New Case Study Released - Automating Gas Leak Survey at Intermountain Gas Company
05/03/12 Des Plaines, IL and Denver, CO
Gas Technology Institute (GTI) and Ubisense Inc. announce the availability of a case study revealing that Intermountain Gas Company (Intermountain) was able to obtain a 20% improvement in efficiency with field survey crews, in addition to automating records to assist in meeting compliance requirements, by implementing Ubisense VeroTrack® technology. Cost reductions were found in the elimination of manual documentation, optimized navigation, and integration with compliance management.
"When we partnered with GTI and Ubisense for the project, we saw an opportunity to streamline our legacy process by shifting from a paper process to an electronic process with the VeroTrack product. The GPS concept helps with the compliance requirement because it proves, with GPS location and time/date stamps, that our field technician was at the location, further validating that we are performing the required maintenance activities," said Hart Gilchrist, Manager of Operations Services for Intermountain. "The biggest success validation of implementing VeroTrack is that our field technicians love it and would not consider going back to paper maps for leak survey."
The VeroTrack implementation at Intermountain successfully replaced the original paper-based process involving manual documentation.
"This project is a great example of leveraging GIS technology to automate the collection of field data to reduce costs and improve data quality," says Alicia Farag, Program Manager at GTI. "One of the goals of the Data & Integrity Management program at GTI is to develop tools that assist operators in realizing the full value of their GIS, and VeroTrack is an excellent example of this."
GTI worked with Ubisense to demonstrate that the modern gas detection devices could connect with GPS devices for accurate location, and store the information in a database to track compliance. Based on the success of the Intermountain project, GTI is assisting other gas utilities as they evaluate the VeroTrack solution to determine how it can to improve compliance documentation while also simultaneously gaining productivity.
"With VeroTrack, we integrated the best of existing technologies for methane leak detectors, Geographic Information Systems, and handheld GPS units," said Langley Willauer, Director of Natural Gas Solutions at Ubisense. "We focused on making the solution simple for the field surveyor to aid in getting the job done effectively and efficiently."
The study, entitled "VeroTrack® Automated Survey Tracking - Business Case and Return on Investment Calculation for Full Implementation at Intermountain," is available on GTI's website.
About Gas Technology Institute (GTI)
GTI is a leading research, development and training organization that has been addressing the nation's energy and environmental challenges by developing technology-based solutions for consumers, industry, and government for more than 70 years.
Ubisense, the market leader of location solutions, delivers mission-critical enterprise asset tracking and geospatial systems. The company's location technology provides more than 500 customers worldwide with unprecedented visibility of, and control over, previously intractable business processes. Ubisense is headquartered in Cambridge, UK, with offices in the USA; Canada; France; Germany; Singapore; and Korea.
About Intermountain Gas Company
Intermountain Gas Company is a natural gas distribution company serving approximately 312,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in 74 communities in southern Idaho. Intermountain is a subsidiary of MDU Resources Group, Inc., a multidimensional natural resources enterprise traded on the New York Stock Exchange as "MDU."