AR Tech Implemented by Health & Safety Innovators Makes Downstream Operations Safer & Easier to Manage



Safety is key

Billions of dollars are spent each year developing the booming oil & gas fields dotting the North American landscape. A large percentage of these funds are dedicated to maintaining the safety of both the employees and the assets that are the backbone of the energy industry.

For decades, efficiencies, expertise and know-how have been shared in the oilfield to help make jobs safer and more profitable. But one of the most consistent challenges in the industry has always been managing the communication gaps that naturally occur when office headquarters, financial centers and field operations are spread across different locations.

Ondaka has taken this age-old problem and solved it with technology developed in the heart of Silicon Valley. Ondaka’s technology allow oilfield clients to seamlessly and effectively communicate detailed, location-specific asset understanding through advances in desktop virtual reality and machine learning that are shared with stakeholders, employees and contractors anywhere in the world.


Capturing the Data

Oilfield equipment, service manuals, personnel logs, permit documentation, safety procedures and land records are all essential cogs of daily operations.  Unfortunately, there are few systems (if any) that can capture all of this layered information, store it in one centralized location and deliver an easily accessible user interface.  As a result, field records are often stored in local offices, SCADA and IOT data are usually recorded in control rooms, financial/acquisition records tend to be filed at HQ, and equipment documentation can be located virtually anywhere.

A leading downstream EH&S consulting firm challenged Ondaka to help centralize their client’s asset data and to significantly reduce the time needed by their client to access this critical information. Ondaka deployed their innovative SiteviewTM data visualization technology that:

  1. Leverages computer vision to automate the identification of assets (down to component level detail);
  2. Utilizes proprietary machine learning to automate the identification and acquisition of associated digital files and content;
  3. Associates both asset images and the corresponding content in high resolution desktop VR.

Ondaka’s industry leading technology stiches together hi-resolution drone images of assets and locations and uses proprietary Artificial Intelligence to create an interactive vault of virtual resources that dramatically improve organizational learning and communication. The EH&S firm has now delivered an interactive virtual reality inventory of assets and EHS data that is available on-demand accessible by both clients and contractors in seconds.


Turnkey Visual Communication

As part of this process, Ondaka quickly learned that effective data mapping and intuitive understanding is critical for success. The more information that’s available, the better the “intelligence” developed by the algorithm. And the more intuitive and visual the user experience, the easier it is for client team members to find and use critical EHS documents and procedures.  The EH&S client now had a platform that allowed them to:

Train: New employees are able to take interactive AR tours of actual facilities, equipment and processes without ever having to prematurely face the safety or security risks of a new operating environment. These new employees receive “hands-on” equipment and safety training from their laptops, tablets and other smart-devices. They’re able to walk through an entire facility and examine its parameters down to the smallest nuts and bolts. Layered information allows them to explore service manuals and safety procedures instantly. This new procedure adds a new element of safety and value for the client.

Remote Smart-Monitoring: The best safety and maintenance plans are the ones that prevent issues before they happen. Ondaka’s AI technology is constantly processing information. Hi-res photography from UAVs, laser scans, and even ground photography from employee cellphones identifies changes and runs real-time analysis that communicates with the end user across any connected location. Backend data libraries are queried automatically to provide strategic examination of issues to all affected parties simultaneously.

Be-first: As leading EH&S organizations in the country, Ondaka’s clients are always looking at ways to implement best practice in health and safety. It’s rare that a single platform like Ondaka’s can adjust to meet the needs of multiple client types across the oil and gas spectrum, but Ondaka’s proprietary technology learns from client behavior and continuously updates across multiple platforms. For example, in providing safety for a refinery – all aspects of emergency response, asset maintenance and operational management are able to share data and create efficiencies that minimize risk, improve compliance, and double-up on safety.

Eyes on the prize: For visual learners, the ability to view a job in its natural environment is paramount. With Ondaka technology, cell phones, tablets and desktops navigate and contextualize department-specific databases with ease, allowing all interested parties to view and discuss asset and equipment-level issues in real-time while actually “walking through” the process without ever leaving the office. This particular EH&S company can now take investors and inspectors alike on a facility tours in AR using Ondaka’s digital framework as the virtual host.


Maintaining Momentum

An upfront investment of time is required to make this sort of technology work. However, once the information is in, the time-savings on current and future management are greatly enhanced. This allows companies to strategically allocate their safety budgets in a manner that shows immediate benefits, compounds ROI and reliably delivers payback of less than 8 months.   The fundamental components to a successful EH&S program are communication and timeliness. When implemented correctly, they correlate into fewer incidents and overall cost savings. Ondaka’s software is built on these fundamental principles. Who’d have imagined that Augmented Reality developed in Silicon Valley would build out the digital backbone of the virtual oilfield?

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