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Issue 2  2017

Working together makes a difference Jean-Jacques Biteau EAGE president 2017-2018


am very pleased to be able to introduce myself as your Association president for 2017-18, and look forward to working with the Dubai office, our regional committee and you, our members, to continue developing our services in the Middle East. It has been very encouraging to see increased participation this year at workshops in the Middle East despite the continued market conditions. For example, in May, our Third EAGE Exploration Workshop and field trip, sponsored by PDO, was attended by over 50 people. An important mission high up on the EAGE agenda is the development of our relationships with the other professional societies. This is going from from strength to strength. Regular meetings between the regional managers at AAPG, SEG, SPE and EAGE have meant that there are many joint society events planned for

Trivia Question A geologic feature that represents a weathered surface and/or missing section is termed: A - Subcrop B - Congruence C - Unconformity D - Normal fault

the near future, the AAPG/EAGE Workshop on Tight Reservoirs in the Middle East and the SPE/ EAGE Workshop on Reservoir Lifecycle Management to name a couple. It is also important to note the great work done by AAPG, EAGE and lead society SEG in bringing together students from across the region to the Middle East Geoscience Student Conference (MEGSC) in Al Ain. The conference was a huge success and will be repeated with EAGE as lead society in 2019; in the meantime, the societies are working together on the Student Programme at GEO2018. Our staff are also being proactive. Regional manager Emily Bell visited Jeddah earlier in the year, for details of her trip see page 5. Emily also visited Tehran to attend an event organized by our associate society IPGA but also to discuss ‘Shiraz’. This was the EAGE Conference and Exhibition which successfully took place back in 2009 and which we now hope to hold again in 2019, so this is something to watch out for. I personally look forward to making my first trip to the Middle East as your president when I visit Dhahran Geological Society to give a presentation at one of its dinners as well as visit some faithful old friends of EAGE at Saudi Aramco. As incoming president, my intention is to continue implementing the Board’s declared strategy as transparently as possible. At the last Board meeting, held during our very well attended Annual Meeting in Paris, I suggested that my term in office would encompass three themes: growth in all regions, sustainable finances and mutual support. We have set ourselves the ambitious target of increasing the overall membership from the cur-

Answers on p. 10 Read more on page 2 ➤

Borehole Geophysics workshop for all


he fourth EAGE Borehole Geophysics Workshop and accompanying short course offer an unrivalled opportunity to catch up with all the latest in this increasingly important discipline. This special three-day event is scheduled to take place in Abu Dhabi from 19-21 November 2017. It is the latest in a series of previously successful editions, in Istanbul 2010, Malta 2013, and Athens 2015. The workshop invites anyone in the industry interested (and not necessarily specialists) in borehole geophysics to join and share the experience. An eclectic variety of applications and techniques covered by the official Read more on page 2 ➤

What's inside Watch out for GEO2018! 4 Why Boot Camp is a great career move


Shake-up ahead for ADNOC offshore concessions 11


Working together makes a difference Continued from p. 1

rent 19,500 to 25,000 by 2020, and I am sure that some of that increase will come from the Middle East where our portfolio of activities and services is resonating. We also have the opportunity to establish ourselves more firmly in China and India, as well as South America and Africa for which we now have regional offices. Having spent my career working for Big Oil, I am conscious of the necessity to keep an eye on the money in any endeavour. This applies especially to EAGE where our revenues, principally from membership subscriptions and events, reflect the state of the industries we serve. This brings me to my third and perhaps key theme of ‘mutual support’. The idea is to move towards a more efficient administrative structure. Under consideration is a change to a more strategic Board, comparable to a commercial corporation, with fewer operational functions and therefore more scope to review policy issues. This does not preclude the drive already underway to promote diversity at every level of representation. I know the Board would welcome increased participation by members in the Middle

EAGE Newsletter Middle East Executive Director Marcel van Loon ( Regional Manager Middle East Emily Bell ( Account Manager Corporate Relations Daan van Ommen ( EAGE Middle East Office EAGE Middle East FZ-LLC Dubai Knowledge Village Block 13 Office F-25 PO Box 501711 Dubai, United Arab Emirates Tel.: +971 4 369 3897 Fax: +971 4 360 4702 E-mail: Website: Submission of articles Newsletter on the Web (


Jean-Jacques Biteau and the Iranian Geophysical Society.

East region in our committees, publications and annual awards in order to bring a wider perspective to our decision-making and services. I also define mutual support as customizing our offerings. I believe there is merit in dividing our major divisions into multi-disciplinary sections. This would allow more attention to be given to focused interests within the geosciences and engineering field and stimulate new workshop and short course topics. Greater priority should also be placed upon increasing the

involvement of the Board and key committee members in the events generated worldwide. Meantime I commend the work of the regional office serving our members and companies in the region and constantly looking for new directions and activities that meet the needs of our members. This is reflected in the number of workshops that have been organized out of the Middle East Office for the second part of this year, details of which can be found in this newsletter.

