GE unveils drone, sensor package aimed at detecting fugitive gas

By Luke Geiver | October 12, 2016

Raven, a prototype drone developed by GE Oil & Gas, was part of a recent major project unveiling in Oklahoma City. As part of its grand opening for the Oil & Gas Technology Center, GE explained its work to bring drones to the oil and gas fields.

The company has worked with upstream oil and gas clients on the concepts and physical attributes of the Raven platform. The sUAV is a multi-rotor with autonomous flight capabilities and gas detection sensors for oil, gas and wastewater gathering lines.

The sensors on the platform are designed to detect fugitive methane gas emissions from both well sites and other upstream infrastructure used to move or store hydrocarbons in either liquid or gaseous form. Earlier this year, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced plans to add regulations to the oil and gas sector that would require to monitor, inspect and maintain fugitive gas emissions at their upstream and midstream locations. Currently, most producers and midstream entities rely on boots-on-the-ground inspections using basic thermal cameras.

GE believes its system can be deployed at random intervals without the need to send workers to every site that could potentially be emitting small amounts of fugitive emissions.

To learn more about the Raven, click here