BHGE launches advanced methane detection and reduction system

Lumen1At its 20th annual meeting in Florence, Italy, BHGE launched a new digital integrated platform, LUMEN, which provides continuous methane monitoring for oil and gas operators using both wireless ground-based and aerial drone-based technology

“Methane leak detection is one of the most pressing needs in the oil and gas industry, and we believe LUMEN is a game-changer for highly-effective methane emission monitoring,” said Diarmaid Mulholland, CEO of BHGE’s Measurement & Sensing business.

“Using advanced sensors and industrial software, LUMEN helps operators to protect the environment by detecting harmful methane leaks, and by using advanced data analysis, this technology helps to identify and reduce emissions while also increasing safety for operators. The applications within oil and gas are just the beginning,” he added.

The platform includes a full-suite of methane monitoring and inspection solutions capable of streaming live data from sensors to a cloud-based software dashboard for real-time results. The platform consists of two seamlessly connected formats–a ground-based solar-powered wireless sensor network, and a drone-based system for aerial monitoring–ensuring methane emissions are monitored as efficiently and accurately as possible.

Innovative monitoring strategies like LUMEN go beyond meeting safety and regulatory requirements–which remain extremely important - and can also help increase operational efficiencies, reduce costs and minimise pollutants for customers globally. The technology can also be used to help operators quantify any actions they have taken to reduce their carbon footprint.

Speaking to Oil Review Middle East Glen Parkes, the company’s general manager, Sensor Solutions commented that while the initial drive behind the development of the platform was conformity with US emissions regulations, it is now the industry and corporate governance rather than regulation that is driving it.

“This is a really interesting turn of events in the last 12 months or so,” he remarked, adding that it has been three years in development and has attracted interest from operators worldwide.

LUMEN’s ground-based sensor system, LUMEN TERRAIN, is a solar-powered, wireless system that creates a “digital mesh” network around a facility, outdoors and indoors. BHGE can also take LUMEN SKY airborne with an integrated, multi-faceted UAV system using a state of the art, a combination of TDLAS and OGI technologies, along with high-definition aerial video streaming for unmatched data visualisation.

Using proprietary algorithms and machine learning, data, LUMEN provides methane concentration data (PPM), as well as the location and rate of the leak, and gives trend analysis. The data is available in real-time at the touch of a button via a computer or smartphone, giving operators the ability to make quicker, more reliable decisions for their operations. Customers can set their own emissions thresholds which can be configured for each site and have full visibility of their sites, being able to see instantly when a problem occurs.

“The next phase we’re working on is predictive analytics, so with machine learning, we can predict where leaks could occur,” noted Parkes.

The platform is one of the innovative technologies showcased at the BHGE Annual Meeting, where emissions reduction and decarbonisation were a strong theme, and where BHGE announced its own commitment to reduce its CO2 equivalent (eq.) emissions 50 per cent by 2030, achieving net-zero CO2 eq. emissions by 2050.

The event brought together more than 1,000 senior oil and gas leaders and energy ministers from around the world to discuss and debate the latest trends and challenges facing the sector.

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