed across all of the Company's North Sea assets, and has facilitated improvements in alarm rates across the board, to the point that the company recently reached the gold standard of <1 alarm per ten minutes on each of their assets. The Company is now committed to monitoring the KPIs at corporate level. IP have also installed their Power BI interface so Alarm KPIs can be integrated with other corporate dashboards. As well as making the platforms safer to work on and the control rooms less stressful to work in, improvements in production efficiency have been seen to correlate with the reduced number of alarms.

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