A small gas leakage or a minor oil spill could turn out to be serious or deadly when it comes to the Oil and Gas industry. All it takes is one spark to set that spilled oil or gas leak on fire and the whole unit would burn down, putting the lives of the employees in grave danger and the production in a standstill. Everyone who shows up for work wants to return home and hence safety is of the highest priority in this industry. Virtual Reality has begun to transform the way we approach safety and has revolutionized the level of safety and productivity, which can be achieved with minimal effort and changes to an organisation’s workflow.

Handling and processing huge volumes of hazardous and flammable materials are a constant cause for worry. Wherein, every step of the process needs to be double-checked to ensure safety and to avoid injury, exposure and pollution. Virtual Reality simulations can be used to train and familiarize the rig hand with the process, safe operations as well as the machinery. Say, a trainee, while learning the workflow for the first time, makes a mistake such as opening a wrong valve, adding the wrong additive or starting the wrong pump – or worse – starts a fire accidentally. All of these, when it happens in a virtually simulated world, causes no damage to life or property. Virtual Reality Operator Training simulators give a hands-on operations experience for different processes that need to be followed in a real-life situation at an oil and gas facility. The new employees can be trained using immersive virtual reality simulations that use experiential learning techniques. The training session can also be made interesting with gaming features and the employer will be able to access real-time data and analysis of their employees’ level of understanding and competency before certifying them for real work.

In addition to operations, offshore and onshore facilities from time to time require maintenance that are highly critical. Virtual Reality Maintenance simulators can be used to train technicians and engineers on the correct steps to disassemble, troubleshoot and reassemble critical equipment. Incorrect methods could cause injuries to personnel and damage to equipment. VR training is four times faster and more focused than conventional classroom training. This type of training can be performed anywhere, anytime and any number of times until employees achieve the required levels of competency in safety and operations.

These are a few of the opportunities that companies in the chemicals, oil and gas sector can seize to develop employee competencies and progress towards reaping the benefits of Industry 4.0 technologies. The future is for smart factories that not only survive in a high technology environment but learn to adapt and thrive effectively and deliver world-class safety performance. It’s important that companies identify suitable technology and solution providers to guide towards adopting the right choices for their safety use cases.

FusionVR is a leading Industry 4.0 solutions company, which specializes in creating and providing solutions concerned with safety, employing the best of Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) and Mixed Reality (MR) with the integration of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies.