Archive for June, 2009

Third Energy IQ Survey: Americans Underestimate Role of Oil and Gas

Everybody in the oil patch needs to read this!

Comparing the results to last year’s survey, respondents showed a continued misunderstanding on key issues such as the significance of North American oil and natural gas resources, the number of people employed by the oil and natural gas industry in the U.S., and the amount of taxes the industry pays every year.

“The American public wants to believe there is a silver bullet answer to our energy challenges despite what government experts predict,” said Jim Hoskins, senior vice president for Harris Interactive. “Americans have become more aware of how current policies limit increased domestic production but they also continue to subscribe to common, yet critical, misperceptions regarding how the industry operates and the energy we’ll need to meet growing demand.”

Full Press Release:

Survey Questions and Results:

Now, knowing how little the US populace understands about our business, and knowing how their representatives in Congress need to keep them happy, how are you personally going to rectify this situation? What is your company going to do to educate them about our important role in their lives? Your answer could mean life or death for the oil and gas industry!

Love, Jeanne

June 30, 2009 at 10:13 pm Leave a comment

Bjorge Naxys Wins Subsea Monitoring Contract

GE Oil & Gas has awarded Bjorge Naxys a contract for hydrocarbon leak detection on several new subsea installations in the North Sea. The systems to be delivered are based on the patented Naxys technology developed by the company over the last decade. This last award comes in addition to several ongoing deliveries where this technology is used for subsea equipment condition monitoring in addition to leak detection. After signing this contract, Bjorge Naxys has a subsea instrumentation work backlog exceeding NOK 65 million.

June 30, 2009 at 9:39 pm Leave a comment

Halliburton Releases GEM Tool for Elemental Analysis

Halliburton just released the GEM™ Elemental Analysis tool, which offers rapid and precise evaluation of formations with complex mineralogy. The new GEM tool offers operators a complete elemental analysis solution for complex reservoirs and complements Halliburton’s existing cuttings evaluation service performed while drilling. When combined with Halliburton’s real-time data acquisition software, it offers customers onsite and remote visualization of formation elemental data.

“The innovative system design allows the GEM tool to provide the most precise quantitative understanding of complex carbonates and shales for our customers,” said Jonathan Lewis, VP Wireline and Perforating, Halliburton.

The GEM tool improves the measurements of magnesium in carbonates and aluminum in clays and shale, which until now were the most difficult elements to measure but very important for describing the reservoir. An industry first, the GEM tool also can measure manganese, a common constituent of carbonates and sheet silicates. Measurement of magnesium, aluminum and manganese can help asset teams determine mineralogy to improve estimates of porosity, saturation, permeability, detection of swelling clays and rock mechanical properties. Operators are now able to obtain more accurate estimates of their reserves, design optimal completion and stimulation programs, and maximize production.

The GEM tool’s attachable cooling system and insulating flask allow the tool to run for long periods of time downhole in conditions up to 350 degrees F and 20,000 psi. Fewer trips downhole reduces operating costs and improves tool redeployment time.

Combining the superior sensitivity of the GEM tool in the vertical sections of wells with Halliburton’s LaserStrat® cutting evaluation service in the horizontal sections provides operators with an understanding of reservoir mineralogy for the entire well. The two services can also be used together to improve geosteering of horizontal sections.

Halliburton’s elemental analysis solution provides an accurate understanding of complex reservoirs, whether while drilling or during openhole logging operations.

June 23, 2009 at 10:32 pm Leave a comment

TGS Adds To Online Well Log Data Collection

The Geological Products and Services division of TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Co. (TGS) announced it will add a substantial number of new logs from Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and Eritrea to its collection.

These well data will complement TGS’ existing seismic data and interpretive studies in the Asia Pacific and Africa regions. The majority of the new data (about 12,000 wells) will come from Australia, with 750 wells from New Zealand and 400 wells from Papua New Guinea to be added to the database. In East Africa, log and other borehole data from Eritrea will be gathered. The log data from all four countries will be processed and added to LOG-LINE Plus!®, TGS’ online log data library.

“This is a key milestone in our quest to provide access to well data assets worldwide,” said John Adamick, Sr. VP Geological Products and Services, TGS. “We continuously seek new opportunities to add data to our collection, and the addition of these well log assets from these highly prospective regions to LOG-LINE Plus! is yet another step in our global expansion.”

The TGS well log database contains more than 5.6 million well logs from key exploration areas in over two dozen countries around the globe. All data are available to clients via the LOG-LINE Plus! Database, which features online access, search tools and immediate download capabilities.

