The Bureau of Economic Geology The University of Texas at Austin Jackson School of Geosciences
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October, 2006


The Fracture Research & Application Consortium annual meeting and field trip was held in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, in October. More than 40 folks from 14 sponsor companies and The University of Texas attended the field trip in the Snake River and Teton ranges in perfect fall weather.To learn more about the FRAC group and their current activities, visit their web site by clicking here. 10/30/06

BEG Research Scientist Sergey Fomel will present this week's technical seminar. Titled Fast Surface Reconstruction From Point Sets, Sergey's talk will examine the basic ideas and computational advantages of fast levelset surface modeling algorithms and their application to picking seismic reflection horizons. The seminar will take place in the Bureau's main conference room this Friday, November 3, at 8:30 a.m. [abstract] 10/30/06

The 7th annual Austin Earth Science Week career fair for 300 middle school students was held on Monday, October 16. More than 65 volunteers from the Central Texas earth science community gave presentations and exhibits on career opportunities that included meteorology, paleontology, petroleum geology, hydrology, environmental science, planetary geology, water resources, and more. Other earth science professionals and enthusiasts gave their time to be tour guides and provide other logistical assistance. The career fair is just one of the activities organized by the Austin Earth Science Week Consortium each year, which includes the Bureau and other earth science organizations in the Austin area, to observe the contributions that earth scientists make in our society. For more information visit the Texas ESW Web site at www.beg.utexas.edu/esw. 10/24/06

Sean Murphy, geologist representing the Austin Gem and Mineral Society, taught students how to facet gems and minerals.

Members of the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, a multistate agency made up of all oil and gas producing states and advocates for environmentally sound ways to increase the supply of U.S. energy, visited the Bureau for a seminar and tour on Saturday, October 14. Eric Potter, Ian Duncan, Dallas Dunlap, Rob Reed, and Sigrid Clift gave presentations on BEG energy and outreach programs. The event was part of IOGCC's annual meeting that was held in Austin this year. 10/24/06
BEG Associate Director Eric Potter (far right) gave a presentation on the Barnett Shale at the
seminar. Members of the IOGCC inspect Barnett Shale core at the Bureau's Core Research Center.

Abhijit Mukherjee will present this week's technical seminar. Mukherjee, a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Bureau's environmental research group, will speak on Groundwater Contamination Studies in India. The seminar will take place in the Bureau's main conference room this Friday, October 27, at 8:30 a.m. [abstract] 10/24/06


Marcus Milling at far right with the 1992 Bureau family.

The Bureau is saddened by the news that Marcus Milling, former Associate Director of the Bureau, died October 17 at his home in Reston, Virginia. Marcus joined the Bureau in 1987 after a career in the oil industry. He coordinated many of the Bureau’s energy-related programs and was active in many professional societies. In 1992, Marcus left the Bureau to become the Executive Director of the American Geological Institute (AGI). Bureau Director Scott Tinker recalled some of Marcus’ enduring contributions to the geological community: "Marcus had a lasting impact on so many things that he touched—data preservation, geoscience education, Earth Science Week, the health and vision of AGI, and the list goes on. He was a friend to geology and geologists and will be greatly missed." For information about memorial contributions, see the AGI tribute page. 10/23/06

Bureau Director Scott W. Tinker gave the keynote “All Division” lunch presentation at the Eastern Section AAPG meeting in Buffalo, New York. The title of the talk was “Global Energy Future: The Waltz of the Three Es.”  More than 100 people attended the sold out event. The talk can be downloaded by going to the Presentations section of the Bureau Web site.10/20/06

On Thursday, October 12, in the Austin American-Statesman, Director Scott Tinker was quoted in “Drop in Gas Prices Fuels Political Conspiracies,” which was featured prominently on the editorial page. “I find it discouraging that people want to accept the most dramatic explanation of events without considering the real causes. Energy is too critical a topic to treat this way,” he said. For the story in its entirety, click here. 10/16/06

Research Scientist Fred Wang will present this week's technical seminar at the usual time of 8:30am this Friday, October 20. Fred's talk is titled A Review of Production Technology of Barnett Shale." [abstract]

Dr. Bruce Hart, the speaker previously scheduled for this date, will be rescheduled for a date to be announced. [abstract] 10/16/06

On Thursday, October 5th, the U.T. Environmental Science Institute monthly lecture featured a presentation by Dr. Kerry Emanuel from MIT titled “Is Climate Change Increasing Hurricane Activity?”  BEG staffers Dr. Jim Gibeaut, Sigrid Clift, and Reuben Reyes provided prelecture activities that included topics on coastal erosion along the Texas Gulf Coast and storm surges related to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. 10/012/06
Jim Gibeaut demonstrates coastal monitoring and erosion models at prelecture activities.

