We continue our 5 Questions for an Emerson Expert podcast series with Sudhir Jain. Sudhir has vast experience in consulting with oil & gas upstream, midstream and downstream producers as well as many other process industries. He shares his path to where he’s at today, a recent challenge he’s faced working with an offshore oil & gas producer, what he enjoys outside of work, and advice for new control and automation folks entering our ranks. We’ve featured Sudhir and his expertise in many posts over the years.
If there is a particular Emerson expert you’d like to hear about and a specific question you’d like me to ask them, leave a comment below… thanks!
Jim: Welcome everybody to Five Questions for an Emerson Expert Podcast Series. I’m Jim Cahill and today I’m joined by Sudhir Jain. Sudhir is an oil and gas industry consultant with more than 25 years of experience working with producers and manufacturers across the supply chain. From upstream oil and gas production, midstream, downstream, all working with them to improve the performance of their process and their operations. Welcome, Sudhir.
Sudhir: Thank you, Jim.
Jim: Okay, let’s start, first question. As you were growing up, what lead you to study in the field of STEM, science, technology, engineering, and math? Specifically, control engineering in your case.
Sudhir: Well, Jim, when I was growing, actually I watched my father doing stuff at home, mainly. I used to watch him and sometimes join him. I was good at math and science, so that drove me that I will definitely go in a technical field. Where I used to live, I was surrounded by the processing industry, refineries, nuclear plant, and power plant, and chemical plants, and heavy water plants. So whenever I heard that they are operating the plant from a control room, it always intrigued me how good it will be. So that’s probably my first interest.
Jim: Okay, great. So what lead you then specifically into process automation and optimization?
Sudhir: Well, DCS was introduced sometime in mid-70’s where, as I said earlier, we had these control room operations. It intrigued me and where I was studying or when I joined in, in college, they had a very well laid out program where you go as a summer intern in the plant to learn and that really helped me to go into the control room automation field.
Jim: Tell us about a recent challenge that you may have helped one of our clients or customers face?
Sudhir: Well, there are many, but one of the project I am working on right now is a pretty new thing which I am doing. It is basically enhancing production on an offshore platform by providing them an application which we work over here. On this application, another resource constraint, actually, enhances the production on the platform. Most interesting is I think this was my first visit to the offshore platform, so that is very interesting, and then I am able to help them to do it.
Jim: That’s fantastic. I got my start in the oil and gas business on offshore platforms, so, yeah, that’s a great industry. So what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
Sudhir: I always enjoy going out. I cannot sit in the closed doors. Whenever I get time, I walk around, I visit places, travel, and I most enjoy… I get somebody playing with me tennis or cricket.
Jim: Excellent. And finally, so this isn’t a long and difficult series of questions, my last one. For someone just starting out in the field, maybe brand new graduate or something like that, someone in the field of process automation and optimization, what advice would you have for them to help them accelerate their learning curve?
Sudhir: I think I relate optimization to the problems solved. I always feel that if you see a problem, you saw a small problem, you see the outcome right away. Either the customer is very happy and you also feel satisfied, so improved. So troubleshoot, I call it troubleshooting, that means somebody’s problem or your problem and then as you grow you solve bigger problems and that way, you enter into the optimization field. Control and optimization is a growing field even today. Every day, you see the new technology. I have done so in myself to dive into it, nothing is difficult, and you enjoy as you learn those new technologies and help customers solving their problems.
Jim: That’s great. Well, thank you very much, Sudhir. I’m sure everyone got a lot…learned a little bit more about you, so thank you very much.
Sudhir: Thanks, Jim.