Research and innovation in artificial intelligence in the offshore oil and gas industry operations and technologies sector has declined in the last year.

The most recent figures show that the number of AI patent applications in the industry stood at 125 in the three months ending September – down from 156 over the same period last year.

Figures for patent grants related to AI followed a similar pattern to filings – shrinking from 35 in the three months ending September last year to 24 this year.

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By GlobalData

The figures are compiled by GlobalData, who track patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Using textual analysis, as well as official patent classifications, these patents are grouped into key thematic areas, and linked to key companies across various industries.

AI is one of the key areas tracked by GlobalData. It has been identified as being a key disruptive force facing companies in the coming years, and is one of the areas that companies investing resources in now are expected to reap rewards from.

The figures also provide an insight into the largest innovators in the sector.

Honeywell International Inc was the top artificial intelligence innovator in the offshore oil and gas industry operations and technologies sector in the last quarter. The company, which has its headquarters in the United States, filed 63 AI related patents in the three months ending September. That was up from 57 over the same period last year.

It was followed by the United States based Schlumberger Ltd with 32 AI patent applications, the United States based 3M Co (26 applications), and Saudi Arabia based Saudi Arabian Oil Co (26 applications).

Saudi Arabian Oil Co has recently ramped up R&D in artificial intelligence. It saw growth of 30.8% in related patent applications in the three months ending September compared to the same period last year - the highest percentage growth out of all companies tracked with more than 10 quarterly patents in the offshore oil and gas industry operations and technologies sector.