Experts agree that advances in drilling technologies and completion techniques contributed to nearly a decade of growth in the energy industry. These advances lead to a decline in oil prices over the past two years, which has resulted in layoffs across the sector. Ultimately, the energy industry will experience an uptick in activity. In the meantime, operators and service companies will continue to explore new technologies. One key technology is satellite communications, which will be embraced by an industry that thrives on innovation.
The Evolution of Satellite
Satellite’s evolution closely mirrors cellular. In the early days of cellular, limited connectivity and a lack of standards between carriers resulted in frequently dropped calls and service restricted by borders. The adoption of Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) by U.S. carriers in the early 2000s improved cellular services by establishing protocols for digital cellular networks. As a result, these universally accepted standards paved the way for ubiquitous global cellular service.
Similarly, fixed satellites and a lack of standards across fixed satellite service providers forced users to rely on patch receivers that were extremely inefficient, complicated to use, and offered poor, unreliable connections. More recently, Mobile Satellite Services (MSS) have supported portable communication devices, however low data rates reduced productivity.
One key technology is satellite communications, which will be embraced by an industry that thrives on innovation
Today, new High Throughput Satellites (HTS) provide global coverage that deliver faster, seamless and lower latency broadband connections. Continuous end-to-end HTS coverage is not only exciting for the oil and gas industry, but ultimately it will be essential as the world moves into a global mobility ecosystem.
Global Mobility Ecosystem
As digital communications continue to mature, the next wave of technological advancements is certain to focus on supporting the evolving global mobility ecosystem. In a world where our homes, cars, offices, and cities will essentially be run by smart technology, sharing and collecting knowledge will connect people and machines that leverage information to drive successful business decisions. Advances in satellite technology will support this new ecosystem as devices, individuals, and enterprises will all demand reliable service to transfer data globally.
Implications for the Energy Sector
New satellite capabilities will be especially beneficial for energy companies that maintain operations in remote locations.