Press Release (ePRNews.com) - ZELIENOPLE, Pa. - Mar 27, 2017 - Deep Well Services (DWS) is headed back to school.
The Zelienople-based oilfield services company has introduced college students, energy producers and prospective employees to Snubbing 101 virtual reality demonstrations and classroom-style lectures.
The 90-minute experience utilizes industry-leading Oculus Virtual Reality headsets to provide an unparalleled “in-basket” snubbing experience.
“Students at various colleges and universities have participated in Snubbing 101. At the end of the presentation, it just all clicks for them,” said Matt Tourigny, Technical Sales Manager at DWS. “They are gaining first-hand experience and they’re having fun.”
DWS initially invested in a state-of-the-art snubbing simulator in 2015. The company had taken the simulator to mobile demonstrations throughout last year. Recently, DWS upgraded to the latest software and the Oculus VR headsets, which enables the simulator to mirror the control panel on all DWS snubbing units while providing the most realistic feel possible.
The Penn State University Society of Petroleum Engineers participated in the Snubbing 101 technical elective in February, with four lectures and hands-on demonstrations provided through use of the Oculus VR. Tourigny said approximately 85 students attended.
A similar Snubbing 101 event at the University of Pittsburgh introduced 30 students to the program, while other classes were held at Marietta College and Lackawanna College.
“The simulator, through virtual reality, provides a true in-basket snubbing experience,” Tourigny said. “You’re actually standing in a snubbing basket. You work the controls under different conditions. There is daylight, nightfall. Via the teacher’s panel, you can present to the student in the simulator challenging situations such as tubing-casing blowouts. The students really benefit from this hands-on experience.”
The education extends beyond the classroom. DWS utilizes the simulator to train new employees and introduce veteran workers to modern trends.
“We want to assure that we are utilizing efficient processes and those processes are done safely and effectively,” Tourigny said. “With the new software and Oculus VR headsets, this is a whole different level on the simulator. You can build your own stacks and BHA assemblies. The simulator will have the ability to mill plugs via a 285 K jack by utilizing the VR technology. This will be implemented in later this year.”
The simulator has had an impact on the morale and approach of DWS’ workers.
“Our guys feel comfortable and confident,” Tourigny said. “That is a key factor when they get out to the well site. They’ve seen it. Even our more experienced people can get caught up and familiarized with new techniques. Whether you’re a new hire or someone moving up in the ranks, you learn and train off site, yet this is a situation very close to working a live well.”
Deep Well Services President and Chief Executive Officer Mark Marmo said the simulator and Snubbing 101 course are important to DWS’ mission.
“We are training our own people in a safe environment before they get out onto the work site,” Marmo said. “We’re introducing college students to our industry and enabling them to receive what amounts to almost first-hand experience of standing in the basket of a snubbing unit. These are valuable tools.”
Deep Well Services