June 19, 2009 at 4:06 am Leave a comment

Seabed Rig Licenses Energid’s Robot Technology

Check out this very interesting article on “Robot control system in development for automated subsea drilling” at

June 17, 2009 at 2:14 am Leave a comment

UH Named Center of Excellence by Supply Chain Council

The Supply Chain Council has named the University of Houston’s Center for Logistics and Transportation Policy its first center of excellence in the Gulf Coast region. The center will house certification training for the council and host its Gulf Coast regional meetings.

“This partnership allows the center to be recognized as a key source of education in the global supply chain and logistics industry,” said Elizabeth Wetzel, managing director, UH logistics center. “Our association with the Supply Chain Council will support its regional efforts by providing a permanent meeting and training facility. Meanwhile, the UH College of Technology, where the center is housed, will gain recognition for its fine logistics and supply chain education.”

The Supply Chain Council, based in Washington, DC, is a global nonprofit whose methodology, diagnostic and benchmarking tools help member organizations improve their supply chain processes. It is most widely known for its Supply Chain Operations Reference, or SCOR® model, a framework used to evaluate and compare supply chain activities and their performance.

“The council is honored to establish this partnership with the university to fulfill SCOR training and certification needs particularly in the Gulf region of the US, and we look forward to a fruitful partnership,” said Joseph Francis, executive director, Supply Chain Council.

UH alumni will receive SCOR certification training at council member rates, and College of Technology faculty and staff will receive it for free.

June 11, 2009 at 10:37 pm Leave a comment

ffA Updates Stratigraphic Analysis Software for Linux

Foster Findlay Associates Ltd. (ffA), purveyor of 3D seismic analysis software and services, is releasing SEA 3D Pro 2009.1, the latest version of its desktop 3D seismic analysis and volume interpretation software on the Linux platform. The new version offers Linux users an extended range of interactive analysis capabilities, including the recently released GPU-enabled Interactive Seismic Facies Classification module, extensions to the company’s frequency decomposition, multi-attribute color and opacity blending and iso-proportional slicing functionality.

In addition to these innovative 3D image analysis capabilities, SEA 3D Pro also incorporates an interactive link with Landmark’s GeoProbe 3D Volume Interpretation software, providing GeoProbe users with a powerful range of stratigraphic and structural analysis workflows directly integrated within their current 3D interpretation platform.

Agnes Campan, ffA’s Sales and Marketing Director, said: “The new analysis capabilities available through SEA 3D Pro 2009 provide a significant step forward in what can be achieved in analyzing and understanding even the most challenging stratigraphic and structural environments while significantly increasing the productivity and accuracy of the G&G interpretation cycle. ffA recognizes that many of our clients are deploying Linux as their preferred platform for geotechnical applications, and ffA is committed to provide a fully synchronized product suite offering across Linux and Windows platforms in 2009.”


Bull, ffA Team Up to Deliver 3D Seismic Software

Separately, ffA announced it has entered into a partnership with Bull SAS, a European IT company, to deliver GPU-enabled 3D seismic analysis software to the oil and gas community on Bull high-performance computing (HPC) systems.

Seismic interpreters are facing a growing amount of data to interpret. Through use of ffA’s HPC software, a data-driven approach to 3D seismic interpretation can provide the step change in productivity required for geoscientists to fully exploit their data and deliver more accurate interpretations of the subsurface, improved understanding of uncertainty and better quantification of risk.

Jonathan Henderson, ffA’s Managing Director, commented: “The partnership with Bull is an important component in ffA’s development strategy, which is delivering innovative tools that will be at the heart of next-generation seismic interpretation systems. Working with other industry-leading companies such as Bull allows ffA to effectively realize its vision through leveraging the rapid advances that are taking place in complementary technologies.”

“We are excited to be working with Bull, who brings a strong innovative approach to their systems design, which incorporates computational power and scalability with advanced interactive visualization features. Our development program is directly addressing the challenges of extracting meaningful information from seismic data at increasing volumes and levels of complexity. These challenges can be significantly advanced by using automated HPC techniques in real or near real time,” Henderson said.

The two companies will work together to promote the use of interactive methods for 3D seismic analysis using HPC technology, particularly the use of GPU accelerators. These are fitted into Bull server nodes, from the entry-level tower chassis systems with GPU and graphics cards, suitable for seismic interpretation workgroups, to very large hybrid clusters located in data centers, which Bull is already delivering to government and energy customers. ffA’s domain expertise and involvement with a large number of major oil and gas companies combined with Bull’s expertise in hybrid systems will provide a fast track for innovation and improved turnaround times within 3D interpretation and modeling workflows.

