The Bureau of Economic Geology has tremendous partnerships with industry. Various companies serve as members of the Bureau’s industrial consortia, sponsor research efforts, and hire its students. However, not as well known is that companies’ donations of licenses for their sophisticated geological and geophysical software over the years have made a huge impact on Bureau science and on the technical skills of its researchers and graduate students.
Landmark (a division of Halliburton), Schlumberger (which markets the Petrel software line), IHS Global, CGG, and other companies together provided 94 software licenses for Bureau use this year. The various software packages allow researchers to map faults in three dimensions, characterize subsurface reservoirs, simulate fluid flow, predict possible hydrocarbon-rich zones, and utilize data in ways that would not otherwise be possible. In fact, the Bureau’s software databases now have a catalog of over 150 subsurface projects from around the globe dating from 1992 that can be accessed by researchers and students, allowing observations to evolve with new interpretations and geological understanding. Thanks to these annual licenses, researchers can focus on scientific analysis and problem-solving without being hampered by computationally aging tools.
The Bureau has 50 computer workstations capable of running the donated software, and those computers are continually in use. The licenses also enable the Bureau to provide classes to undergraduate and graduate students in Seismic Processing, Seismic Interpretation, Mineralogy, and Hydrocarbon Field Potential and Evaluation.
The Bureau of Economic Geology is very grateful to Landmark, Schlumberger, IHS Global, CGG, and other industry partners for their generous donations of software licenses—licenses that provide for the most cutting-edge geological and geophysical modeling and data analysis possible today.