How do we deliver energy to a world that cannot stop?

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Providing energy to the world

In over 90 years, Aramco has never missed a shipment to a customer for operational reasons. One of the main sources of this extraordinary level of consistency and reliability is our Oil Supply Planning and Scheduling (OSPAS), which aims to ensure that every part of our supply network works like a well-oiled machine, 24/7.

From wellhead to worldwide delivery

We have a broad portfolio of hydrocarbon operations and products, spread over a large region – our oil network alone has a maximum sustainable capacity of 12.0 million barrels per day. Aiming to ensure that everything works without disruption is an incredibly complex planning and scheduling challenge: That's where OSPAS comes in.

The result of many years of collaboration between Aramco employees and our technology partners, OSPAS spans our entire oil network, gas and NGL network, refining and distribution system, and terminal network. It delivers a real-time visibility of each part of the supply chain that helps us to maximize yield, manage field operations, and schedule our deliveries.

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Ongoing energy access is essential for people, countries, and economies to thrive – OSPAS helps ensure we can provide a continuous supply.

The data behind every drop

Data is the lifeblood of OSPAS. Over 60,000 advanced remote terminal units collect measurements in real-time from each of our facilities, and then relay this data down hundreds of communication lines into our servers. From there it's transferred to our operational center, so that engineers can instantly see every aspect of our company's output on our 67-meter-long digital screen.

The size, scale, and complexity of this data is enormous. Around 95% of it is captured automatically; everything from temperature and pressure readings, through to flow rates in pipelines, and the operating performance of all our facilities.

Inside the OSPAS operational coordination center, located at our headquarters in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia.

Ensuring equilibrium between supply and demand

Our ambition is to deliver premium hydrocarbon products to our customers reliably and safely. The complex and interconnected nature of our supply chain means that the performance of one facility will have knock-on effects for other parts of the network. That's why our OSPAS team combines human ingenuity with the latest technologies to help optimize our supplies at every stage of the process.

Our team aspires to continually monitor the levels of demand in both local and global markets, and then sets comprehensive supply plans to guide the production targets of each facility. No one single product is produced at levels that are too high, or too low, aiming to ensure we continue delivering efficiently to our customers and making the most of our resources.

The nerve center

OSPAS carries out both short and long-term contingency planning. In the short-term, our team of engineers and industry experts rapidly reacts to any kind of eventuality or emergency. Three shifts a day aim to ensure fresh and focused eyes are always on-hand, so if they spot an anomaly in a facility, they can respond instantly to ensure there's no disruption to operations or supply.

When it comes to planning for the future, our team carefully analyzes the supply-demand balance across oil, gas, and refined products to develop advanced models, and delivers long-term scenarios for our next two decades of production.

Limitless potential

We are continually looking at new technologies to augment the accuracy and efficiency of OSPAS. These include working to adopt machine learning, advanced analytics, and AI to build predictive models that can better forecast demand for our products years into the future. The center even has its own dedicated digital transformation team, who work closely with OSPAS staff to create new solutions based on their insights and evolving requirements.

And all of this continuing effort and ingenuity is dedicated to ensuring that our energy continues to get where it's needed, when it's needed, to help keep our non-stop world running. 

Real-time data feeds help OSPAS monitor our operations effectively.