Virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR) are two popular, emerging digital technologies that offer users unique experiences. Both involve digital information being presented to users in unique ways. Virtual reality involves users being isolated from the real world and immersed in an interactive computer-generated world. In contrast, augmented reality involves the real world being supplemented with computer-generated images or audio. With so much buzz around AR and VR, many people wonder how these technologies impact the oil and gas industry. This article explains what augmented reality is and how it impacts the oil and gas industry, as well as its potential limitations for this sector.
Augmented reality, or AR, is the integration of digital elements into a user’s view of the real world. While virtual reality replaces the real world with a simulated environment, AR supplements the real world with computer-generated visuals, sounds, or other information. In the oil and gas industry, AR could be used to provide workers with visualizations of data and results from tests run on equipment, such as sensors or production units. It could also be used to overlay 3D models of equipment or oil fields on top of a worker’s view of the field or area. This technology could help workers to stay safe by not having to walk through areas with toxic or explosive materials.
– Safety – AR could help workers stay safe by eliminating the need for visual inspections of equipment. For example, AR could be used to display readings from sensors that would normally require an on-site visual inspection several times per day. This would reduce the need for workers to walk into dangerous areas with sensors. AR could also be used to create overlays of 3D representations of equipment, such as valves, to avoid mistakes caused by misreading visual indicators. – Data and testing results – AR could also be used to display data, such as the results of hydrocarbon gas or oil tests. This could help workers to analyse and interpret the data more easily, while also reducing the chance of mistakes caused by misreading visual indicators. – Maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) – AR could provide instructions, maintenance schedules, and other information to workers in real time. Using AR-enabled devices, such-as smartphones or wearable AR headsets, workers could receive instructions for fixing equipment or performing other functions without having to walk to a computer or in-person instruction. – Data and analytics – AR could also be used to display analytics, including production data, well performance, and other information. This data could be displayed in a way that’s easier to interpret, allowing workers to make better decisions.
– Cost – AR technology is still relatively expensive, costing up to $100,000 per unit. This cost is significantly higher than the cost of the computer equipment needed for virtual reality, which could be as low as $3,000 per unit, depending on the equipment and level of VR capability. – Connectivity – Workers in remote locations often lack regular access to internet, which could make it challenging to use AR for data analysis or for receiving instructions for MRO tasks. – Air quality – Hazardous or toxic gases, fumes, or other airborne pollutants could limit or prevent the use of AR technology.
Virtual reality, or VR, is an experience in which users are fully isolated from the real world and immersed in a computer-generated environment. VR involves a full VR headset that completely covers the eyes and ears, blocking the real world from view, as well as hand controllers that allow users to interact with the environment. VR could have a significant impact on the oil and gas industry by allowing users to experience a simulated version of the industry in real time. This would allow them to save time by not having to travel to visit a field, and experience results and data in a much shorter timeframe than usual.
Augmented reality oil and gas could have a significant impact on the oil and gas industry by helping workers to stay safe, receive visualizations of data, and make better decisions based on analytics. Virtual reality could have an even greater impact on the industry due to its immersive nature. Both technologies could save time and money for workers and companies in the oil and gas industry.