Creating a Future with Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Technology
Nowadays, technology is not only transforming more rapidly but also is becoming an even more important part of our lives. You may have already noticed how technology is seamlessly integrated into our lives, touching our every moment, intuitively assisting us. As part of this, government and private sectors, and academic institutions are not only trying to keep up but to look ahead to predict this technological revolution, so that they’re ready and able to shape and mold this future and to apply effectively in their everyday work.
Enhancing technological knowledge has risen to be one of the PTTEP’s highest priorities, especially in the arena of artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics. PTTEP has been developing its staff capabilities in these fields. Further, PTTEP has just recently unveiled its new subsidiary, “AI and Robotics Ventures Company Limited or ARV”. ARV seeks to build on PTTEP’s specialized technological capabilities in petroleum exploration and production which PTTEP has proven and applied to enhance the company’s competitiveness. Through ARV, our expertise has been made available to support other industries outside the energy sector, boosting their efficiency and business value.
Dr. Thana Slanvetpan, General Manager of ARV, shared some details about the beginning of ARV: “Back in 2013, there was a small group of staff who were interested in AI and robotics. They foresaw that these technologies would be taking major roles in our business and also our daily lives. Then, the PTTEP Robot Club was officially established with two key objectives, to support PTTEP’s petroleum exploration and production activities to reduce operating expenses while also improving safety and efficiency in operations, and to stimulate and gain knowledge in the robotics field to serve us (PTTEP) in this changing era of digital transformation. Over the past five years, PTTEP Robot Club has proven itself by continually developing novel technologies and innovations.”
ARV’s long-term goal targets are to become an integrated platform for continuous development in cutting-edge AI and robotics. This goal will be achieved with the assistance of collaboration with partners from both the academic and industrial sectors, including high potential start-ups to create innovative technological solutions that better fit the needs of business today and in the future.
One of ARV’s latest technologies developed, alongside its Norwegian partner, is the world’s first remotely-operated Subsea Flowline Control and Repair Robot (SFCR), which is capable of performing inspections, repairs and maintenance tasks on underwater petroleum pipelines sometimes on the ocean floor. PTTEP expects this robot to cut repair costs in half, require less time to deploy, and also minimizes the need for human exposure to these dangerous operations.
The application of ARV services and developing technologies ranges across air, sea and land. The company’s pioneered AI & Robotic solutions include an Inspection-class Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (IAUV) for preventive inspection of underwater facilities such as petroleum pipelines and platform structures without requiring a support vessel or a large number of supporting crew; an In-pipe Inspection Robot (IPIR) for examining inside petroleum pipelines and providing a 3D visual profile for better predictive maintenance; and an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) for inspecting facilities at height, generating aerial images, and surveying agricultural land to help analyze and improve productivity.
These technology and innovations is not restricted only to E&P activities but to serve communities and society activities. In 2017, a Multipurpose Plant Inspection Octocopter (MPIO) drone was deployed in the rescue mission of the Wild Boar Academy football team stranded in the Tham Luang-Khun Nam Nang Non cave in Chiang Rai Province, to survey the mountain top to make an aerial map in support of the mission.
Moreover, ARV’s cooperation with the Radio Control Airplane Modeler Sport Association (RCSA), which successfully developed for the first time-ever in Southeast Asia swarm drones and the programing to form various shapes. They exhibited Swarm Drone Musical Light Show on May 6, 2019, supported by PTT Group, on the auspicious occasion of the Coronation Ceremony 2019 at Sanam Luang ceremonial ground and other special occasions.