Ángel Antonio Vázquez Díaz
Vice-President of Mexico Operations
ISI Mustang
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Automation and Control Experts Seek to Guide Pemex

Wed, 01/21/2015 - 17:03

Q: What have been the main achievements of ISI Mustang in the Mexican oil and gas industry in recent years?

A: ISI was born as a South American company and now works across Argentina, Chile, Peru, Bolivia, Colombia, and Mexico. As a firm specializing in automation and control, ISI came to Mexico almost ten years ago to commercialize our SCADA systems, especially for the gas segment. While our main objective is to provide high-quality products, we are also very stringent about meeting the deadlines of the projects we are involved in. That is just as important as offering low prices since not respecting a project’s timeline can end up being very expensive. Given the services we offer, such as detailed engineering planning, feasibility studies, systems programming, HAZOP and risk analysis, and professional project management, this attention to cost and timeliness is an important asset. In order to prove ISI Mustang’s commitment to the country, we will have to act with great responsibility and efficiency in the face of the bidding rounds. Basically, those of us that will accompany PEMEX through this challenging new period cannot afford to fail.

Q: Since the acquisition of ISI Solutions by Mustang in 2011, how have the two companies merged their respective strengths?

A: ISI’s merger with Mustang was very rapid, as it was easy to integrate our market knowledge and solutions to reach the necessary level of advanced technical understanding. Our participation within Mustang projects allowed us to rapidly acquire its knowledge and standards. We are now 100% integrated with the same control software and the same market approach. Furthermore, ISI’s history in Mexico allows us to provide a gateway into the country for other divisions of the Wood Group, which we joined as part of Mustang. Although we belong to the Automation and Control Division, we participate in the entire company’s development in Mexico. We act as a bridge for Wood Group for all its new developments in the country. At present, the oil and gas industry is in an impasse that could still last for a year or two. In this industry, this might only seem like a small delay for investments but it comes at a time when ISI Mustang is fully developing itself in the country. At the moment, we have not stopped any project or investment we are involved in. We have remained committed to our work on flagship projects such as the Los Ramones pipeline and Etileno XXI. In addition, we continue to accompany all transport-related developments throughout Mexico and their integration with the US, and have developed our business that is dedicated to the mechanical and operational maintenance of pipelines and plants, whether these be separation, pumping, or injection plants.

Q: For what kind of processes do ISI Mustang’s automation solutions see the greatest demand in the Mexican market?

A: We are integrators and, as such, we do not only sell products but have the ultimate goal of always offering our customers benefits in three areas: safety, operation, and maintenance. Operational safety is essential for pipelines, which is why we have an area dedicated to preventing leaks and losses. This division’s experts can also identify whether pipelines were intentionally damaged. The systems we provide define the proximity of trucks, cars, or people to the pipeline with a high degree of accuracy, allowing operations personnel to prevent pipelines from being intentionally damaged. Another area we focus on is the proper operation of SCADA systems, which seeks to verify, understand, analyze, and manage data coming from different pipeline facilities. Finally, maintenance has to be very efficient. Our SCADA systems are not only designed to operate efficiently but also to improve the ease of maintenance. Given the current low oil prices, companies are reducing costs so that they do not have to close down a project. One of the principal ways of doing this is to have very efficient maintenance.

Q: How would you describe the support you can provide for refineries and terminals?

A: Projects like refineries and terminals are always very ambitious at first. Only once their place in the market is fully understood, can it be seen whether that ambition is achievable or only an illusion. ISI Mustang relies on its experience to thoroughly analyze a situation before making any commitment to delivering its services. Essentially, we know how, where, and when our solutions can be rolled out and this allows us to give refineries and terminals a realistic assessment of how we can help them and in what timeframe. During the construction phase of refineries or terminals, the suppliers who join our efforts bring that same level of commitment. We educate them to be very clear about the products we have to deliver.