Drones have been making their inroads into many different industries, one of which is the oil and gas industry. Today, BP said that the company is launching a new system of gas cloud imaging drones to monitor and help reduce methane emissions.

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Drones to monitor methane emissions

Jordan Blum writes for the Houston Chronicle:

The British energy major said it will deploy a system of continuous measurement of methane emissions for all of its new major projects worldwide and that it will use frequent drone flights to detect methane emissions…

The continuous measurement on new projects, including technology called gas cloud imaging, has been pilot tested and installed at BP’s giant natural gas Khazzan field in Oman.

With all these new technologies, inspections that used to take seven days will now only take 30 minutes, BP said.

While BP very recently rolled out drone inspections at shale wells, BP also just successfully tested drone monitoring at its Clair oilfield in the North Sea.

Using advanced sensor technology originally designed by NASA for the Mars Curiosity Rover with a fixed-wing drone, BP said it broke the UK’s record for the longest commercial drone flight. The specialty drone system will monitor all of BP’s North Sea sites in 2020.

BP said the drone flights identity the source and size of methane leaks and issue work orders to fix them.

You can read the entire article here.

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Photo: BP Florida manager Kourtney Hardwick eyes a Colorado methane gas well in 2009. The EPA has lowered its estimates of methane releases during production. Jerry McBride, FRE


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