Topaz Energy and Marine (Topaz), a leading offshore marine logistics company, has signed a long-term agreement and placed an order with Baker Hughes, a GE company (NYSE: BHGE) to collaborate on deploying BHGE’s lubricant condition monitoring system, VitalyX, enhancing the maintenance and upkeep of Topaz’s fleet of vessels and helping to significantly increase field time for each vessel.
VitalyX is expected to be deployed on the entire module carrying vessel (MCV) fleet for Topaz in late 2019 and is the largest single collaboration with the technology since being first unveiled at BHGE’s Annual Meeting in January.
Utilising the Internet of Things (IoT) by combining the latest sensor hardware with condition monitoring software, the real-time data produced from VitalyX will provide Topaz with vital technical information on the condition of its vessels and the maintenance required to achieve optimal performance. Specifically, sensors will be deployed in key equipment onboard, such as the engine, thrusters and genset which will monitor the lube oil for contaminants, such as metal particles and soot.
The system also monitors for the presence of water, salt water, glycol, fuel dilution, TBN and TAN index, assisting in predicting equipment failures and improving the life cycle of the lube oil. VitalyX further improves on Topaz’s ability to predict and prevent breakdowns before they happen, helping to minimise costs and better plan condition-based maintenance for more efficient dry-docking. This is the first collaboration between the two companies and is a direct example of Topaz driving digitisation in the offshore vessel sector. Today’s agreement will aim to optimise Topaz’s collaboration with BHGE in other areas to drive value for its customers and stakeholders.
Recognised as a leader in the transformation of the offshore sector, Topaz received the Intelligence Data Innovation Award in November 2018 at the Lloyd’s List South Asia, Middle East & Africa Awards for Maritime Intelligence, recognising the company’s implementation of data analytics and digital technologies across the sector.
Rene Kofod-Olsen, CEO of Topaz Energy and Marine said: “This agreement with BHGE marks a significant step towards Topaz’s mission of being a strong global partner not only for our customers but also for our suppliers. Through trials with innovative solutions such as VitalyX, we have created long-term partnerships with leading companies such as BHGE, and are now positioned at the forefront of digital innovation as we relentlessly look for ways to enhance our customers’ experience. Our collaboration with BHGE exemplifies our ongoing strategy of being a leading offshore marine logistics provider. We look forward to working with BHGE on a collaborative basis to continually improve our progressive and agile fleet of vessels.”
Martin Helweg, COO of Topaz Energy and Marine said: “Digitalisation and smart technologies offer a vast range of opportunities for the shipping industry across all sectors and disciplines. Topaz began its digital journey four years ago and has moved from vision and strategy into implementation and execution. Most OSV operators are still in the initial stages of their digital journey, but we now have the equipment and the right skillset in place and have begun to reap the rewards of this transformation. We look forward to incorporating more innovative services with leading companies such as BHGE and seeing how digitalisation will help our industry develop attractive propositions for our customers.”
Ed J. Boufarah, Global Commercial VP for Measurement & Controls, BHGE said: “We are excited about the introduction of VitalyX into the marine market, and Topaz is the perfect collaborator to leverage this digital technology to achieve a new level of operational excellence. We believe VitalyX has a real value to the industry. By embracing digital-driven real-time condition monitoring for lube oil, we are helping the marine industry move from solely time-based maintenance to a more performance-based maintenance plan, and the benefits can be truly game-changing.”