Over the last two decades many natural gas pipeline operators and storage companies have made steady progress in reducing their lost and unaccounted for gas. Yet the industry average LAUF remains relatively level at 0.40% of total throughput. If LAUF is only fractionally explained by actual emissions, how can measurement teams drive out the errors that account for the lion’s share of LAUF? There are 4 paths to take and only 1 can deliver up to an 80% reduction in LAUF today.
Status Quo LAUF
The cost of doing business as usual is high no matter your throughput or number of ultrasonic meters. LAUF has effectively hit a barrier to further decreases using today’s system balancing approach and routine maintenance. Large numbers and randomness can be perceived as helping, but only mask real errors.
With the status quo, errors will continue to persist even as a full-time gas measurement team and costs increase with throughput.
DIY with Labor Only
Theoretically, teams could attempt to throw more and more people at the LAUF problem, putting more eyes on measurement dashboards and SCADA data streams. Scaling up an already impractical status quo approach of system balancing, reactive maintenance, and long resolution times would only lead to a larger scale (and exceedingly cost-prohibitive) situation.
Even if it were possible to find a qualified workforce amidst today’s labor shortage, simply throwing people at the LAUF problem would erode any gains as costs rapidly mount to approach C-SMART’s performance.
DIY with Homegrown AI
The cloud, edge computing, and AI all offer tempting solutions to build a 24/7 gas measurement monitoring platform. Yet to achieve the performance of C-SMART, a midstream company would need to invest millions to develop a custom solution when programmers and SME’s are already in short supply and the shortage is only intensifying.
Home grown AI monitoring solutions like C-SMART would also require massive ongoing investment to maintain and enhance. Plus, even optimistically assuming an 80% efficiency is achieved, teams would still need to add additional analysts to achieve parity with C-SMART.
Teams need LAUF improvement now to ensure revenue accuracy and ESG certainty. While DIY projects promise to deliver this much needed improvement, it can take years to deliver results.
C-SMART has already built the gas measurement monitoring technology, digital infrastructure, and supporting services teams need. It incorporates augmented intelligence, digital twins, and advanced analytics to accelerate LAUF error identification, quantification, and resolution.
Importantly, C-SMART is available today and pays for itself by rapidly finding and enabling your existing team to fix LAUF errors, maximizing gas measurement certainty.
Now that you understand why C-SMART is the smart choice over DIY solutions, dig deeper into how 24/7 gas measurement monitoring achieves superior LAUF performance by shrinking resolution times in this blog.