Caspian Gas Export Pipeline – Operator Transition
The State Oil Company of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) were one of the original partners in the South Caucasus Pipeline (SCP) when it was commissioned in 2006. The 700km pipeline delivers gas from Azerbaijan to Georgia and Türkiye. During 2021, SOCAR Midstream Operations, a fully owned subsidiary of SOCAR, took over responsibility of pipeline operatorship.The legacy system used to manage the pipeline was approaching obsolescence (having been in use, with only minimal update, since 2006). SOCAR Midstream’s access to the existing system would end at the beginning of 2022 and so a new system was required.
SOCAR Midstream selected Accord to implement the new system in EnergySys.
PHASE 1 — NOV-DEC 2021
PHASE 2 — FEB-MAR 2022
Kick-Off to Go-Live in 9 Weeks
It was immediately clear that this project would need to be delivered on a very compressed timescale. The challenge was to specify, implement, test, and deploy the new allocation system starting in October 2021 and meeting the 1st of January, 2022 go-live deadline – just 9 weeks.
Accord assigned a team of 2 to work closely with the SOCAR Midstream team to establish, through a series of targeted workshops, the key functionality to allow for business continuity over the changeover period.
Fortunately, the daily business processes and data flows were straightforward to express. SOCAR Midstream had a good understanding of the operation of this system and were able to define areas of functionality that were required on day one of operations, areas that were required by the end of the first month of operation and some functionality present in the existing system that was not required.
With a clear plan for phasing the project to mitigate risk, the team carried out the implementation:
- Functional specification and design of the new allocation system;
- Phased implementation of the system on the EnergySys platform;
— Capture and processing of nominations for delivery and redelivery to the pipeline;
— Allocation of measured quantities to the shippers and redelivery points;
— System reports.
- Migration of data required to go-live from a proprietary (XML-based) database;
- System and user-acceptance testing;
- Production of training material for users;
- Planning and support for a seamless switch to the allocation system.
The system was successfully deployed and tested under budget and in advance of the 1st January go-live date. A second phase of functionality was deployed several weeks later and the system has been running successfully since. Accord provide ongoing support for the system.
Maximising Re-Use to Gain Efficiencies
From the outset, the team looked for project efficiencies to reduce timescales and risk for the cutover. The existing system had elements of the calculation defined in Excel. With an Excel calculation engine in EnergySys, it was possible to partially reuse of some calculation functions to reduce the configuration and testing time.
Accord have a library of standard modules and templates which can be used for common functionality to deliver very efficient implementations. For example, Accord used pre-configured templates for the management and distribution of notices to required recipients.
Whilst the initial focus was on delivery of core functionality for the cutover date, the new system offers many advantages over the previous system:
The calculation logs are easy to follow and can be easily audited;
Performance has been improved with calculations that were taking minutes now completing
in under five seconds;
Automation and the import of data files removes significant manual processes for the Gas
The system can be easily extended in the future;
Ongoing support of the cloud implementation is very straightforward.