Borehole Geophysics workshop for all Continued from p. 1

programme of papers and posters should attract a wide range of industry representatives and academics to come and debate recent technological progress and case studies. The workshop will also aim at identifying new challenges, industry expectations and requirements in the light of current oil and gas environment. The organizing committee (made up of 15 enthusiastic representatives from worldwide operating companies and contractors) found it logical to set the venue of this fourth workshop in the heart of the Middle East, since the major oil companies in the region have been extremely supportive of this series of events since day one. The committee will welcome Dr Scott Leaney, global geophysics advisor, Schlumberger, as keynote speaker. Dr Leaney has been an outstanding contributor to the discipline over the past three decades, through 50+ publications and numerous patents. He has worked on a large diversity of leading edge topics and applications

like ray trace modelling and inversion in anisotropic media, AVO/AVA, micro-seismic, 3DVSP and borehole data integration. The one-day short course supported by RPS follows the main event on 22 November when distinguished experts Les Nutt (ex-Schlumberger/ WesternGeco )and Allan Campbell (WesternGeco) present ‘Borehole Geophysics, a tool to everyone’. The course will cover: Advanced uses of Borehole Seismic, including 2D and 3D imaging; Seismic model calibration, and time lapse reservoir monitoring; Specifics of related survey planning, acquisition and processing; Advanced VSP data processing required to generate high resolution images, estimate anisotropy, Q, and validate AVO effects; Use of VSP to monitor reservoir changes due to enhanced recovery and sequestration projects; and An introduction to Crosswell Seismic, Seismic While Drilling and Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS). For more information and to register for the Workshop and/or Short Course, please visit the EAGE website.



EAGE Forum to explore Eastern Africa’s hydrocarbons potential


ollowing recent acreage awards in Mozambique, the country’s capital city of Maputo was a logical choice for the venue of the Third Eastern African Petroleum Geoscience Forum to be held in from 6-9 November 2017. Further licensing rounds are pending in the region so the scene is set for a new wave of exploration activity. In this context the theme of the event ‘Managing Subsurface Risk in Finding and Developing Hydrocarbons’ makes perfect sense, East Africa provides a frontier for hydrocarbon, mineral resource and geothermal exploration. Successful ventures require detailed and consistent stratigraphic understanding, allowing depositional patterns to be placed in tectonic, paleogeographic and paleoclimatic context. Local content and technology transfer are also important strategic aspects of the region’s oil and gas industry, presenting both challenges and opportunities. Understanding the issues is an important first step towards developing local capacity and finding collaborative solutions. As part of the technical programme, delegates can look forward to a one-day short course on ‘Integrated Statigraphic Approaches’ to be provided by TNO. This course will cover various bio-, chemo-, seismo- and sequence stratigraphic methods. A number of multi-disciplinary case-studies will

Maputo, the capital city of Mozambique.

also be presented for discussion. Specific attention will be paid to visualisation techniques and practices. Topics to be covered are: Geological Time Scale: Current Status; Climate, Sea Level and Stratigraphic Charts and Visualization Techniques. In addition, a dedicated Cores Session will be held at the INP Cores Facility in Zimpeto, one hour outside Maputo, with cores from Anadarko, Sasol, ENI and INP. The full technical programme features a number of widely anticipated presentations including Source to Sink: From Regional Knowledge to Field/Reservoir Properties; Regional Hydrocarbon Systems; Innovation in Technology; Industry-Academia-Government Collaboration; and Learnings from the Past.

At the forum, delegates can expect an interactive environment with presentations, guest speakers, informal discussion and an opportunity to appreciate the rich culture of Eastern Africa. Maputo, known as the ‘City of Acacias’, is a true cosmopolitan city that offers rich cultural experiences and excellent hotels and restaurants. The Forum will be held at the Radisson Blu Hotel inMaputo and is sponsored by ExxonMobil and Total (Platinum); Anadarko (Gold); Statoil (Lunch); Short Course (TNO). Register now to take advantage of the early bird rates! The short course and Cores Display Session are included in the registration fee. For more information, please contact

EAGE lends a hand at Iranian geomechanics event

Participants at the geomechanics meet.


arlier this year EAGE raised the flag in a big way in support of the Iranian Petroleum Geomechanics Association (IPGA) Second National Conference on Petroleum Geomechanics, held at the National Iranian

Oil Company (NIOC) Exploration Directorate in Tehran. The event was entitled, ‘Reducing the Risks of Exploration & Production.’ We nominated EAGE Education Officer Dr Jorg Herwanger (MP Geomechanics) to be the conference’s keynote speaker. In fact, Dr Herwanger not only gave his presentation on ‘3D and 4D Geomechanical Models: Case Studies from Four Continents’, but he

many people about EAGE. Our publications and brochures were also popular with a variety of geoscientists, engineers and the like. As part of EAGE’s trip to Tehran Dr Herwanger also managed to give a half day course at the University of Tehran in collaboration with the Iranian Geophysical Society (IGS). The course was well attended and

also supported the conference by offering his EET5 Course ‘Seismic Geomechanics: How to Build and Calibrate Geomechanical Models using 3D and 4D Seismic Data’. The IPGA also offered EAGE the chance to be in the exhibition where we spoke to

well appreciated by the students. After the course, all of the students present signed complimentary student membership forms giving them student membership with EAGE for 2017. This seemed like a vote in our favour!




