DNV Updates Guidelines to Prevent Rig Downtime Caused by Software

September 11, 2009 at 11:41 pm Leave a comment

As technology innovation progresses, offshore rigs are becoming more and more dependent on complex software-intensive control systems. These are providing great opportunities, but they are also inducing new problems, often related to the commissioning, integration and operational phases. To reduce offshore rig downtime caused by systems integration and quality issues, DNV is publishing a Recommended Practice (RP) to help operators deal with downtime and its impact on revenue.

            The first version of the “Integrated Software-Dependent Control Systems Recommended Practice (RP D-201)” was developed a year ago. It addressed the roles of owners, operators, system integrators and suppliers in ensuring that rigs work reliably upon delivery. Since then, DNV has worked closely with rig owners in Norway and the US to improve the performance of their rigs’ control systems. Based on this cooperation and knowledge-sharing, an extended version of the RP is now available.

            The RP identifies the technical and management activities critical to specifying, developing and maintaining a software-dependent control system. It provides a common framework for evaluating and improving the processes of all stakeholders. Challenges often occur because there are many different components from a diverse group of suppliers required to work together. Successful development and integration is not always the case in this setting.

Practical guidelines are provided to assess integration risks and take into account functional as well as non-functional requirements.

            “The results of a software crash or integration issues may be a significant loss of revenue due to delayed rig commissioning and rig downtime. Misunderstandings about requirements and responsibilities often contribute to these problems. Furthermore, many critical integration and verification tasks ‘fall through the cracks’,” said Annie Combelles, head of DNV’s IT Global Services unit.

            Today, systems are so extremely complex that they cannot be fully tested anymore.

            “A new approach is needed for managing the increased complexity in software-embedded systems and to better manage commissioning. Therefore we have tried to capture best practices also from other industries so that companies can manage the quality and schedule better than we have observed in many cases,” Combelles said.



Entry filed under: Automation Solutions, Drilling & Completions Solutions, Facilities Design Solutions. Tags: , , , , .

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