The Bureau of Economic Geology The University of Texas at Austin Jackson School of Geosciences
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February 2015
Student presentation at the 4th Annual Jackson School Research  Symposium
The mentoring of students is crucial to the development of future leadership in industry, academia, and government, and competitive research events like the  4th Annual Jackson School Research Symposium held on February 7 help students develop essential research and leadership skills. The event, sponsored by the JSG Graduate Student Executive Committee and ConocoPhillips, was judged by faculty and research scientists, and drew more than 130 student participants. Bureau Advisors and their student participants include:  Peter Eichhubl  and students Casey Obrien, Erick Wright, Jonathan Major, Natchanan Doungkaew, and Owen Callahan;  William Fisher and student  Reed Roush (who received Honorable Mention, Late-Career Masters Best Poster Award); Peter Flaig and student Tim Prather (2nd Place, Early-Career Graduate Best Poster Award); Peter Flemings  and student Baiyuan Gao; Sergey Fomel and students Ryan Swindeman, Dmitrii Merzlikin, Kelly Regimbal, Yanadet Sripanich, Zhiguang Xue, Kai Zhang, Parvaneh Karimi, and Junzhe Sun (1st Place,  Best Represented Research Group);  Julia Gale and student Qiqi Wang; Bob Hardage and student Saygin Ileri; Charles Kerans and students  Andrea  Nolting and Ahmed Hassan; Robert Loucks and students Lauren Redmond, Chris Hendrix, and Jesse Berney;  Tip Meckel and student Francis Mulcahy;  Kitty Milliken and student Michael Nieto; Lesli Wood and students Katherine Shover, Khushboo Arora, and Logan West; and Associate Director Michael Young and student Charles Abolt.
Student presentation at the 4th Annual Jackson School Research  Symposium

from left to right: Bureau Director Scott W. Tinker, Texas Representative Myra Crownover, and Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush
The Bureau congratulates George P. Bush on his new position as Land Commissioner of Texas. Bureau Director Scott Tinker recently had lunch with Commissioner Bush and Texas Representative Myra Crownover. In his new role, the Commissioner, who received his law degree from The University of Texas at Austin, will serve on the BEG Visiting Committee.

Sergey Fomel (at podium) addresses students at a Madagascar software training session in Harbin, China
In January, Sergey Fomel traveled to China to participate in the First International Workshop on Mathematical Geophysics, which he helped to organize. Sergey also taught a class on the Madagascar software package, as well as visiting the Harbin Institute of Technology in Harbin and Jilin University in Changchun. He was hosted by Professor Jianwei Ma, a visitor to The University of Texas at Austin as a J. T. Oden Faculty Fellow in 2014, and Professor Yang Liu, a Bureau postdoc in 2007–2010.


BEG Director Scott W. TinkerThe Bureau of Economic Geology community was recently treated to another insightful “State of the Bureau” presentation by Director Scott W. Tinker. These annual talks highlight activities and successes from the past year, lay out plans for the future, and motivate staff to come together, working toward vital common goals. Tinker began his talk by reviewing the Bureau’s budget. Although the budget is strong, he noted potential challenges with industry funding due to the recent drop in oil prices. He proceeded to explain that the Bureau is not resting on its laurels with the budget during this critical time by listing a number of major initiatives being pursued to expand research efforts and to generate additional sources of support. The people of the Bureau of Economic Geology were recognized for keeping the Bureau so productive year in and year out, maintaining high workloads while operating within a very lean organization. Tinker also underlined efforts to increase the number of female employees, and celebrated the Bureau’s international diversity, with 25 nations represented. He emphasized that working together in a diverse environment, although not always easy, results in more powerful outcomes. All present at the meeting honored colleagues who had received awards and promotions in the past year, and Tinker individually acknowledged the authors of the many peer-reviewed articles published in 2014. A new short film, “Core Research Centers: Preserving Stories From the Rocks,” was premiered and received warm applause. Scott ended the informative, enjoyable, and frequently humorous presentation by characterizing what makes the Bureau of Economic Geology so unique. The Bureau is a diverse, applied and impactful group with a very strong international reputation.BEG video "Core Research Centers: Preserving Stories From the Rocks." Click to see video Tinker went on to stress that Bureau science remains objective and balanced, and courageously so, and closed his State of the Bureau presentation by affirming that its people are members of a collaborative and supportive family. It promises to be another great year!



Tucker F. HentzIn the December 2014 issue of the AAPG Bulletin, Tucker F. Hentz and co-authors William A. Ambrose and David C. Smith presented the first study of the Eaglebine play published in a peer-reviewed journal. This emerging play in northeast Texas represents the northern extension of the phenomenally prolific Eagle Ford shale play. The Eaglebine has generated considerable interest because of its potential for new hydrocarbon production from both December 2014 issue of the AAPG Bulletinsandstone and mudrock reservoirs of the Woodbine and Eagle Ford Groups. The article by Hentz and his colleagues addresses the play’s stratigraphic and depositional relationships, which are complex and directly related to the play’s exploration challenges. The study, integrated with that of a 2009 award-winning AAPG Bulletin article by the same authors, also presents for the first time a basinwide chronostratigraphic framework for the Woodbine Group.


Sergey Fomel Bureau Senior Research Scientist and JSG Professor Sergey Fomel was honored by the Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG) for his paper "Transforming prestack seismic data by Gardner continuation," presented at the Society’s annual conference in Denver, Colorado in October, 2014. SEG selects the top 30 papers presented each year, and this meeting set records for number of papers submitted (more than 1600), and presented (984). It’s the 13th consecutive time Fomel’s submitted papers have been recognized among the top 30. In all, Fomel and his Ph.D. student co-authors Yangkang Chen and Yanadet Sripanich accounted for 4 of the top 30 papers, with Chen being recognized for his presentation “Random noise attenuation using local similarity," and Sripanich for his 2 presentations "Modified anelliptic approximations for qP velocities in transversely isotropic media" and "Anelliptic approximations for qP velocities in orthorhombic media."






 
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