Watch for the short course menu at GEO2018!


ave the dates 5-8 March! That’s when GEO2018 takes place, this time the biannual event is themed ‘Pushing the Technical Limits: Shaping the Energy Landscape’. Of special interest for some will be the short courses offered by AAPG, SEG and EAGE. Inaugurated in 1994, GEO is the largest and best attended technical event of its kind in the region. A world-class exhibition and an exceptional technical conference with presentations by key industry figures combine to offer exceptional networking, business and educational opportunities to all professionals with an interest in the future development of the Middle East’s hydrocarbon resources. The ‘GEO’ series of Conference and Exhibitions are held in Manama, Bahrain in even years, supported by AAPG, SEG and EAGE. Each society will be offering one educational short course during the event at Le Meridien, Bahrain. Dr Ahmed Ouenes (FracGeo) will present the AAPG two-day short course on ‘Unconventional and Fractured Reservoir Modelling’ on 4-5 March. It is intended to provide an opportunity to learn all the aspects related to the understanding and modelling of unconventional and fractured reservoirs. Participants can learn how fractured and unconventional reservoirs differ from conventional

Manama, Bahrain.

reservoirs, and how to approach their unconventional fractured reservoir projects in a systematic manner. Mohammed A. Mian (Saudi Aramco) will provide the Dahrain Geoscience Society one-day short course contribution on ‘Petroleum Economics & Risk Analysis’ on 5 March. The background is that performing prudent investment evaluation becomes even more critical in the lower crude oil price environment and/or development of marginal field/projects. Various techniques have evolved over time in determining and calculating economic inputs, evaluating investments, quantifying risk and generating feasible portfolios. The course will bridge the gap between theory and practice and show the methodologies used in performing economic evaluations and making decisions on the economic viability of investments.

Dr George Bertram will be presenting the EAGE two-day short course on ‘More from Seismic - A Workshop on Seismic Stratigraphic Techniques’ on 4-5 March’. It will discuss how seismic data contains a wealth of information if you know where and how to look for it. Using a number of seismicbased examples and ‘hands on’ interpretation exercises from different geological settings worldwide, attendees will learn how to identify different depositional environments, predict facies, (especially reservoir, source rock and seal) measure water depths, calculate subsidence trends, recognize and quantify sea-level changes and, where appropriate, determine the palaeo weather conditions. Issues of flattening and datuming to improve the understanding basin evolution will also be addressed. The one-day SEG short course on ‘Carbonate Essentials: Pores to Prospect’ will be given by Prof Christopher Liner (University of Arkansas) on 5 March. The course offers a broad overview of carbonate geology and properties that can be mapped on a seismic scale as potential hydrocarbon reservoirs. To illustrate key concepts, field sites and case histories will be presented from global locations. Registration for all Short Courses will open in early October 2017.

Joint workshop to tackle reservoir lifecycle issues for oil and service companies


ne of the key issues in E&P operations is how to ensure oilfield operators and service companies work together in a team effort to ensure the best result from the development of a reservoir from start to completion. That’s why the SPE/EAGE joint workshop on ‘Reservoir Lifecycle Management—How to Maximise Value’ is particularly intriguing. The objective of the workshop to be held on 20–21 February 2018 in Abu Dhabi is to bring together cross-discipline teams from both operators and service companies to discuss the challenges and resources that can be shared


to maximize value from reservoirs over the full lifetime of the field. The premise is that operators have ownership of the reservoirs, but service companies often provide the keys to unlock value from them, with people, processes, data, new techniques and knowledge. Today we have at our disposal advanced technologies, greater knowledge and the most computing power we have ever had before. In the context of the Middle East, what do operators and service companies believe will bring maximum value from the reservoirs in today’s landscape? How have national and international oil companies

changed their strategy? These questions and many others will be part of the workshop. This workshop will have six technical sessions: Field Development Strategies: How Have You Changed Your Mind?; Reservoir Management Excellence; Journey to Successful IOR and EOR Technologies; Key Challenges Behind Complex Reservoirs Development; Maximizing the Value of a Brown Field Asset; and Enablers for Reservoir Management Excellence. For more information, please visit or contact Yousuff Dadapeer at



Middle East tight reservoirs are target of Bahrain workshop


he fourth and latest AAPG/EAGE workshop collaboration in the Middle East,will be the first to focus solely on exploration and development of tight reservoirs in the Middle East across the different disciplines (geology, geophysics and engineering). The workshop to be held in Manama, Bahrain on 27-28 November 2017 is expected to highlight practical examples and knowledge gained from both industry and academia in the region. During the last few years, developing tight reservoirs (sandstone, carbonate and shale) has been steadily gaining in importance in the Middle East region as various countries have started to explore the potential of unconventional resources. NOCs and IOCs as well as service companies and universities in the region have been involved with varying results in different countries.

