ADIPEC 2017 show interview: Huawei

Alaa Elshimy, managing director and vice president, enterprise business, Middle East, Huawei, says digitalisation helps perform the most crucial operational function, the tracking of assets.

Alaa Elshimy, managing director and vice president, enterprise business,  Middle East, Huawei.
Alaa Elshimy, managing director and vice president, enterprise business, Middle East, Huawei.

What are you displaying at ADIPEC this year?

Huawei has two business lines. One line is to do directly with the industry – we have solutions for the upstream, midstream, and downstream sectors. We have another business line that is technology-related – that focuses on data centres, high-performance computing, data storage, and the other building blocks of ICT technology. Talking about upstream, we co-develop a number of devices with our partners.

We have completed our testing and certification exercise with Schlumberger. We have scored the highest marks in that competition. We now have Schlumberger’s software on reservoir simulation running on our high-performance computing system.

In the digital ecosystem, in particular, we have developed a switch that can connect to all the sensors in a well – pressure, temperature, and other aspects. It is web-based, so you can access it from your computer, mobile phones, tablets, and so on – it offers you that mobility. The switch will connect all the sensors and will collect the data. 

We have developed a mobile phone sim card-like chip that’s integrated with the switch, and LTE communication network-enabled. All the information you are collecting from the wells can be sent to the command/data centre, wherever that may be. 

The speciality of our data centres is that it all come custom-made to your requirements, and all you need to is ‘plug and play’. It is also mobile, so if tomorrow if you want to shut a certain field, you can lift and transport it somewhere else.

How does Huawei guarantee the efficiency of its solutions in remote areas like offshore platforms? Aren’t web-based ICT systems vulnerable to the factor of connectivity?

It is exactly the opposite, because in remote locations we don’t leverage the normal web connectivity that you get from mobile operators. We provide a private network that is designed to survive in such environments. It is purpose-built. 

We have co-developed a device with Honeywell for harsh environments for gas detectors. This gas detector starts to beep once it detects gas. But sometimes it’s too late. How will your command centre respond if the notification is delayed in the event of a gas leakage? The device we have developed has a sim card inserted into it. The moment it senses gas, immediately on-field supervisors and everyone concerned will be aware that there is a gas leakage and where the exact location is. It is a complete, purpose-built communication system.

What work is Huawei currently carrying out with its oil and gas operator clients in the Middle East region?

We have official references with Aramco, ADMA-OPCO, and with all major players in the region. Globally, almost 70% of the top 20 oil and gas companies are Huawei’s customers.

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