Microsoft demonstrated the power and benefits of the intelligent cloud to the regional oil and gas industry, as bronze sponsor of a Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) workshop titled “Transforming Oil and Gas Towards Digital Intelligence”.
Held at the Hilton Kuwait Resort in Kuwait City, the event featured a series of keynote and case-study presentations, panel discussions and exchanges of ideas among delegates, designed to advance the use of best practices in digital transformation programmes across the region’s oil and gas sector.
Omar Saleh, Regional Director, Manufacturing and Resources, Middle East & Africa at Microsoft, and Mohamed Malek, Digital Architect at Microsoft, both delivered guidance on integrating technology solutions in the Oil & Gas industry. Omar Saleh’s keynote highlighted how technology can play a role in Transforming the Oil and Gas sector towards Digital Intelligence. And Mohamed Malek discussed the emerging technologies such as Robotics, Augmented Reality, IIOT, Automation, Digital Twins and the intelligent cloud, that are evolving the industry.
“The intelligent cloud puts digital intelligence within the reach of energy-sector decision-makers, by combining with edge devices in the field to deliver the capability of immediate actionability,” said Saleh. “Organisations become infinitely more agile when devices, software and communications technology form a contiguous ecosystem that allows seamless planning, reaction and optimisation. We are proud to demonstrate these capabilities at SPE’s oil and gas digital intelligence workshop and how these empower Oil & Gas organisations to achieve more.”
The participants also included Toufic Halabi, Manufacturing and Resources Lead at Microsoft Kuwait who represented SPE at the workshop as a steering committee member, where he was actively involved in establishing the scope and objectives of the programme, developing and determining key areas of technical sessions and held key discussions with leaders.
Microsoft has long been a leader in technology solutions for the region’s oil and gas players. Azure IoT Edge allows organisations to extend their cloud intelligence and analytics capabilities to devices in the field by offering the containerisation of cloud workloads such as Azure Cognitive Services, Machine Learning and Stream Analytics, so they run locally on devices such as Raspberry Pi or an industrial gateway. Low latency between field sensors, the intelligent cloud and smart edge devices allows almost instantaneous action on any data gathered. Meanwhile, IoT Edge employs advanced cybersecurity measures to deliver robust protection of all infrastructure, from the edge to the cloud and back again.
Following a sizeable surge in the demand for trusted cloud services in the region, Microsoft will open two dedicated cloud data centres later this year, one in Dubai and one in Abu Dhabi. These facilities will offer the company’s secure, flexible and intelligent cloud to enterprises in the Middle East, allowing them to innovate in confidence and achieve more.
“The oil and gas sector is undergoing digitisation and the cloud will be pivotal to this journey” Said Jamal Al-Humoud, Workshop Chairperson, Manager Research and Technology Group, Kuwait Oil Company. “It is very important at this stage for industry professionals to work closely with technology players to discuss their challenges and the opportunities ahead, so innovations can take birth that are tailored to their needs. This workshop held in partnership with SPE and Microsoft is a stepping stone towards our efforts of driving digital transformation in the energy sector, and enable engineers and professionals to harness the power of technology and do more.”