Malvin Delgado
Director of Sales and Client Engagement
View from the Top

Gas-Leak Detecting Tech Revolutionizes Safety, Reduces Losses

By Cas Biekmann | Mon, 08/02/2021 - 10:12

Q: How has your previous experience influenced your position at Picarro?

A: To explain this adequately, Picarro’s value needs to be outlined. Picarro is a technology company that has over 20 years of experience in the global market and focuses on gas measurement solutions in various sectors including semiconductor, atmospheric safety, pharmaceutical and energy. Our patented Cavity Ring-Down Spectroscopy (CRDS) technology is at the heart of all Picarro solutions, enabling the detection of target molecules – including methane and ethane at extraordinary resolution levels – parts per billion or better. It is basically a small laboratory in a box that is orders of magnitude more sensitive and scalable than traditional technologies currently in use in the Energy sector.

The Picarro system has been designed for use in any vehicle and is integrated with a vehicle-based anemometer, GPS, and cloud connectivity where all system data is processed to provide actionable leak survey and methane emissions data. This allows for cost effective, scalable, and effective monitoring of assets and emissions. Given my numerous years working in the Oil & Gas industry within the Latin American market, I know the Picarro system will help operators achieve their safety and environmental goals. 

Q: What are the most important applications for Picarro’s products in Mexico’s energy sector?

A: Traditional leak survey is a labor-intensive process that involves walking expansive and hard-to-reach areas using handheld tools that often have limited methane detection capabilities.

Picarro mobile technology allows for the collection of leak data at driving speed, and uses the world’s most sensitive and stable technology for methane detection and gas source identification. Utilizing the Picarro Energy System for leak survey is up to 10X more efficient than traditional leak survey, provides faster, easier pinpointing of hard-to-find leaks and provides greater assurance in detection of hazardous below-ground leaks.

Q: What questions do gas utility clients in Mexico ask regarding Picarro’s technologies and methods for pipeline integrity management?

A: Utilities are asking how Picarro can help them identify and integrate real-time methane emissions data into their integrity management programs. 

Conventional Distribution Integrity Management Program (DIMP) risk models are only as good as the historical data that informs them. Plus, risk calculations often give disproportionate weight to just a handful of key threats and sub-threats.

Picarro integrates real-time methane data into DIMP models and then applies powerful spatial analytics and visualization tools to create a clearer, deeply contextualized, and more predictive view of gas assets. By integrating real-time methane data into their integrity management programs, utilities are better optimizing capital prioritization decisions associated with major pipeline replacement initiatives and developing a more accurate understanding of risk across gas systems, as well as gaining a more granular understanding of specific risk areas.

Q: How can Picarro’s risk analysis applications build a platform that establishes closer relationships between operators and regulators, insurers and underwriters?

A: The Picarro Energy system helps operators deepen their level of transparency regarding their methane emissions with key stakeholders. Picarro’s system enables emissions data to be taken rapidly at scale. Emissions reductions are easily quantified for individual construction projects as well as across the system. Large emitters, which frequently contribute disproportionately to emissions, can be easily identified so they are remediated first as part of an informed and cost-effective emission reduction strategy. 

The Picarro Energy system enables operators to measure exactly how much methane is being emitted and accurately estimate how many leaks exist in a segment of pipe. Using this data, utilities can provide regulators with solid evidence of achieving emissions reduction targets after the pipe is replaced.

Q: What are the company’s objectives in the Mexican market?

A: For the rest of the year, we want to continue introducing our company to the market and highlight the benefits we offer. We are in contact with various operators in Mexico and Latin America. Spreading our value proposition and building a potential client base for the end of 2021 and 2022 will be essential for Picarro. Adapting to a technology like ours is a gradual process for the market but the value we can add is definitely clear.


Picarro is the industry leader in analytics-driven leak detection and emissions management solutions, enabling our energy customers to increase capital efficiency and improve the safety of their infrastructure.

Cas Biekmann Cas Biekmann Journalist and Industry Analyst