The core objective of this workshop is to build a discussion on tight reservoir challenges in the Middle East. Four main sessions will cover Resource Assessments and De-Risking Approaches for Tight Reservoir Exploration and Development in the Middle East; Challenges in Characterizing Tight Reservoirs and Identifying Sweet Spots; Middle East Hydraulic Fracturing: What Works and What Doesn’t; and Closing the Loop and Industry Benchmarking: Production and Reservoir Engineering Best Practices. All sessions are designed to capture local experiences. However, it will include international perspectives from outside the region featuring production and reservoir engineering best practices. In addition, a poster session will illustrate breakthroughs and new technologies.

Those interested in proposing a poster should send a short abstract along with the poster artwork (in JPEG or PDF high resolution format) to Anastasia Kuzmenko ( by 26 October 2017. Registration is currently open for the workshop with special prices for young professionals and students. Please check the EAGE website for more information or contact the EAGE Middle East office.

KAUST visit seals spirit of cooperation oping role in the Middle East with a strong emphasis on students and their future progression within the industry. Emily invited to make a presentation to the Earth Science and Engineering Department. Dr Thomas Finkbeiner kindly hosted Emily in Jeddah during her few days in Saudi Arabia where they followed a busy schedule of meetings and tours as well as social evenings, all on the gigantic KAUST Campus. Dr Finkbeiner, a long standing member of EAGE, is on a number of event and other EAGE-related committees, e.g., the SPE/ EAGE Workshop on Integrated Geomechanics in E&P, scheduled for 25-26 April 2018, the Third EAGE Workshop on Naturally Fractured Reservoirs on 5-7 February 2018, and Executive Committee

From the left: David Keyes (KAUST), Emily Bell (EAGE), Amik St-Cyr (Shell).


mily Bell, EAGE regional manager Middle East, paid a visit recently to King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). The purpose was to discuss EAGE’s devel-

member of GEO2018. He is also on the EAGE Middle East Regional Council and Student Committee. Emily was lucky enough to have a second host, Dr David Keyes, KAUST’s professor of applied mathematics, computational science director of the Extreme Computing Research Centre and cochair of the upcoming Third EAGE Workshop on High Performance Computing (1-4 October, Athens, Greece).


Emily’s time at KAUST was packed full of interesting activities and meetings. She met with Dr Tariq Alkhalifah, professor of geophysics at KAUST, and presenter of the EAGE EET on ‘Full Waveform Inversion: Where are the Anisotropic Parameters Hiding?’ She toured the KAUST Supercomputing Laboratory with the computational scientist lead Dr Saber Feki. This was particularly interesting as it houses the ‘Shaheen II’ supercomputer. Last but not least, Dias Urozayev, Ahmed Saad and Ayrat Abdullin, members of the KAUST EAGE Student Chapter, took Emily on a tour including the Science Museum. Before leaving, Emily made sure that a donation of EAGE books had been delivered to the KAUST library.

Thomas Finkbeiner (KAUST) and Emily Bell (EAGE).



Encore for rock physics workshop in Abu Dhabi


ncouraged by the success of previous events, a Fourth EAGE Workshop on Rock Physics is being held in Abu Dhabi on 1113 November 2017 at the Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort & Spa. This year’s theme will be the role of Rock Physics in Reservoir Modelling and Simulation, making it truly multi-disciplinary in nature. The workshop will cover a broad spectrum of topics, spanning geology, geophysics, petrophysics, geomechanics, reservoir engineering and integrated field management. Opening the workshop will be Dr Ibraheem Assa’adan, vice president, exploration, Saudi Aramco. And headlining the technical sessions will be keynote presentations from Dr Michel Kemper, director, research & innovation, Ikon Science and Prof Dr Tapan Mukerji associate professor, Standford University. A few practical examples are discussed below which may sound familiar to potential participants and encourage them to contribute. In an oil company setting, has your field development team conducted an integrated 4D time-lapse seismic study where you incorporated rock physics models into your static and dynamic reservoir models? Perhaps you have

been inferring model properties from field data, generating forecasts from model, or both, as you progressed through the project lifecycle. It may have been applied to refining the team’s sedimentological and stratigraphic understanding of a complex carbonate system. Perhaps you use rock physics in a petrophysical setting to facilitate novel rock type classification? As a researcher, academic or technical specialist, perhaps you are pushing the frontiers of full waveform inversion, anisotropic rock modelling, and uncertainty quantification, or tackling the challenging geological environments associated with massive offshore carbonates, unconventional basins, naturally/induced fractured systems, to list a few. You could be developing rigorous theoretical and computational methods from statistical machine learning, or perhaps performing complex experimental rock physics in the laboratory. Increasingly, field managers are recognizing the value of rock physics, and have employed rock physics workflows in a decision management role, such as to maximize the value of information and minimize risk associated with an operational decision, utilizing the integrated rock physics workflow as appropriate.

