The Silixa team is raising money to help fight cancer

The Silixa team is participating in the Prudential Ride London 100 event on 29 July 2018 in memory of our dear colleague Mick Longton, who we lost in October 2017.

Andy, Francesco, Garth, Tom and Vero will be taking on the 100-mile course through London and into the Surrey hills, following the 2012 Olympic road race route.

Following the wishes of Mick’s family, the money we raise will be donated to the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity; a charity that funds state-of-the-art equipment and ground-breaking research to improve the lives of people affected by cancer.

Please help us raise as much as possible. Many thanks for your donations.

To donate please visit our fundraising page: Help Us Fight Cancer

For more information please Contact Us.

Related Links: Prudential Ride London 100

2018-03-01T11:25:25+00:00 March 1st, 2018|Front page, News|

How to create the world’s largest flow measurement network in your plant

1 February 2018

How to…create the world’s largest flow measurement network in your plant (or how to embrace IoT without becoming beholden to an automation behemoth) by Daniel Finfer, Silixa’s BDM for Process Metering.

Process control and automation is the key to getting a difficult plant to run efficiently. Traditionally, plant operations rely on the experience and tacit knowledge of a few key personnel. As the shift changes, so too does the plant set point and the reaction plan for transients. The Internet of Things (IoT) and Industry 4.0 promised to change all of those challenges. “Give us your plant!” cried the automation behemoths, “and we can automate away the shift effect, and predict your next pump failure!”.

The challenge is that Industry 4.0* relies on the installation and continuous operation of sensors throughout the plant, and electronic sensors are expensive to install and maintain. Electronic sensors need to communicate with a central computer, and who is going to look at all of those accelerometer plots and pressure traces? So, in a typical operation, the automator sells the system to management and then comes to execute the installation which includes many beautifully designed sensors. Usually, it is determined that many of the expensive sensors such as flow and density meters can be reduced in number, as machine learning will enable the key operating information to be derived from pressure transducers or esoteric arrangements of thermocouples. Then, at some point during the installation operation, a management cost review is executed, and the number of sensors to be installed is reduced by an order of magnitude. The automator then explains that the number of sensors in place is no longer sufficient to enable machine learning to be used. Alternatively, the plant is upgraded, and the sensors are no longer compatible with the new layout. In either case, the plant is left back where they started: total reliance on a few, key, experienced personnel who have developed a feel for the plant (minus the CapEx for a large sensor management system which will be outdated in 36 months).

This is where distributed fibre optic (DFO) sensing can help (full disclosure: I sell distributed sensing systems). Distributed fibre optic sensors such as DAS (distributed acoustic sensing) and DTS (distributed temperature sensing) make it possible to measure acoustics, flow, or temperature anywhere and everywhere in the plant using nothing more than telecoms-grade optical fibre. Since DFO senses with fibre and doesn’t rely on highly engineered sensing stations, the layout can be adapted as the plant adapts and grows (you want it to grow, right?). Also, DAS and DTS plant sensing installations don’t require the capital and operational expenses incurred through the installation of communications and power infrastructure. The opportunity to measure flow non-intrusively everywhere in the plant means that the process engineer doesn’t have to rely on inferential data to figure out how well that manifold is working, or whether that cyclone is running at its maximum rate.  And we don’t have to worry about being costed out…because the cost per measurement of our technology decreases as the number of plant processes monitored using fibre increases.

Silixa is excited to be introducing DFO into mining plants. As we will be showing in conference papers during the course of 2018, we are beginning to see how some traditionally challenging measurements can be addressed using intrinsically safe, optical layouts and reliable, non-intrusive adaptable installation procedures. We look forward to hearing from you.

Daniel Finfer  will be presenting case studies for our plant process monitoring products at GECAMIN WaterCongress2018 and SAIMM Copper Cobalt 2018.

*Industry 4.0 refers to de-centralised decision automation as enabled through massive sensor networks and big data connectivity. For more information on this area, see some recent thoughts from the Forbes Insights team here.

For more information please contact us.




