Robust Wireless AP for Mobile Access in Oil Well Pump Trucks
Oil and gas wells penetrate deep into the earth and create a conduit that traverses the full length of the well. Without the right safeguards, saline formations can contaminate the groundwater. Large metal pipe casings, set with cement, are used to form a protective barrier that stops oil from flowing up the well and mixing with natural groundwater.
One oil and gas well service company in the United States uses a fleet of pump trucks to pump massive volumes of cement and water-based fracturing fluids into wells to prevent groundwater contamination and reduce fracture stimulation expenses in its shale gas service work. These pump trucks are deployed at several of their sites throughout the country, and the company needed a way to remotely monitor all of the pump trucks at a particular drill site from a mobile command center.
• A wireless solution is required for a mobile control center to communicate with multiple hard-to-wire locations.
• Communication equipment must be weatherproofed to withstand -40 to 70°C temperatures with ATEX certification and UL approvals for hazardous environments.
• A mobile communication architecture is required for remote access of wireless devices and multiple pump trucks at each remote location.
In this application, Moxa’s cellular solution was implemented because oil and gas wells are seldom located close enough to an existing Ethernet network to simply deploy 802.11 access points. The pump trucks are usually deployed at hard-to-wire remote locations without an established network. Fortunately, the well operator can take advantage of the existing cellular network coverage that is widespread in North America to achieve their communications requirements.
Moxa’s ATEX-certified AWK-3121 (802.11a/b/g AP/bridge/client) was installed on each pump truck and the mobile control center. By installing a wireless access point and a client on each of the pump trucks,engineers were able to access the pump trucks from the mobile control center. Moreover, the access points on each of the pump trucks allow nearby laptops and wireless devices to connect to the same network, and also provide network redundancy if failure of an AWK-3121 occurs.
An OnCell G3110-HSPA is installed on the mobile control center and is configured with a private IP address. All Moxa IP gateways and routers are equipped with OnCell Central Manager and can be accessed remotely. Moxa’s OnCell Central Manager eliminated the private IP barrier and allows private IP accessibility over the Internet for unrestrained mobility of the wireless network.
• UL C1D2/ATEX Zone 2 certifications have been granted to Moxa’s AWK-3121 for flawless protection against extreme climate and explosive gases.
• Moxa provides complete industrial wireless networking solutions, including IEEE 802.11a/b/g standards, wide temperature, industrial certification, and GSM/GPRS/EDGE/WCDMA/UMTS cellular technology. Devices can be connected to a wireless network with Moxa’s industrial-grade wireless AP or cellular IP gateway products.
• Moxa’s OnCell Central Manager technology (available with the OnCell G3110-HSPA) unlocks remote access to devices behind a private IP address, so it is possible to configure, manage, and monitor the system over the web with ease.
See More Real World Applications
Moxa’s comprehensive line of WLAN and cellular solutions have been successfully implemented in various mission-critical industrial applications, including transportation, factory automation, smart grid, and heavy industry. For more information, please click on the icon to download the Industrial WLAN success stories.