Readers are highly encouraged to draw on their expertise and skillset to identify and illustrate the value that rock physics has added to their project, regardless of the discipline they belong to. In addition to the workshop technical programme, a short course is scheduled. Dr Per Avseth (NTNU) will present ‘From cradle to the grave – the rock physics life story of a clastic sediment, and its significance in QI studies’. It will briefly demonstrate the link between the various geological processes and rock physical properties, and then show a few case examples where it is important to take into account the combined burial and rock physics modelling. Delegates can also look forward to an in-depth tour of the ADNOC Research and Innovation Centre (ADRIC) at The Petroleum Institute, Khalifa University of Science and Technology, which is a research centre focused on the energy industry of Abu Dhabi. Both the short course and ADRIC tour will take place on Saturday 11 November and are included in the registration fee. Registration is open, so please visit the website for more information or contact the EAGE Middle East Office for details

Student lecture tour is a hit in Egypt and road construction sites; location and identification of utilities and unexploded ordnance; minerals resources; waste site characterization; contaminate plume delineation; and forensic investigations. All these applications and others were touched upon during the lecture series.

Enthusiastic students with Prof El-Kaliouby.


ur first student lecture tour (SLT) in Egypt has proved to be a catalyst for student interest in the activities of EAGE with a number of requests to set up new student chapters at Egyptian universities. Credit for this goes to Prof Hesham El-Kaliouby who embarked on the first SLT in Africa and the Middle East to present electromagnetic (EM) methods for near surface geophysics. Since Spring 2017, Prof El-Kaliouby has visited


four EAGE student chapters in Egypt. At the universities of Alexandria, Damanhour, Zagazig and Helwan. The events attracted a large number of students in interactive sessions explaining the principles of EM techniques and their applications. Students were excited to be introduced to the wide spectrum of applications including hydrogeological and environmental studies; geotechnical and engineering investigations of buildings

Prof El-Kaliouby reports being approached by many students who are interested to know more and do research in EM for water, minerals and oil exploration. The obvious success of these events has encouraged other institutions in Egypt to approach the EAGE to host the SLT in their student chapters. These universities are requesting help to establish new chapters so that they can host SLTs. EAGE Suez University Student Chapter has also asked for the SLT to be featured as part of IPGC’17, an international petroleum and geoscience conference which it is organizing. Meanwhile EAGE is busy arranging the second part of the tour during the fall of 2017 in African and Middle Eastern universities.



Another workshop opportunity to address issues in naturally fractured reservoirs


ollowing the success of previous events EAGE is now planning the third workshop on Naturally Fractured Reservoirs to take place in Oman in February 2018. This year’s theme will be on ‘Static and Dynamic Model Calibration, over the entire Life-of-Field’, making it truly multidisciplinary in nature. The workshop will cover a broad spectrum of topics, spanning geology, geophysics, petrophysics, geomechanics, reservoir engineering and integrated field management. There are three major themes. The first is - What makes a good analogue for calibration? Analogues for calibrating models come from a variety of sources; classical outcrop studies, laboratory experiments, flow modelling studies, and field surveys. Each analogue provides data at different dimensional-scales that aim to reduce uncertainty. Key questions include: When can we transfer learning from analogue studies to improve the calibration of a specific reservoir model? and How can we best extract general rules, that can be applied to calibrate a broad range of naturally fractured reservoir models? The second main theme is - What scale do we need to build a model that we can calibrate? Static and dynamic models are typically built at differ-

Rocks have their story to tell...

ent scales. Various data sources, including seismic, well-logs, discrete fracture network models, and analogue studies, can all contribute to model calibration by providing information at different dimensional-scales. When performing a staticto-dynamic transformation, the data undergoes both upscaling and downscaling. Key questions include:What is the optimal dimensional-scale for building a reservoir model, to best integrate the available data for model calibration? and Should this scale vary over the course of field life, as more data becomes available? Thirdly we need to ask: How do we use dynamic data to calibrate? Increasingly, reservoirs are monitored in realtime in digital oilfields. This provides ample dynamic data, including downhole pressures, well rates, 4D seismic, tracer tests, stress states, and

produced water chemistry. This data samples the reservoir geology at different spatial and temporal scales. Key questions include: How we can best use these various data sources, in possible combination with assisted history matching workflows, to improve the calibration of naturally fractured reservoir models, throughout field life? and, How can we quantify the associated risk and uncertainty when predicting future reservoir performance? Everyone with an interest is highly encouraged to attend this industry-leading workshop. Whether you work in an oil company, E&P consultancy, service company, or university setting, the workshop will develop ‘Best Practice’, and explore state of the art workflows, thus spanning both Industry implementation and strategic R&D. Registration will open 1 November 2017; make sure you book.

