Statoil has unveiled its first remotely operated offshore platform with the opening of the Valemon control room at Sandsli in Bergen, Norway.
The control room will enable the company to operate the Valemon platform from land.
The company considers the development as a key step to allow replication of the solution to other small and medium-sized platforms in the future.
Statoil west cluster operations head Gunnar Nakken said: “We have had land-based surveillance and control of offshore operations for a long time, however, the remote control of Valemon marks one important step forward on our digitalisation journey.
“Most of our production will still be carried out on large, manned platforms, such as Aasta Hansteen and the Johan Sverdrup platform, but for somewhat smaller platforms and fields it will absolutely be considered.”
The field came on-stream in 2015 and was discovered in 1985.
Nakken added: “Thanks to new technology and knowledge, we can utilise the advantages of our smaller, standardised building blocks that are combined differently from field to field for optimal resource exploitation.”
Production from Valemon stands at around 60,000bpd of gas and condensate.
Currently, there are 40 cabins on the platform, which is set to become unmanned from the turn of the year and remote-controlled from land.
The company invested has around Nkr22.6bn ($2.77bn) towards the Valemon field development.
The lifetime of the field is expected to be until 2023.
Statoil is the operator of the licence with a 53.77% interest, while Petoro, Centrica, and Shell hold 30%, 13%, and 3.23% respectively.