2018-02-02T09:56:17+00:00 February 1st, 2018|News|

Silixa shortlisted for the SPE Offshore Achievement Awards 2018

London, 16 January 2018

Silixa is delighted to learn it has been shortlisted for the Innovator Award in the SPE Offshore Achievement Awards 2018 for developing and commercializing the Carina® Sensing System. 

This exciting announcement celebrates the company’s commitment to delivering innovative solutions and remaining at the forefront of technology, both in terms of the core interrogator units and the applications that consume the data.

Silixa’s Carina Sensing System, born out of the company’s most complex and ambitious development project since the release of the original iDAS™ in 2009, represents a step change in performance and is expected to transform the way distributed sensing is used in the energy sector. The system can optimise asset life span, improve safety and maximise resource production by offering real-time permanent in well surveillance, on-demand seismic profiling as well as continuous well diagnostics throughout the life of the well.

In the offshore arena, the new system can enable long offset measurements as an alternative to subsea interrogator deployments for downhole DAS surveys in remote subsea wells.

“The Innovator Award shortlisting is a validation of the hard work of our extraordinary team as well as a recognition of our successful journey. Silixa was founded in a garage in London in 2007 to develop and commercialise the highest performing distributed optical fibre sensors. In 10 years we have grown to become a specialist service company operating in the global O&G market. We hope to win, but most certainly being nominated for the award is already a big honour. I would like to take this opportunity and congratulate all finalists.”- said Glynn Williams, Silixa’s Chief Executive Officer.

The very best of the industry will be celebrated, and winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on Thursday 22 March 2018 at the Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre.

For more information please contact us.



2018-01-16T12:50:09+00:00 January 16th, 2018|Front page, News|

Anglo American leverages Silixa’s process metering technology to win smart technology sustainability prize

Anglo American FutureSmart MiningTM wins “Best Use of Smart Technology for Sustainability” award at Mines and Technology 2017

London, 5 December 2017

Anglo American (LSE:AAL) has been awarded the prize for best use of smart technologies in sustainability at the 2017 edition of Mines and Technology. The prize, which was accepted for Anglo American by Donovan Waller (Group Head of Technology Development), was presented last week at a Gala dinner in London. This award was presented in recognition of the company’s innovative efforts to deploy and integrate Silixa’s non-intrusive optical process metering flow measurement technology at Mogalakwena Platinum Mine.

Mogalakwena Platinum Mine is located in a water stressed region with complex water management requirements.  Working with Silixa, Anglo American’s FutureSmart MiningTM program installed the world’s first permanent, non-intrusive, multi-zone, flow metering system based on distributed acoustic sensing technology.  Covering over 16km, the circuit requires no power, has no expensive sensing parts, requires no alteration of the pipeline and hence no interruption to flow.  The system delivers robust flow measurements for automatic incorporation into water balance calculations. Borne from the Pervasive Sensing project theme arising from the 2015 FutureSmart MiningTM Open Forum on water, the technology is now being expanded into the process realm where the value addition is likely to be significant.

“This honour represents an important validation of the hard work of our extraordinary team at Silixa. Our corporate vision is to apply our distributed fibre optic sensing technology in creative ways to develop applications that help deal with the world’s greatest industrial challenges, whether that is safely optimising production, or providing effective flow metering. Our ultimate goal is to change how distributed sensing is used in industry,“ said Glynn Williams, Silixa’s CEO.

Mines and Technology’s Outstanding Achievement Awards and Gala Dinner attracted hundreds of senior representatives from all tiers of mining companies, investment institutions, government delegations as well as a range of technology providers. The night was an opportunity to honour the companies and individuals who exhibited outstanding achievement in 5 distinct technology achievement categories.

About Silixa

Silixa Ltd, based in London UK and the US, was established in 2007 and is supported by investors Lime Rock Partners, Chevron Technology Ventures and Statoil Technology Invest.  Silixa is transforming how distributed sensing is used in the energy sector by applying the power of the world’s highest performing distributed acoustic (iDAS™ and Carina® Sensing System) and temperature sensing (ULTIMA™ DTS, XT-DTS) technologies. Silixa delivers distributed fibre optic monitoring solutions on both new and existing fibre cable installations with the highest levels of accuracy in the industry to improve performance, reduce operational costs and extend the lifespan of any asset.