Hydrocarbon seals in Middle East E&P on the agenda at Abu Dhabi workshop


ssues with hydrocarbon seals from Pre-Cambrian to Tertiary including seal detection and capacity assessment will be up for discussion during the Second EAGE/AAPG Workshop on Hydrocarbon Seals of the Middle East scheduled for 16-19 April 2018 in Abu Dhabi. The three-day event provides participants with the opportunity to share knowledge, case studies, techniques and workflows in order to better understand hydrocarbon seals in Middle East E&P. Seals are a fundamental element of any hydrocarbon accumulation, and can control trap integrity, migration and charge volumes; the lateral and vertical distribution of hydrocarbons in a trap; percent fill (or spill) of a reservoir; and the flow of hydrocarbons from the

trap during production. As such the long-term economic success or failure of an exploration to development project is very dependent on seal risking. Thus, consideration of subsurface hydrocarbon seals should have a high priority early on in any subsurface evaluation programme. In many areas, despite the clear importance of seals, they often remain the least studied and integrated element of the petroleum system and are also subject to lasting dogmas (e.g. the thicker the seal the greater its capacity to seal). Elements that contribute to making seals effective, such as lithology, their brittle-ductile nature, the hydrocarbon column length, the pressure regime and trap type will be reviewed. Both vertical and lateral seals must be identi-


fied when exploring for subtle and stratigraphic traps. In the workshop, seals created by faults and other types will be reviewed. This is typically a multi-disciplinary task requiring geosciences and engineering to collaborate on both dynamic and static data. In many areas of the Middle East our approach to understanding seals varies and it is now time to come together, share what we think and we know through the exchange of workflow, technique, and case study examples. The Call for Abstracts is open until 5 January 2018. Those interested are encouraged to submit their papers before the deadline. Contact the Middle East office or visit the EAGE website for more details.



Why Boot Camp is a great career move Amongst the participants at the first EAGE Middle East Land Acquisition Boot in 2015 was Vladimir Shipilin at the time completing an MSc in geology at Ludwig Maximilian University (LMU) in Munich. Here he describes the Boot Camp experience, his earlier student days in Uzbekistan and what it felt like to be a winner of the GeoQuiz final held during the student programme at the EAGE Paris 2017 Conference & Exhibition. also got acquainted with the local culture when visiting a local folk festival that took place in Al Ain. The 2017 edition in Al Ain this November continues work begun in 2015. Would you like to be there? Absolutely! The great thing about the Boot Camp is that each year it focuses on solving a different geologic problem in the region. Besides providing a wonderful opportunity to learn more about the geology of the UAE, it offers a welcome space for networking as it gathers fellow geologists from around the world.

Vladimir Shipilin - from Tashkent to Munich and still on the move.

How did attending the 2015 Boot Camp come about, and how were you sponsored? I have always kept an eye on EAGE student activities ever since my first EAGE conference in Copenhagen in 2012. Once I discovered on the EAGE Students website that there was a chance to get hands-on geophysical experience in the Arabian Desert, I knew I had to participate. Such an opportunity combined with my love for desolate terrains motivated me to apply. Our Boot Camp was generously sponsored by ADNOC, the Petroleum Institute in Abu Dhabi and Schlumberger. Tell us about some of the Boot Camp activities, and how the experience was valuable Four days of the Boot Camp were filled with various activities. On the first day, we learnt about the geology of the Al Ain area and I got a chance to see the world famous Semail Ophiolite. The following days were spent in the desert near Oman Mountains where we learned first-hand about the principles of seismic acquisition. After the field work, we had discussions with instructors from the Petroleum Institute about quality control of the acquired data. The Boot Camp was a unique experience as it allowed me to put my theoretic knowledge into practice on a real 2D seismic survey conducted by Schlumberger. I


From Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, you were able to take a year studying at the University of Minnesota in the US. What did the application involve and what are such visits meant to achieve? That was an exchange programme sponsored by the US Department of State. I had to go through a tough selection process, which included three essays, an interview and an English language test. But it was definitely worth it! Studying abroad gave me a different perspective on my professional and personal qualities. Being completely absorbed by a foreign academic and cultural environment helped me to gain not only more knowledge and skills but also learn more about myself. I think this is what such visits are meant to achieve. It is through this experience my true passion for geology began, and experiencing a real winter was a bonus! What did you learn from being president of the Uzbekistan EAGE Student Chapter? My structural geology professor loved quoting Mark Twain: ‘The secret of getting ahead is getting started’. In 2012, after the conference in Copenhagen, I initiated the Student Chapter at my home university. During my time as its president I learnt the lesson that you need to take the initiative to make things happen. My university colleagues and I managed to organize field trips, workshops and discussions with industry professionals to attract new members and have the Chapter developing successfully.

