Oil and natural gas companies are stepping up adoption of augmented reality, enticed by the promise of efficiency gains, enhanced productivity and cost savings. Chevron, which has deployed over 110 sets of Microsoft HoloLens head-mounted displays so far, bets the technology will help reduce specialists' international travel and generate millions of dollars in savings over time.
Brent crude was up 80 cents at $81.23 per barrel in early trading today after reaching a high of $81.92 per barrel, while West Texas Intermediate rose to $71.94 per barrel, a 60-cent increase. Oil prices were propped up by supply worries stemming from tensions between the US and Saudi Arabia over the disappearance of a Saudi journalist coupled with the International Energy Agency's expectations for lower global oil demand in 2018 and 2019
All oil and natural gas drillers are back to their offshore platforms in the US Gulf of Mexico and are starting to bring production back online following Hurricane Michael. About 15.8% of oil production and less than a tenth of natural gas production was still shut in, according to the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement.
The world produced a record 100.3 million barrels of oil and petroleum liquids per day in the third quarter, an increase of 2.3 million barrels from a year ago and up 1.3 million barrels per day from the second quarter, the International Energy Agency reported. Non-OPEC oil production is expected to surge by another 1.7 million barrels per day in 2019.
A comment period ending Dec. 17 begins today on a proposal to roll back Obama-era rules curbing methane leaks from oil and natural gas operations. The Environmental Protection Agency published the proposed changes in the Federal Register.
The University of California at San Diego will upgrade its outdoor earthquake simulation table to give it more types of motion and reproduce other aspects of shaking ground. The National Science Foundation gave the university $16.3 million for the work, which will include the addition of pistons and power and help engineers figure out how to build and retrofit bridges, tunnels, buildings and other structures to better withstand earthquakes.
Aker BP plans to acquire Equinor's 77.8% stake in the King Lear natural gas and condensate discovery in the North Sea, pending Norway's approval. The two companies say Aker BP would pay $250 million for the stake, and the discovery contains an estimated 77 million barrels of oil equivalent.
Equinor and its partners Petoro, Total E&P Norge and ConocoPhillips Skandinavia have begun operations at the North Sea Oseberg Vestflanken 2 field, which uses the first remote-operated platform on the Norwegian Continental Shelf, Equinor says. The field, which is estimated to contain 110 million barrels of recoverable oil equivalent, may have a 22-year production life.
Major oil companies such as ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell and Petrobras are selling older Gulf of Mexico oil and natural gas assets to focus on larger and more profitable discoveries in unexplored Gulf areas or offshore sites in other parts of the world. Analysts and oil companies say rising oil prices are increasing the value of existing fields, giving companies an opportunity to raise cash for other projects.
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