About Anglo American

Anglo American is a globally diversified mining business. Our portfolio of world-class competitive mining operations and undeveloped resources provides the raw materials to meet the growing consumer-driven demands of the world’s developed and maturing economies. Our people are at the heart of our business. It is our people who use the latest technologies to find new resources, plan and build our mines and who mine, process and move and market our products to our customers around the world.

As a responsible miner – of diamonds (through De Beers), copper, platinum and other precious metals, iron ore, coal and nickel – we are the custodians of what are precious natural resources. We work together with our key partners and stakeholders to unlock the long-term value that those resources represent for our shareholders and for the communities and countries in which we operate – creating sustainable value and making a real difference.

For more information please Contact Us.

Related links:

Mines and Technology 2017

Anglo American


2017-12-14T16:17:05+00:00 December 5th, 2017|Front page, News|

Silixa to present on non-intrusive process metering at the Mines and Technology Show in London on 29 November 2017

What if you could meter every flow in your mine or plant? Silixa’s non-intrusive process metering product makes it possible to meter many process flows continuously using only a single, extended length of optical sensing fibre. Recent case studies demonstrate how this technology can be installed throughout a plant, without any disruption to ongoing operations, on slurry, water and gas process pipes.

Daniel Finfer’s presentation (BDM – Process Metering) at the Mines and Technology Show will focus on the sensing method as well as its application for multizone process flow metering. Revealing the details of a successful process flow metering job at an operating minewater treatment plant, he will demonstrate how this technology can be used to enable process control optimisation.

The Mines and Technology Show provides a forum for senior decision makers from mining companies and technology providers to lean about the latest technologies and exchange ideas on how their implementation can enhance productivity and improve cost management.

For more information please contact us.

Related links: Mines and Technology show 2017


Image: Image courtesy of DaniKauf – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikimedia

2017-11-22T09:54:24+00:00 November 15th, 2017|Events, Front page, News|

Silixa is raising money for the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity

The Silixa team are raising money for the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity, a charity which ensures that nurses, doctors and research teams can provide the very best care to patients and develop life-saving treatments to be used around the world.

We lost our Commercial Director, Mick Longton, to cancer in October 2017. We would like to celebrate his life, pay tribute to his accomplishments and keep his memory alive by supporting this charity that funds state-of-the-art equipment and ground-breaking research to improve the lives of people affected by cancer.

To help us make a difference please donate HERE.

For more information please Contact Us.


2017-11-22T11:07:10+00:00 November 22nd, 2017|Front page, News|


It is with great sadness that we inform you of the untimely passing of Mick Longton, Silixa’s Commercial Director, who passed away on 22 October 2017.

Mick was a valued member of our team since 1st November 2013 and he will be greatly missed.

Staff at Silixa would like to express their gratitude for the opportunity to work with him. We will honour his memory by dedicating ourselves to continuing the work he loved.

If you would like to share your thoughts, memories and condolences please email


2017-10-27T07:58:59+00:00 October 27th, 2017|Front page, News|

Silixa appoints Glynn Williams as CEO

Silixa Ltd announces the appointment of Glynn Williams as CEO with effect from 16 October 2017.

Glynn brings over 30 years’ experience in the oil and gas industry having held various senior level positions around the globe. His expertise extends to drilling, completions, well testing, cased hole logging and emerging disruptive technologies.

Mahmoud Farhadiroushan, who successfully built Silixa from inception into the leading distributed fibre optic sensing company, will remain Executive Director, responsible for the long-term strategic planning and product innovation, as well as key customer and supplier relationship management. Commenting on Glynn’s appointment, he said: “We are delighted to welcome Glynn to our leadership team. His expertise is invaluable to us as we look to make a step change in what we can achieve commercially across multiple sectors.”