“We are very pleased to announce this partnership with ffA, which is an important milestone in our efforts to gain further traction within the upstream oil and gas industry,” said Guy Gueritz, Business Development Director for Oil & Gas at Bull. “Our involvement with oil companies’ R&D groups for accelerated seismic imaging is complemented by ffA’s automated interpretation and modeling tools, which plug into established 3D interpretation and modeling workflows and make use of more scalable and powerful technologies, which are built into our extreme computing systems. These outperform the traditional commodity platforms currently in use within the oil industry and will deliver significant productivity advantages to those who adopt them.”

June 11, 2009 at 1:32 am Leave a comment

SMT Unveils KINGDOM 8.4

Seismic Micro-Technology, purveyor of Windows-based geoscientific interpretation software, announced the release of KINGDOM 8.4, which introduces the new product line extension, KINGDOM Advanced. KINGDOM Advanced brings leading geoscience capabilities, formerly available only to specialists due to complexity and cost, to the desktop of every interpreter. Key new capabilities include a new Advanced Autopicker that is based on patent-pending KINGDOM Illuminator technology, and support for Surface and Volume Curvature attributes. These features are designed to help upstream exploration and production companies reduce cycle times and risk in exploration planning.

Stan Abele, VP of Product Management at SMT, said: “Geoscientists are working harder than ever to lower exploration costs by reducing the time to analyze prospects. But they still need best-in-class technology to make good decisions. The new capabilities in KINGDOM Advanced bring leading-edge science and automation down to a price that enables every geoscientist to complete work faster and with greater confidence.”

The Advanced Autopicker accurately picks through complex geologies and near-vertical events. It requires only a few initial seed picks in order to provide a high quality interpretation. As a result, interpreters can reduce the time-consuming task of picking horizons, reducing overall cycle times for interpretation.

Another new capability is support for Surface and Volume Curvature attributes. These attributes allow companies to identify subsurface features more easily to discover hidden reserves. These attributes indicate the rate of change of surface topology and accent features such as faults and fracture systems. A total of 11 Curvature attributes can be calculated in the new release.

KINGDOM Advanced will be generally available by the end of June 2009.

Separately, OpenSpirit® announced it will release the KINGDOM 8.4 data connector concurrent with SMT’s release of their new KINGDOM 8.4 Core and Advanced software solutions. The E&P community will be able to take advantage of the many benefits of KINGDOM 8.4, and through OpenSpirit, leverage other best-of-breed applications and data stores used within their multi-vendor environments.

“The KINGDOM 8.4 data connector is a result of a joint effort, and will deliver significant performance and scalability improvements for customers working with large KINGDOM projects,” said Randy Harvey, Vice President of Development, SMT. “End users will find it easier than ever to work with their SMT application environment, while seamlessly co-existing with other solutions that enhance their geoscience workflows.”

Key to these releases are the performance improvements within the OpenSpirit KINGDOM data connector. Automated data transfer between large-scale KINGDOM projects that have never before been possible will now be done quickly and efficiently. OpenSpirit handles coordinate reference system translations on the fly, enabling end users to transfer data between multiple KINGDOM projects, as well as other OpenSpirit-enabled data repositories.

As the year progresses, SMT and OpenSpirit will be working together to embed OpenSpirit in SMT’s next-generation data management suite, and also release the new SMT KINGDOM Application Adapter, announced in February. Interpreters will be able to work in the user-friendly Windows® environment while sharing data with any OpenSpirit-enabled application or data store, including solutions from Halliburton (HAL) and Schlumberger (SLB).

“We have made tremendous headway since announcing our renewed partnership in February of this year,” said Dan Piette, President & CEO of OpenSpirit. “OpenSpirit remains the upstream industry’s only vendor-neutral integration alternative, and through the collaborative effort surrounding these first deliverables, our mutual customers will experience improved geotechnical workflows.”

June 11, 2009 at 1:29 am Leave a comment

GX Technology Adds Sub-Salt Capabilities to Seismic Toolkit

ION Geophysical’s seismic imaging subsidiary, GX Technology (GXT), has extended its toolkit for processing seismic data acquired in the most challenging subsurface environments, including subsalt. In connection with these capability extensions, GXT has been awarded contracts by several E&P companies, including Cobalt International Energy LP, to process wide-azimuth (WAZ) datasets that have recently been acquired over a number of important discoveries and exploration prospects in the Gulf of Mexico.

