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Undeniable Benefits of Level Monitoring in the Oil and Gas Sector

The Internet of Things can add automation, analytics and cognition capabilities to a connected industrial infrastructure, helping companies enhance their revenue streams.
By Sanjeev Verma

Improved Operational Efficiency:
Plant efficiency and operational excellence are among the essential factors that affect the production rate and quality of products in any industry. At oil refineries, even a small change in efficiency can make a massive difference in optimum resource utilization, cost reduction or meeting regulatory compliance.

A level-monitoring solution, along with other IoT-based systems, can drastically boost the operational excellence of an oil and gas facility. The integration of specially built sensors and devices can remotely measure several parameters, like the temperature and humidity of equipment, along with fluid levels within tanks.

These parameters can be compiled via analytics systems to develop trends and patterns, based on which companies can plan their scheduled inspection and maintenance tasks. This data can also be analyzed via data-processing systems, as well as artificial-intelligence and machine-learning algorithms, to automate processes and conduct predictive maintenance.

Tank Farm Management:
This is the most common application of IoT-based level monitoring in the oil and gas industry. Oil refineries require numerous tanks of varying sizes to store their refined petroleum products. The volume of liquid that these cylindrical tanks store can range from 5,000 to 16 million gallons. They are the backbone of oil and gas companies, as they help to maintain a buffer stock and prepare for a sudden change in supply-and-demand conditions in the market.

Managing a large farm is not an easy feat to achieve. Various parameters need to be read and continuously watched to make sure that the quality of stored products do not change. Along with the amount of fuel in these tanks, a tank level monitoring system can measure parameters like temperature and humidity.

Real-time alerting enabled by the IoT allows oil companies to gain alerts whenever a particular variable crosses pre-determined threshold limits. This can help them focus on other essential tasks, while leaving tank-inspection tasks to the IoT system.

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