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Enhancing the Picking Process at Fugro

Fugro 2

Fugro Data Solutions delivers flexible, scalable data management solutions for the global oil and gas exploration and production industry.  As part of Fugro UK, the world's largest integrated supplier of geoscience, survey and geotechnical related services, it consistently delivers world class solutions to customers that include oil and gas super-majors to small independents, start-up exploration companies and consultancy companies through to national governments.  Fugro Data Solutions has operations in the UK, Canada, the USA, the Netherlands, India, Singapore, Libya, Oman and Australia.

The Challenge

Fugro Data Solutions provides a wide range of specialised data management including the storage of physical samples from exploration drilling operations carried out around the world.  Along with considerable volumes of associated physical and digital data, these samples are stored in warehouses with the highest standards of physical and digital security, fire prevention, temperature and humidity control.  The company provides an 'Intelligent Storage' service that includes cataloguing, scanning, transcription, retrievals and withdrawals giving customers rapid access to valuable data to enhance exploration projects.  Fugro Data Solutions wanted to implement a computer-based picking solution to enhance the retrieval process and provide an even faster service to customers.

The Solution

A thorough review of the market was undertaken in 2005 to identify products that would deliver the required result, during which it quickly became clear that PDA and handheld computers would not be suitable as their small screens were not big enough to display all the necessary identification information for each sample.  Fugro Data Solutions turned its attention to tablet computers. 

X2 Computing demonstrated the X2360, a robust and ruggedised tablet computer that would deliver high level of performance for extended periods in the harsh warehouse environment in which they were to be deployed.  This tablet utilised the Windows Embedded operating system and Wi-Fi links also enabled Fugro Data Solutions to quickly and easily integrate it with existing Windows-based applications and the enterprise IT infrastructure.

After conducting a short trial to prove that the X2360 met all its needs, Fugro Data Solutions deployed the tablet as part of its enhanced picking operations at the facility in Aberdeen.  The tablets were supplied with barcode scanners used by staff to confirm the correct identity and location of each core sample.  They  provided a reliable and resilient service in the demanding environment in which they were used. After six year's continuous usage the time came  to upgrade them to a newer model.

X2 recommended the X2362, an updated version of the tablet that had already delivered successful results for Fugro Data Solutions.  This powerful tablet has an 8.4" display and uses the Energy-efficient Intel Atom processor and Windows 7 Embedded operating system. Utilising an Embedded system provided a speedy, high performance platform for Fugro to work with. X2 also provided quick release brackets that make it easier and safer to use the tablets in the cherry pickers used throughout the FDSL storage facilities.

The new tablets will play an important role in the regular stocktaking exercise, which requires a detailed audit of every item stored and involves considerable recataloguing of the older items stored.  This will make the database easier to search and review, which is particularly important in the current economic climate with upwardly spiralling energy costs.  It will make it considerably easier for the oil and gas industry to revisit older explorations using new technologies that enable oil and gas reserves to be harvested more economically.

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