GXT will utilize its proprietary imaging technology to deliver high-resolution subsurface images to help high-grade exploration portfolios, optimize well placement during field development, and refine production strategies for discovered reservoirs.

Two recent enhancements to GXT’s technology toolkit were critical in these contract awards:

  • The ability to handle marine seismic data acquired using complex-azimuth (CAZ) geometries, including wide-azimuth and rich azimuth datasets; and
  • The ability to incorporate anisotropy in full commercial production across all elements of the seismic workflow, including velocity model building using tomography and reverse time migration (RTM).

Nick Bernitsas, Sr. VP of ION’s GXT Imaging Solutions group, commented: “Wide-azimuth surveys are becoming increasingly commonplace in challenging imaging environments like the Gulf of Mexico. These datasets take the degree of processing complexity to new levels. With the enhancements we have made to our imaging toolkit, we can now deliver a more accurate representation of the subsurface to our clients in a timely and efficient manner. As a result, we are well positioned to secure large, high-value imaging projects from E&P clients seeking to extract maximum insights from the WAZ and CAZ data they have acquired or licensed in recent years.”

To date, GXT has been awarded WAZ and CAZ data processing contracts covering more than 10,000 sq km of acreage (~500 Gulf of Mexico lease blocks) worldwide. The most recent contract awarded to GXT comes from Cobalt, a company formed in 2005 focused on exploring for sub-salt and pre-salt prospects in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico and offshore West Africa. GXT’s contract with Cobalt covers a minimum of four imaging projects in the Gulf of Mexico, with results to be delivered over the next 8-12 months.

June 11, 2009 at 1:28 am Leave a comment

Schlumberger Opens Ocean for Academia Program

Schlumberger launched its Ocean for Academia Program, signing collaboration contracts with Rice, Stanford, Texas A&M and Unicamp universities to develop new technology on the Ocean open software platform.

“Successfully collaborating with universities is critical to the future of the oil and gas industry,” said Meyer Bengio, VP Technology, Schlumberger Information Solutions (SIS). “The Ocean for Academia program establishes a collaborative innovation network leveraging the Ocean platform to achieve greater efficiency in bringing research from concept to market. This network includes academia, oil companies and independent software providers.”

The universities will employ Ocean for a number of initial applications. The resulting Ocean plug-ins will augment Petrel seismic-to-simulation workflows in specific research and development (R&D) areas relevant to upstream oil and gas. The program will expand to include additional universities in the coming months.

“Stanford’s agreement with Schlumberger to create Petrel plug-ins using the Ocean platform will greatly open the possibilities for both parties to leverage cutting-edge research and allow fast technology transfer,” said Jerry Harris, assistant dean, Stanford University. “At the same time it provides Stanford with a wide distribution platform for its consortium-based research efforts. Stanford’s initial research will focus on applying ensemble theory to geological model screening, enhancing the general purpose reservoir simulator capabilities and subsalt seismic attribute extraction. This is no doubt a win-win situation. The fact that such plug-ins can be distributed to members of Stanford’s affiliate program will accelerate the development and deployment of geological, geophysical and reservoir engineering technology.”

Steve Holditch, head of the petroleum engineering department at Texas A&M University, said: “Texas A&M is extremely pleased to develop technology on the Ocean platform. The first identified project is a novel approach to reconciling geologic models to historical production data. Schlumberger will field test the resulting plug-in on a project in Asia. The software donations by Schlumberger and frequent contact between the professors and students at Texas A&M with the professional staff at Schlumberger will benefit both organizations and enable more rapid technology development.”

“Unicamp will work closely with Schlumberger to establish a joint, long-term research road-map,” said Osvair Vidal Trevisan, director of the Center of Petroleum Studies at the State University of Campinas – Unicamp. “Our first R&D efforts will center on strategic reservoir management incorporating uncertainty, linking the value of information to reservoir engineering and economics, for long-term asset management decisions. Having access to the Schlumberger technology center in Rio de Janeiro is a critical success factor, providing a local liaison for ongoing expertise and support.”

Research and development efforts at Rice University will focus on development of plug-ins for borehole geology integration with geologic modeling as well as integration of historical seismic data. “This will better prepare our graduates for satisfying careers in the oil and gas industry,” said Jan Odegard, executive director of the Ken Kennedy Institute for Information Technology at Rice University.

The Ocean for Academia Program broadens the SIS software donation program to provide greater access to equip students in all exploration and production (E&P) disciplines with the latest learning and research tools.

June 11, 2009 at 1:26 am Leave a comment

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