Written by jgreen

The best ideas can be found in unusual places

The energy sector has made great strides in recovering reserves from the deepest depths of the ocean with advanced techniques and technologies.

The demand for more complex solutions to overcome challenges increases daily, as does the desire to develop them.

Investment in research and development (R&D) is key in driving the sector forward but it’s also important that existing technology from both inside and outside the industry is optimised.

At Cortez Subsea we pride ourselves in creative collaboration to provide the best possible service and utilise state-of-the-art technologies for quicker, safer and cleaner solutions.

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Written by jgreen

Zap-Lok™ and MPS® presented as key technology at Oil & Gas Asia 2019

Our Director and General Manager in Asia, Murray Ross, presented the benefits of our technology at the Oil & Gas Asia Conference in the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, Malaysia.

Murray was invited by Subsea UK to contribute to its session which addressed issues and shared the latest developments in the energy industry.

Cortez has been working with NOV-Tuboscope for many years to deliver Zap-Lok™ mechanical connectors to the Malaysian and worldwide offshore market for pipelay which is faster, stronger and cheaper.

The Zap-Lok™ technology is proven with more than 7000km of subsea hydrocarbon pipelines installed worldwide and zero recorded failures in operation of over 70,000 joints.

A challenging environment can render traditional techniques inefficient, uneconomic or impossible, and Murray explained how this solution can offer a weld-free alternative to improve safety, dramatically cut costs and reduce our carbon footprint.

The event included other speakers from Wood and Enpro Subsea and delegates heard about many ingenious technologies transforming our industry daily.

Written by jgreen

Five Reasons to Lay Zap-Lok™ and MPS® Pipelines

A vast volume of subsea pipelines are planned and built every year to bring the world’s energy supplies from the seabed to the surface.  In an industry continuing to adjust to new norms, its vital we work together to drive the adoption of ingenious technology to make the process smarter.

Welding is the predominant method for fabricating pipe systems across the sector.  But there are several applications where traditional welded pipe connections become inefficient, uneconomic or impossible.  Cortez Subsea works with NOV-Tuboscope to pioneer Zap-Lok™ mechanical connectors into new markets for pipelay which is faster, stronger and cheaper.

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Subsea inspection
Written by admin

The History of ROVs

ROVs are an integral part of offshore installation inspection in oil and gas but it isn’t just our industry that benefits from ROV technology and research. The robotic underwater explorers have been fundamental in historic discoveries of the 20th and 21st centuries.

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Subsea christmas trees
Written by admin

’12 Days of Christmas’ Trees

Christmas day is over for another year and for many of us today is about eating leftovers and watching telly or braving shopping sales out on the high street. Boxing Day is also known as the start of the strange limbo period between Christmas and new year where we easily forget what day it is and consider renewing our gym memberships.

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Innovation in oil & gas
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Innovation Is Key To Overcoming Difficulties

We are at the end of January, which is rarely an easy month to get through. The festivities have passed leaving funds and spirits low. This year has also started at a lower point than others with the oil and gas industry experiencing serious challenges as oil prices have continued to drop, causing anxiety for many people. As with any period of difficulty where an industry may find itself tested, a lot of advice opinions are available and it is hard to make sense of it all.

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Christmas offshore
Written by admin

Christmas Offshore

The oil and gas industry might not one immediately associated with Christmas, but whist the home fires are burning and presents are being wrapped, hundreds of men and women will be working offshore to ensure we all have a holly, jolly and well fuelled Christmas. There are even a few reminders of the festive season all year round for those braving cold North Sea platforms in the winter.

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Time to update in oil & gas
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Time to Update

The late Steve Jobs predicted one day that tablets would outsell traditional personal computers. This year, for the first time, tablets are expected to outsell PCs and prove what Jobs theorised with the launch of the first iPad- exactly five years ago today.

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Time to update oil and gas
Written by admin

Time is Marching on

It may be hard to believe, but this weekend in the UK the clocks go forward one hour to mark the start of British Summer. Where did the time go?

Some people disagree with the tradition of the clocks falling back in October and springing forward in March with lobbyists calling for a permanent daylight savings time to keep us in line with Central European Time.

The issue is a contentious one, not least because of how it would affect daylight for many people in Scotland where the winter sun wouldn’t rise until 10am in some places, but also because of the impact it could have on how we work through the day.

In business, time can represent many different things. For some, time is money, a commodity to be traded. For others, time is something there is never enough of. No matter your mindset, when you glance at a clock one thing is for certain; time is not something to be wasted.

Time management can make a major difference to how individuals and teams operate within a business. It isn’t difficult to pick up new tips on how to make better use of your day, especially when helpful advice is just a Google search away.

Our approach to providing solutions in the oil and gas industry is to challenge the conventional and embrace a new approach to a task. When it comes to making a difference to how we manage time as well as heeding traditional advice, such as maintaining a work calendar, we should think laterally and find solutions that better suit ourselves.

Below are our time saving, organisational tips. What are yours?

1. Schedule time to make time: Approach the few minutes you need to organise your day or week as if it were a highly important business meeting and don’t allow interruptions.

2. Prioritise: It’s all too easy to get drawn into a dozen different tasks. Spreading yourself too thin is likely to mean you achieve less so select the most important task and focus on it until complete before moving on,

3. Be organised: How much time do you waste searching for data or that important email you know you saw but now can’t find? Don’t underestimate the benefit of a simple, structured system that allows you to find what you need at the click of a button.

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Business cortez subsea
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The Principles of Scientific Management

Today marks the birthday of nineteenth century mechanical engineer, Frederick Winslow Taylor (1856 –1915) whose Principles of Scientific Management, published in 1911, was the first observation and study of a workforce and how to improve its efficiency.

It’s been over 100 years since Taylor recognised the need to dispel the myth that working at a consistently high production rate would result in there not being enough work to go around. Efficiency is still at the heart of industry production, as it was in the early 1900s.

Early on in his career Taylor worked at a steelworks where he observed many men soldiering, meaning they were working at the slowest possible rate they could without receiving any punishment for being unproductive. This behaviour of intentionally restricting the effort put into work was resulting in lower productivity than was achievable, and was widespread.

Taylor recognised the need to reassess management and how a project is approached by those who are in charge of it to improve its output. Using his own personal experience working as a labourer and then manager in manufacturing, Taylor established four key rules for a more efficient business process, which he laid out in his Principles of Scientific Management. The main four principles were:

  1. Replace working by “rule of thumb,” or simple habit and common sense, and instead use the scientific method to study work and determine the most efficient way to perform specific tasks.
  2. Rather than simply assign workers to just any job, match workers to their jobs based on capability and motivation, and train them to work at maximum efficiency.
  3. Monitor worker performance, and provide instructions and supervision to ensure that they’re using the most efficient ways of working.
  4. Allocate the work between managers and workers so that the managers spend their time planning and training, allowing the workers to perform their tasks efficiently.

These points are not flawless, and have received criticism over the past century, but despite that Taylor’s four principles are still used by management staff today.

At the heart of these principles is a school of thought that is still relevant and is ideal to apply to the oil and gas industry. Breaking habits and experimenting scientifically to determine a new method of working can lead to greater productivity and reward both management and a workforce in equal measure.

The North Sea oil and gas sector has had a testing few months, with a plummet in oil price and a long wait for tax changes to support future business. We have spoken about the need for more collaboration and shared working, something which the industry has been guilty of failing to do well in previous years. Just as Taylor stepped back and analysed industrial mills, our industry needs to be conscious that we put into action the strategies which we have agreed on in the past few months. Now is the time to stick to our own principles and ensure a more efficient oil and gas industry.

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