img

News

PROSPECTS OF A TURKMEN SATELLITE IN THE OIL AND GAS INDUSTRY OF TURKMENISTAN

img

02 July 2021

As we already know, with the initiative of the President of Turkmenistan, on May 17, 2015, the first Turkmen satellite Türk­ men Älem 52°E (MonacoSat) was launched, built by the French company Thales Alenia Space on the basis of the Spacebus satellite plat­ form. Our national satellite is located in geosta­ tionary orbit at an altitude of 35,786 kilometers from the Earth's surface. The Turkmen satellite covers most of Central Asia and part of Europe. According to the Esteemed President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, “The presence of our own satellite should accelerate the development of communication and Internet systems, television in the country, contribute to the implementation of environmental programs, improve the methods of exploration of new fields, as well as the successful implementation of a number of other state programs”.

The first step was the creation of the National Space Agency under the President of Turkmenistan, which was established in May 2011. The Agency was entrusted with the functions of monitoring the nearearth orbit, establishing satellite communications, conducting scientific research related to outer space, as well as organizing the control of an artificial satellite from the territory of Turkmenistan.

In parallel with the construction of the satellite, training of highly qualified specialists for the new industry was carried out. The specialists of the Center ­ graduates of the Institute of Transport and Communications, the State University named afer Magtymguly, as well as employees of the Agency who graduated from foreign universities ­ physicists, mathematicians, mechanics, communications, aviators and programmers studied at enterprises in the corresponding centers abroad, underwent training on simulators. According to the contract, technical personnel and operators have been trained who will provide control and monitoring of the parameters of the space orbiter from ground tracking stations.

For ground control of the national artificial communications satellite, a satellite control center was built in the Ahal province, as well as a backup control station in the Dashoguz province. Moreover, the satellite ground control station, built in the Dashoguz province, in its functionality is completely similar to the Center in the Ahal province, and is a standby fallback control center. For the purpose of uninterrupted power supply, both the Center and the station are provided with several separate power lines, as well as backup generators and batteries.

In addition to the development of the national TV and radio broadcasting network, the presence of our own communication satellite will make it possible to actively use the VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) system in our country, which can find the widest application in almost all spheres of the national economy. The advantages of a satellite communication network, simplicity of configuration, simple switching of subscriber terminals, which can be installed even on a passenger car. One of the main advantages of this type of communication technology is the ability to provide high­quality communication facilities located far from settlements ­ in a desert, mountainous area, and at sea.

Through the satellite, it will be possible to urgently notify about emergency situations, plan scientific research. With its help it is possible to monitor oil and gas pipelines (SCADA system). Space communication equipment will allow connecting oil and gas enterprises and other industries of the country with satellite data transmission channels and video conferencing. The geographical position of Turkmenistan will allow it to act as a transit country in broadcasting channels in Africa, Europe and Asia with the presence of an artificial satellite covering large territories.

Turkmenistan is among the states with a powerful oil and gas infrastructure. Due to the geopolitical and economic position, the richest deposits of hydrocarbons, the policy of industrialization of the country led by President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, the diversification of export routes for the supply of energy resources, our country has established itself at the international level as a reliable and promising partner. Turkmen "blue fuel" is being supplied to the People's Republic of China and the Islamic Republic of Iran. The construction of the main gas pipeline Turkmenistan­Afghanistan­Pakistan­India is under way at an accelerated pace. The construction of this transcontinental highway, which began on December 13, 2015, became a landmark event both on a regional scale and in the further practical implementation of the energy strategy of Turkmenistan, an important aspect of which is the formation of a modern architecture of global energy security.

To provide satellite services and lease channels (transponders, segments) Türkmen Älem 52°E, a Closed Joint Stock Company Türkmen Hemrasy was established. Today it provides communication services to large foreign companies operating in the oil and gas sector of our country.

Geological surveys from space are increasingly being mastered by different states. When studying the sounding systems of the appara­ tus, scientists gave an unambiguous conclusion ­ it will be very useful in the exploration of new mineral deposits. The use of space geology will make it possible to completely revise the approach to the study of the Earth's surface and the search for deposits of hydrocarbons and other minerals. The data obtained with the help of satellites can help both in the practical sphere and for science. Satellites are very good at transmitting images of nuclears, the largest structures on the earth's crust, which arose more than 4 billion years ago. Only satellite imagery makes it possible to fully see these structures, which can extend for hundreds of kilometers. Earth remote sensing data from space are widely used in solving various issues, including, very successfully, in the oil and gas sector. The complexity and high cost of obtaining geological and geophysical information by traditional methods in hard­to­reach areas where hydrocarbons are being searched for and produced, increases the importance of remote data acquisition technologies.