R J. Day-Stirrat will present the Bureau's technical seminar this week. Titled "Reorientation Mechanisms of Phyllosilicate Minerals: Gulf of Mexico, North Sea and Podhale Basin, Poland, " the talk by one of the Bureau's newer members will begin at 8:30am this Friday, October 13, in the Bureau's Main Conference Room. [abstract] 10/11/06

The Bureau held its 2006 Decision Makers’ Field Conference, Hazards and Natural Resources of the Texas Gulf Coast: Building the Bridge between Science and Policy on September 28–29 in the Houston area. Conference attendees included members of the Texas legislature, State agencies for resource management and protection, and other local, State, Federal, and industry experts. In keeping with the conference’s goal of informing decision makers on key issues, Bureau experts including Scott Tinker, Ian Duncan, Jim Gibeaut, Tiffany Hepner, Beverly DeJarnett, and Bob Loucks discussed carbon-dioxide emissions storage, clean coal technology, coastal storms and erosion, geological materials preservation, and oil and gas exploration and production. The conference was coordinated by Sigrid Clift and Jennifer Logan. 10/09/06

Bureau coastal scientists Jim Gibeaut and Tiffany Hepner demonstrate how to do a beach profile for Texas Decision Makers at Galveston Island State Park.

Dr. Thomas Browaeys joins the Bureau to work with Research Scientist Sergey Fomel on developing computational and theoretical methods for seismic imaging. Dr. Browaeys received his M.Sc.and Ph.D. in Geophysics from the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris in France. His thesis focused on theoretical and numerical forward modeling of seismic anisotropy. His current research projects include seismic migration and angle-domain common image gathers and anisotropy in seismic wave propagation.

Dr. Abhijit Mukherjee joins the Bureau's environmental research group as a geologist with broad, multidisciplinary interests in various fields of environmental geology. His current research is a combination of fieldwork, laboratory analyses, and computer applications focused on geogenic, groundwater contamination in alluvial basins around the globe. Dr. Mukherjee's current work also includes analysis of groundwater-surface water interactions and slope stability. 10/09/06


Bureau Director Scott Tinker spoke to more than 900 gathered for the Gasification Technologies Conference in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, October 4. The talk, delivered in the “Carbon Management with Gasification Technologies” session, was titled “Carbon Capture Ready: What’s Next?” The presentation featured components of the Bureau’s GCCC results, FutureGen, and thoughts on forming a clean coal industry in the U.S. 10/05/06


Bureau scientists Sergey Fomel and Jim Jennings were among those heading technical sessions of the the Madagascar Open Source Project at the University of British Colombia in Vancouver. The 2-day event "Reproducible Research in Computational Geophysics using Madagascar" explored current applications of the open-source software and examined new developments of the project. 10/05/06


The Reservoir Characterization Research Laboratory convened its 2006 Annual Review this week with a combined 5-day session of presentations and field trips. More than 60 members of the Bureau-based consortium observed presentations of RCRL's latest research from program scientists and students, then traveled westward for a 3-day field trip to the Franklin and Guadalupe Mountains in West Texas. 10/03/06

The Fracture Research and Application Consortium is preparing for its fall research meeting in Jackson Hole, Wyoming October 12-14. The meeting includes a field trip that will visit examples of fracture carbonate rocks, sandstone, and shale in the Wyoming and Teton ranges. A large contingent of graduate students in the fracture research and structural diagenesis programs,

including students from the Department of Geological Sciences, Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering, and from the Jackson School’s Energy and Earth Resources graduate program, will be making presentations. 10/02/06

Senior Research Scientist Bob Loucks will present this week's technical seminar series. Titled "Mississippian Barnett Shale in the Forth Worth Basin: Lithofacies and Depositional Setting of a Deepwater Shale-Gas Succession," Bob's talk will examine a classic “shale-gas” system in which the rock is the source, reservoir, and seal. The seminar will begin at 8:30am Friday, October 6, in the Bureau's Main Conference Room.[abstract] 10/02/06

   

 

 
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