Petrochina uses RFID tags to track underground pipes

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The Sinopec Group Shengli Oilfield used the RFID tag provided by Victorysoft in the field test, to track the downhole pipeline in the ground oil field. This is believed to be the first time in the oil and gas industry to apply this type of UHF RFID technology. The project uses RFID-tracked drill pipes and RFID handheld readers and software provided by Victorysoft to track 1380 drill pipes in 7 well points. The pilot work took 3 months or so, and each wells reached about 2500 meters depth. In the latter stage of work, when the downhole pipeline through the RFID tag, the central control antenna will read the information on the label. As a result of the pilot’s success, the Shengli oilfield may use the label in more drill string in the future.

Until then, the methods used to manage their drilling pipelines in Shengli oilfields were inefficient. These pipelines were manually computed whatever before and after the drilling process, which leaded to inaccurate and inefficient use of inventory-managed assets, and even potential security risks. This task could not have been accomplished before using RFID, which is, tracking and capturing data on a single pipe. With the advent of tracking technology, the ability of a single joint of the drill pipe provides the possibility of improving file and process efficiency, not only saving costs but also reducing risk.

Xplorer is a patent-pending UHF RFID tag that is built with high-strength steel and polymers, and is designed to be embedded in a hole in the drill seam to track each individual pipe. Xplorer is the world’s first metal, UHF and certified RFID tag, designed to survive under extreme downhole conditions. Regulatory requirements, weather and operating conditions make China’s oilfields one of the most challenging asset management environments. In the release operation, the drill pipe is exposed to high temperature, extreme pressure and vibration, and chemical corrosion. RFID tags are structured to withstand downhole conditions reliably when the pressure reaches 2000. Tags are linked to data, including ID numbers, steel numbers, size and weight, production information, final use information, asset maintenance records, and other important information.The stored information is transmitted to the Victorysoft tracking system.

Xplorer, developed in collaboration with oil and gas companies, is designed to provide a simple and accurate way for drillers to identify up to 5 feet of drilling pipelines electronically, within the distance and range of the well.This is the basis for a platform that reduces human error, ensures that the correct pipeline is deployed, collects and records data, uses advanced analysis, automates piping records, directs electronic on-site inspections, and many valuable tasks related to oil field operations.

Handheld RFID readers enable workers to get critical information before and after scanning all of the drill pipes, and when they need to be cleaned up and maintained, or when the drill pipe is scrapped, the information will be visible in time. This reduces the occurrence of leaks and rupture accidents. By collecting these raw data in a timely manner, managers can use the data to make quick and accurate decisions on the spot.


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