In the study of the Earth, an important role belongs to research carried out by space technology. Studying the geology of the Earth from space ­ receiving and processing geological and geophysical information from automatic spacecraf, artificial earth satellites, manned spacecraf. On the basis of images obtained from space, specialists identify known deposits, as well as oil and gas structures that have a large extent, and establish signs that would allow them to be found. The main trend of prospecting geological work using photography from space is to draw up survey diagrams and maps. They are built on the basis of differences in tectonic development of large folds of structures, fault zones and spatial distribution of sedimentary, metamorphic and igneous rocks. Space images help to study their position in the structure of the region, as well as to reveal the role of breaks in the formation of folded forms and their morphology. This indicates the possibility of predicting mineral prospecting based on indirect signs. They make it possible to determine the presence of a correlation of certain geological structures with mineral deposits.

Currently, space technologies provide an operational solution to many problems of the industry, which are such important as:

- Creation of a high­precision topographic base for the alignment of wells, seismic profiles and field infrastructure, as well as for multipur­ pose tasks at all stages of geological exploration;

- a detailed assessment of the engineering and geological conditions of the work sites and the identification of prerequisites for natural disasters (f­loods, landslides, earthquakes, etc.);

- study of the regional structure and zones of oil and gas accumulation for poorly explored areas;

- Revealing fracture zones in carbonant res­ ervoirs with high filtration­capacity properties.

At present, the refinement and correction of maps is carried out precisely with the help of satellite images. They provide a topographic base in any coordinate system on a scale of 1:25000 and smaller, that is, they are necessary when planning and performing a full cycle of geological exploration. The modern possibilities of transferring hypeometric marks and geographical names to them turn them into highprecision maps, and when using stereoscopic images, their use is more effective than topographic maps. The resolution of the images ranges from a few to 20 meters, providing a detailed binding of any objects and an assess­ ment of the entire spectrum of geological data. When using satellite images, the alignment ac­ curacy does not exceed several meters, which is reduced to a simple and quick operation that does not require topographic work, that is, certain financial costs. The analysis of space information using a specialized sofware package allows performing high quality and reliable modeling: from forecasting oil­bearing structures to correcting reservoir models at the operational stage of work. The solution of these issues is provided by a complex of images: in the visible spectral region, infrared and radio ranges, both in black and white and color images, including stereoscopic terrain models. Space research is also necessary because they provide a high density of initial information (per unit area). This is very important, since the number of deep wells and seismic profiles is limited, which does not allow using them to solve a number of the following structural issues, to find out the morphology of the local structure and build a reliable structural map; trace discontinuities, establish their relationship; structurally link the system of discontinuities with water­oil, gas­oil and gas­water contacts. The possibility of using space information at all stages of geological exploration for oil and gas, including development, was determined by the approved method of structural decoding and a sofware package created by the author on its basis. Modern means of obtaining a complex of digital space information and broad prospects for its implementation in the practice of prospecting, exploration and development of oil and gas fields, computer methods for processing and interpreting data, high intelligence of sofware products determine the feasibility of using the proposed modern technology in geological exploration.

With the help of satellites, geologists get convenient and reliable communications. Space navigation systems have also entered the arsenal of geologists, freeing them from many inconveniences and difficulties with determining coordinates on the ground. However, today we can also say that space vehicles are taking more and more confident positions in geological exploration and monitoring. Speaking about the possibilities of "space" exploration, we mean an amazing effect, thanks to which, by raising the observation point, we can increase not only the area, but also the "depth" of the view. Using the space sensing method, in just six months from a satellite, it is possible to explore a huge territory (with more than 10,000 km2) to a depth of 0 to 12 km and below with a horizontal penetration of 30, 60, 120 meters and make a forecast where there is and where there is oil, uranium or the groundwater. Proceeding from this, it must be said that the results of space photography revealed the Earth "in a section" to geologists. The brightness of individual sur­ face areas in images from space depends on the thickness of the covering loose cover, does not prevent geologists from using a kind of space "X­ray" for practical purposes. From images from space, we can find promising areas of the Earth and much more.