You have been studying in Germany for the last three years. What are your future plans, and will they include working in Russia? I am currently applying for PhD positions in applied geoscience at European universities. Being originally from Uzbekistan, I have never lived in Russia, however I have a great cultural connection with the country and many of my close relatives live there. In the long term, I might consider eventually moving to Russia. How did you form the winning GeoQuiz team with colleagues from Imperial College London, and were you surprised to win? To be honest, I was not even sure if I would be participating in the GeoQuiz until it was about to start. Being the only representative of the University of Munich, I did not have a team of my own. Luckily, two students from Imperial College London were missing a third participant, so I joined them. The victory came unexpectedly to us because our team was mistakenly given the name of a different university and we didn’t even know that we were in the lead until the very last round, when the mistake was finally revealed. It actually helped us to win, as we could concentrate on the questions without worrying about maintaining the leadership. One of your personal interests is cinema. Which are your favourite movies? I have a wide range of movies that I really like, such as Hollywood epics Star Wars and the Lord of the Rings, to Scandinavian and Iranian arthouse. I would have to say my favourite is ‘The Fountain’ by Darren Aronofsky.

Surprise Geo-Quiz winner: Shipilin with Imperial College team members at EAGE Paris.



PDO enlists university resources as part of future development strategy


etroleum Development Oman (PDO) has signed research and development agreements with Sohar and A’sharqiyah Universities to help resolve some of its complex technical challenges. The MoUs were signed by Prof Barry Winn, vice chancellor, Sohar University, Prof Fouad Chedid, deputy vice chancellor for academic affairs at A’sharqiyah University and Abdul-Amir Al Ajmi, external affairs and value creation director, PDO. It is hoped the MoUs will help PDO further develop its competitive delivery by reducing costs, increasing production and reserves while operating in a safer and greener environment. The collaboration is also intended to support PDO’s effort to boost in-country value by advancing academic and vocational development and increasing the share of the oil and gas industry’s wealth retained in Oman. PDO will fund the universities to assist it in three key areas: enhanced oil recovery, water management and energy efficiency and security,

Abdul-Amir Al Ajmi, external affairs and value creation director, PDO.

the latter by encouraging renewable energy and energy-efficient technologies. They will also work together to encourage Omani small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and entrepreneurs to carry out their basic technological research, test-proof their conceptual thoughts and innovative ideas and develop early-stage technology in the universities’ laboratories prior to any potential future commercial agreements. PDO will assist with the establishment of technology centres at both universities. Its own ex-

perts will be given access to these research hubs and run and develop teaching programmes. The agreements will run for three years and also pave the way for PDO staff to enrol on BSc, MSc and PhD degrees and other courses at the universities. Additionally, PDO and the academic institutions will exchange best practices on health, safety and environment (HSE), lean efficiency programmes and governance frameworks. The company will also become a member of the universities’ advisory boards. Al Ajmi said: ‘PDO is working hard to establish technology clusters across Oman with key research partners who can help us to address some of our key challenges. These collaborations not only give us access to innovative solutions and the best technology and tools but also enable students to learn more about the needs of the Sultanate’s economy and their potential employers. This partnership is a win-win for the national oil and gas sector and Omani academia.’

7-14 NOVEMBER 2017 AL AIN, UAE A P P LY N O W ! A P P L I CAT I O N D E A D L I N E : 7 O C TO B E R 2 0 1 7

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23/08/17 11:04



Daniel field investors pull out

Iraq puts nine concessions on the block


Oil processing in Iraq.


raq has launched a licensing round of nine onshore and offshore blocks designated for exploration and rehabilitation projects. Oil Minister Al-Luiebi said that the operations will include the onshore exploration blocks of Khudher Al-Mai, Jebel Sanam  and  Um-Qasr, which are on the Iraqi-Kuwaiti border, and onshore exploration blocks Sindbad,  Huwaiza, Shihabi, Zurbatia  and  Naft Khana on the Iraqi-Iranian

border. The offshore exploration blocks are in Iraqi regional waters of the Arab gulf. Exploration operations will include seismic, drilling of the exploration and evaluation wells, mine and unexploded bomb removal programmes, and crude oil production. The Iraqi government is looking for best utilization for the free and associated gas and providing the funding, expertise, technology, equipment, machines and services.