“I am impressed with the tremendous progress Silixa has made in advancing distributed sensing technology and its applications by developing the market leading ULTIMA™ DTS, XT-DTS and iDAS™ systems. Now with the addition of the Carina® Sensing System, we are not only redefining the limits of what is possible, but also extending the repertoire of new commercial and operational benefits it can offer to our customers,” said Glynn.

Alison Goligher, Silixa’s Executive Chair, added: “Glynn has the experience, leadership credentials and deep sector knowledge to expand our commercial and operational capabilities. I am confident we can make considerable progress in transforming how distributed sensing is used in the industry.”

Glynn began his career with major service companies. In 1995 he co-founded Sensa, a pioneering fibre optic sensing solutions provider. After the company’s sale to Schlumberger in 2001, Glynn acted as an independent director on three private equity backed businesses and became full-time Chief Executive of SPS International.

He holds a BSc in Mining Engineering from the University of Wales. He is a member of the Society of Petroleum Engineers and a Fellow of the Institute of Directors.


2017-10-18T13:11:38+00:00 October 17th, 2017|Front page, News|

Silixa’s DTS to help figure nature’s response to spiralling CO2 levels

Silixa is collaborating with the University of Birmingham and the Birmingham Institute of Forest Research to fill the gaps in knowledge about climate change related to higher CO2 levels.

An outdoor laboratory has been created in a Staffordshire forest where scientists are artificially injecting CO2 into the air to study the effects of a CO2-enriched environment on trees and the ecosystem as a whole.

CO2 is the source of the carbon that plants turn into organic compounds and researchers assume that heightened levels of carbon emission may have a fertilizing effect on plants boosting growth increasing their ability to buffer climate change.

However, plants’ growth is the result of a complex interplay of multiple factors, amongst which water availability is particularly critical. Faster growing plants may draw more water than the soil can currently absorb, leading to increased soil dryness.

Silixa is helping scientists to determine the amount of water available in the soil using active distributed temperature sensing techniques (Active-DTS).

Active-DTS combines distributed temperature measurements with a heat pulse sent along the optical cable. Soil water content profiles at sub-metre scale can be extracted by analysing the heating and/or cooling phases of a several kilometre long optical cable buried in the soil.

The information provided is invaluable to researchers in finding answers to how the ecosystem will respond to increased CO2 levels and what the consequences will be.

For more information please Contact Us.

2017-05-08T14:57:46+00:00 May 8th, 2017|Front page, News|

Silixa joins forces with research institutes across Europe to increase field experience relevant to CO2 storage

A new project named ENOS (ENabling ONshore CO2 storage in Europe), uniting 29 organisations across 17 countries, was launched in September 2016 with the objective to increase field experience relevant to geological storage of CO2.

CO2 capture and storage (CCS) is a key climate-change mitigation technology and it offers a solution to bridge the gap to a low carbon future until the use of fossil fuels is discontinued. To date, some 50 Mt of CO2 has been safely stored underground. However, this represents only a small step (0.06%) towards international 2050 targets.

The project, coordinated by BRGM (France), strives to enhance the development of onshore CO2 storage as well as to improve techniques and tools that are used for site monitoring. Several field pilots in various geological settings will be studied in detail and best practices will be developed that stakeholders can rely on. In this way, ENOS will demonstrate that CO2 storage is safe and environmentally sound and increase the confidence of stakeholders and the public in CCS as a viable mitigation option.

Silixa’s fibre optic DTS and DAS monitoring systems will be installed in several field pilots. Utilising iDAS and a permanently installed fibre optic cable in a CO2 disposal or observation well, it is possible to acquire on-demand, time-lapse borehole seismic data which can describe the growth of the CO2 plume within the reservoir. Concerns over the integrity of the cap rock or the wellbore can be addressed by passively monitoring for potential micro-seismic events. A permanent DTS system can continuously monitor the injection of CO2 in real-time, detecting leaks and facilitating gas migration.

ENOS will run until August 2020.

For more information please Contact Us.

Related links: ENOS





2017-05-02T10:25:58+00:00 May 2nd, 2017|Front page, News|