Total Quality Management (TQM) is an ongoing process for the detection and then reduction or elimination of errors in manufacturing, streamlining supply chain management, improving customer’s experience as well as ensuring are keeping up with the training speed.

This is an essential process improvement method used by Shell while they implement their projects. An example among the list of Shell projects is its famous MARS B/Olympus DeepWater Project. It was their first deepwater project in the US Gulf of Mexico to expand an existing offshore oil and gas field by adding new infrastructure.

In order to implement any project Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) is important. The main purpose of WBS is reduction of complicated activities to a collection of tasks.

The work breakdown structure for this project is as shown below.

                          MARS/OLYMPUS DEEPWATER PROJECT

 

1.Site preparation

2.Resource planning

3.Physical facilities

4.Monitor and control

1.1

Selecting suitable location

1.2

Construction planning

2.1

Budget planning       

2.2

Arrangement of required equipment

3.1

Manpower requirement

3.2

Environment friendly techniques

4.1

Suitable work conditions

4.2

monitoring quality of resources and material

1.1.1

Site must suit platform

1.2.1

Architecture and mapping  for project

2.1.1

Construction cost

Material cost

Labor cost

2.2.1

Up to date technology

3.1.1

Engineers for planning construction

3.2.1

Considering methods to prevent pollution

 

 

1.1.2

Market value of site

1.2.2

Arrangement of resources

2.1.2

Running cost

2.2.2

Updated drill rigs and techniques

3.1.2

Hiring labor for construction

 

 

3.2.2

Ensuring minimum possible degeneration of area

 

1.1.3

Attracting investors and industries

1.2.3

Construction time

 

2.1.3

Reserves and revenue

2.2.3

Standardization/repeatability

3.1.3

Training of workers

3.2.3

Environment destruction must be overcome later

 

1.1.4

Development in remote areas

 

 

 

 

3.1.3

Employees to manage site

(administrative staff)

 

 

                 

 

PROJECT SCHEDULE:

First oil production begun in January 2014 from Mars B development through Olympus. This was shell’s seventh and largest, floating deepwater platform in Gulf of Mexico.

Olympus and Shell’s Mars platform combined is capable of providing approximately 1 billion barrels of oil equivalent. Olympus is a TLP i.e. tension leg platform that features 24 well slots and a selfcontaining drilling rig. It is also known for its capability for subsea tiebacks.

As the Olympus takes charge for drilling and production of platform, the Shell Mars B development is responsible for subsea wells at the West Boreas and South Deimos fields, export pipelines and shallowwater platform that is located at West Delta 143, in proximity of the Louisiana coast.

The depth of water is about 3100 feet (945 meters). With the help of Olympus platform drilling rig and another additional floating drill rig, development drilling can enable ramp of up to 100000 boe per day in 2016. It was recorded that Mars field was capable of producing an average of more than 60000 boe per day in 2013.

Shell’s Deepwater project is expected to play a growing role in worlds energy supply. Deepwater production provides 7 to 8% of the world’s energy, mainly from areas within Gulf of Mexico, Brazil and West Africa. (Patterson, July 2014)

The most notable challenge of the project the development of the Deepwater project in remote areas. Drilling in environments with high temperature or pressure and operating subsea environments with very limited amount of light, was difficult to manage with.

Despite the challenges Mars B can manage its project schedule. Shell has a history of Deepwater project that refers back to Cognac development in 1978. It also holds records of its project till the recent times of working with Perdido facility. Push through the projects like time is manageable for Shell due to its organized TQM.

Another important factor that will need to be addressed is the safety. While working at Deepwater development project and the way to address the risk with floating structures, it is important to incorporate strict safety measures which must be prepared beforehand while the planning is being done.

Furthermore, it is also important to focus on people involved in the projects, the use of technology and process of standardization must be taken into account. Regarding man force I.e. the people involved in the project it was noticed that Shell brought its Auger experience to work for the development of Mars B field. Since, shell has its old association with Deepwater, it was easy to manage the project for them. Shell also has its global network of trained personnel that can work for the development of project.

As far as technology is concerned, Shell was capable of employing an FPSO with a disconnected turret on its stone project (July 2013). This was to ensure protection of people and assets in the field in extreme weather conditions. Besides this, on Mars B, Shell also used time lapse seismic technology to present the Mars B field. This included ocean bottom sensor technology. These technologies help in placement of infield wells and made understanding of water flood performance easier.

It was also important to incorporate different equipment and technology. So, RFID systems were used which enabled personnel to keep track of equipment using tablets and other inhand devices. This made locating of equipment easier and its installation was more convenient this way. Updated equipment was employed for drilling phase as well. Shell deployed the next generation drilling rigNoble Bully I, that could be used for various purposes and was capable of drilling to a depth of 10,000ft while using much less fuel than the older equivalents.

It was also important to manage the budget so Shell was able to manage the costs at a lower level by using standardization and repeatability. The used software for modeling of lifting activities. This helps them to make actions safe and increase efficiency. Shell also used standardized components to ensure subsea trees were ready by the time rig was available for work. 

 Project network:

ACTIVITY CODE

DESCRIPTION

PREDECESSOR

TIME (months)

1.1

Selecting suitable location

 

1

1.2

Construction planning

2.1,2.2, 3.1.1

2

1.2.1

Architecture and mapping for project

3.1.1

1

2.1

Budget planning

1.1,1.2,2.2, 2.1.1

1

2.2

Arrangement of suitable equipment

 

2

2.1.1

Reserves and revenue

 

1.2

2

3.1.1

Engineers for planning construction

 

1

3.1.2

Hiring labors for construction

2.1.1

1

3.1.3

Training of workers

2.2

3

3.1.4

Hiring administrative staff

2.1.3

1

 

Path: Time

1.12.11.22.1: 6

2.21.22.11.2: 5

2.23.1.32.22.1: 8 Critical Path

3.1.11.2.12.1:4

MONITOR AND CONTROL:

In order to guarantee successful development of any project monitor and control is essential. Therefore, the employees must be dedicated and leadership should be strong. This project of Shell was precisely under control of Shell employees and contractors who worked every day to safely discover and develop the Gulf of Mexico’s vast oil and gas resources that could help in providing power supply to the people. Shell ensured safety of workers and environment was guaranteed. Moreover, since Shell has been part of Louisiana and the Gulf Coast since a very longtime, they have all support to be able to commit to improvement and development of all their business activities and social investment programs as well as employee volunteer work. The Shell employees enthusiastically participate in volunteering to help rebuilding damaged homes and restoring Louisiana’s coast. This help improve life for people working at Shell projects. This is an evidence that they are actively using TQM method in their project development. Additionally, Shell has partnership with multiple organizations such as STEM and economic development projects across Gulf Coast.

For the sake of balanced control Shell had some cautionary notes that include the following:

  1. Price fluctional of crude oil and gas
  2. Environmental and physical risks
  3. Drilling and production results
  4. Reserve estimate
  5. Loss of market share and industry competition

Precautions such as above were taken into account so that project schedule was planned to be monitored and controlled in the best possible way. (Royal Dutch Shell’s 20F, Dec 2012)

REFERENCES

https://www.shell.us/energyandinnovation/energyfromdeepwater/shelldeepwaterportfoliointhegulfofmexico/marsbolympus.html

https://www.offshoremag.com/deepwater/article/16757149/shelloutlinesmarsbdevelopmentstrategy

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