The New Oil & Gas Tech Center: an intersection of know-how
Hi, my name is Jeremy, and I’m a senior mechanical engineer at the GE Global Research Center in New York. My job is to figure out which new technologies will change the way the world recovers Oil & Gas, and mobilize Global Research teams to make it happen.
Life at Global Research is incredibly exciting because so many people around here are working in a technology area that they love. So here you have innovative ideas coming to light from all kinds of different angles such as mechanical design, electrical engineering, materials, and turbomachinery. In the end, researchers need to understand how products really work in the field. This is a key element to inventing high-impact products—and close connection with GE business is vital.
A great example of this is GE Artificial Lift. Acquired in 2011, Artificial Lift has jumped at the opportunity to bring GE technologies into their products. And there are lots of opportunities to do that.
The gas turbines, steam turbines, jet engines, and pumps that we make across our Aviation and Energy businesses provide countless turbomachinery technologies for Artificial Lift. The valving and sealing that has to be done with sand trapped under huge pressures brings a whole other level of coating technologies to the table for Artificial Lift. The ultra-reliable alternators that have to pass FAA certification at very high temperatures before they are installed on jet engines teaches GE how to improve the motors we make for artificial lift.
What’s great about trading technologies between businesses is that ideas and technologies flow in both directions. Right now, there is a huge effort to bring a collection of advanced monitoring and diagnostic tools together to add value to Artificial Lift assets. This “big data” architecture is looking like the right framework to use in other parts of GE Oil & Gas as well.
Pretty soon, the customers who use GE turbomachines from Nuovo Pignone, Italy may use the same interface as the customers in Texas or Oklahoma to see how well their equipment is working for them, and to plan ahead for maintenance.
The hydraulic engineers in Artificial Lift have also laid the groundwork for a line of pumps that handle big streams of gas mixed with liquid, and this technology is highly sought by customers of GE businesses across Europe and the Americas.
The Oil & Gas industry is a fast moving one. People know that they have to be smart about recovering and efficiently using Petroleum, the main source of energy for the world. Mega trends show that producers have found huge amounts of petroleum in hard-to-get places, and the industry is working to make this happen with new technology—right now.
With an industry moving at high speeds, innovation must move even faster. Faster means more of the right brains focused on the right things. This is how the new Global Research Oil & Gas Technology Center will help GE deliver the world’s energy through technology.
This center will connect innovative ideas from the Research Center with product expertise from Artificial Lift, and their customers. With this intersection of know-how, GE will be able to evaluate, build, and prove more ideas faster than either of the other groups could do on their own.
The industry experts can put the best tests to work according to what they have learned in the field. The technology experts can work on inventing machines that pass those tests and this center can focus on bringing ideas to light quickly.
I think this new center will allow researchers, business and customers to work together and innovate in ways like never before. If you’re interested in learning more, view the short video below of Gary Ford, President and CEO of GE Artificial Lift. In this clip, Gary shares his thoughts around the Artificial Lift business today and the importance of working with our research centers to develop technology for the Oil and Gas industry.