An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV or “drone”) designed to deliver heavy and oversized cargo under Arctic conditions has, for the first time in Russia, been tested at the Vostochno-Messoyakhskoye oil and gas condensate field (Gydan Peninsula, Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug), with an unmanned Tiber KAGU-150 successfully completing several flights and delivering materials and equipment to the field. The objective of this test was to confirm the potential for unmanned technologies to deliver critical necessities to standalone northern fields. The project was undertaken by specialists from Gazpromneft-Snabzheniye, representatives from Russian drone and unmanned-systems producer Tiber LLC, and employees at Messoyakhaneftegaz.
The UAV, controlled from the company’s logistics base in the Tazovsky settlement, successfully completed a
Deploying unmanned technologies as part of its logistics processes at northern fields is a key objective for Gazprom Neft, with the company delivering hundreds of thousands of tonnes of engineering and drilling equipment, construction materials, and the essentials critical to maintaining oil production centres, to standalone oilfields by road and air every year. Using UAVs opens up major opportunities for oil workers in delivering essential resources to fields safely, and fast.
The testing of the Tiber helicopter represents the third series of such tests on unmanned logistics technologies conducted at Gazprom Neft production assets in 2020 — the company having previously tested automated land freight transport in Yamal and Yugra. Based on the outcomes of tests undertaken, Gazprom Neft plans to accelerate the process of deploying unmanned solutions throughout its logistics processes, and will continue to take an active role in developing regulation governing the use of unmanned transport at Russian oilfields.
“UAV — drone — technologies are developing extremely fast in Russia, and are by no means inferior to foreign alternatives in terms of their features and characteristics. This successful testing of a UAV to transport freight under Arctic conditions is a further step towards transforming our logistics processes. The level to which Gazpromneft-Snabzheniye is making effective use of new technologies in warehousing and transport logistics means we can talk about a completely new approach to developing and utilising logistics infrastructure, based on modern solutions with proven economic viability.”Dmitry Potapov Director General, Gazpromneft-Snabzheniye
The Messoyakha group of fields includes the Vostochno (Eastern) and Zapadno (Western) Messoyakhskoye blocks located in the Gydan Peninsula, in the Tazovsky district of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug. Licenses to both blocks are owned by Messoyakhaneftegaz, jointly controlled by Rosneft and Gazprom Neft — the operator on the project. The field is considered unique in terms of its proved reserves. The development is being undertaken with very limited access to industrial and transportation infrastructure. President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, gave the instruction to commence commercial production at the field via video link on 21 September 2016. Total cumulative production at the Vostochno-Messoyakhskoye field over the four years it has been in operation stands at 17.5 million tonnes of oil.
Gazprom Neft subsidiary Gazpromneft-Snabzheniye provides transport and warehousing logistics services, and manages the procurement of materials and equipment for businesses in the fuel and energy and other industries. The company’s headcount currently stands are more than 3,000. Gazpromneft-Snabzheniye owns more than 500,000 square kilometres of indoor and outdoor storage space. Company specialists handle goods-inwards processing for more than 820 trucks per month. Gazpromneft-Snazbzheniye’s fleet runs to more than 600 vehicles of various kinds. The company provides long-load and heavy-goods freight services.
Tiber LLC is one of Russia’s market leaders in developing and producing integrated control systems for UAVs (drones) used in various industries, and in defence. The company has extensive experience of upgrading existing aircraft for unmanned or partially-manned operation. The KAGU-150 UAV, which has a take-off weight of 500 kg, and which was involved in tests at the Vostochno-Messoyakhskoye field, is capable of carrying up to 150 kg of cargo at a cruising speed of 160 km/hour, non-stop. This UAV can be controlled and monitored from several ground stations, including remote stations, through satellite or commercial communications channels. Flights were undertaken under continuous exchange of information with the Unmanned Vehicles Traffic Management Centre developed by Diginavis, a company based in the Republic of Tatarstan’s Innopolis special economic zone.