Turkey joins Iran production


urkey’s Unit International says it has signed a $7 billion agreement with Russia’s state-owned Zarubezhneft and Iran’s Ghadir Investment Holding to drill for oil and natural gas in Iran. Total reserves at the three oil fields involved in the agreement stand at 10 billion barrels, and the fields will produce 100,000  b/d, according to Unit International. The natural gas field is said to have production capacity of 75  billion  m3 per

New management gets to work on Al-Shaheen otal and  Qatar Petroleum  in July took over operatorship of the giant  Al-Shaheen offshore oil field  for a period of 25 years. The field, which produces 300,000 b/d of oil, will be operated by the North Oil Company (NOC), a partnership between Total (30%) and Qatar Petroleum (70%) established a year ago. Previous operator was Maersk Oil. Patrick Pouyanné, chairman and CEO of Total, said: ‘NOC will leverage its technical capabilities to optimize the exploitation of the complex Al-Shaheen oil field’. Located 80 km north of Ras Laffan, the Al-Shaheen field began production in 1994. The existing development consists of 30 platforms and 300 wells, and production from the field represents about half of Qatar’s oil production.

n what is said to be a blow to Israel’s energy independence hopes, Isramco Negev and  Modiin Energy are to return their licences which were poised to develop the  Daniel natural gas field in the Mediterranean offshore Israel. Lack of investors was said to be one of the reasons for the withdrawal. Last year   a resource report suggested there could be an estimated total of  8.9 trillion ft3 (tcf) of natural gas at the Daniel East and West fields. The rights were said to being given up, among other things, ‘on assessments regarding the level of geological risk in the licences, the difficulties expected in commercialising the gas, if and when it is discovered, and the lack of interest by new investors.’ 

Patrick Pouyanné, chairman and CEO of Total.

The first phase of the development plan of Al Shaheen, consisting of the drilling of 56 new wells, will start this summer with the mobilization of the first two rigs, with a third one to be added at the beginning of next year. This first phase will be followed by two others over the next five years to further develop the field.

year. The natural gas extracted from the drilling will be equal to 1.5 times the 50 billion m3 of gas Turkey imports annually. The reserves would help meet Turkey’s gas demands for the next 150 years.

Trivia answer C - Unconformity



Magseis orders node tracking for Red Sea seabed seismic survey

Artemis Athene.


orwegian seabed seismic services company Magseis has chosen acoustic position-

ing equipment from UK-based Sonardyne to support its upcoming deep water ocean bottom seismic survey of the Red Sea for Saudi Aramco in partnership with Chinese geophysical contractor BGP.

Beginning in July, the S78 project with the Artemis Athene vessel is expected to last nine months and will involve the deployment of a large network of ocean bottom recording nodes. Each node will be accurately positioned using Sonardyne’s Ranger 2 USBL (Ultra-Short BaseLine) and Small Seismic Transponder (SST) technologies. Sonardyne says seismic surveillance surveys conducted using stationary receivers deployed on the seabed are becoming increasingly commonplace as geophysicists generally agree that this method delivers the highest possible definition imagery. Any uncertainty in node positions can blur these pictures and make the underlying reservoirs more difficult to spot. Sonardyne’s Ranger 2 USBL installed on a surface vessel, coupled with SSTs fitted close to each node, is designed to overcome this

problem by providing high quality, repeatable positioning in all water depths. In the Red Sea survey, Magseis will deploy its proprietary Marine Autonomous Seismic System (MASS), which uses thousands of small nodes to create a grid pattern of receivers on the seabed. Magseis will attach the SSTs near to the nodes at regular intervals along the cable. Each SST will be tracked in real-time using the Ranger 2 GyroUSBL transceiver permanently installed on the vessel. Magseis has also ordered Sonardyne’s Lightweight Release Transponders (LRTs) and rope canisters to enable recovery of seafloor equipment following data acquisition. When commanded to do so, LRTs float back up to the surface, enabling the equipment to which they are attached, to be hauled up.

Full speed ahead on Leviathan


oble Energy is contracting the drillship ENSCO DS-7  to drill two wells and complete four production wells at the Leviathan field development offshore

Israel in the Mediterranean Sea. The contract is expected to begin in March 2018 and be completed in December 2018. The contract also includes four one-well priced customer

options that if fully exercised would extend the contract into 2020. For the project, ENSCO DS-7 will be upgraded with a second blowout preventer.

Shake-up ahead for ADNOC offshore concessions


bu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) is in advanced discussions with more than a dozen potential partners regarding an offshore concession due to expire next March, currently operated by the Abu Dhabi Marine Operating Company (ADMA-OPCO). The potential partners are a mix of existing concession holders in ADNOC’s offshore fields and new participants. The concession involves a mix of the Lower Zakum field, Umm Shaif, Nasr, Umm Lulu and Satah Al Razboot (SARB) fields. ADNOC, on behalf of the Abu Dhabi government, will retain a 60% shareholding in the new concession areas. ADNOC recently unveiled the expansion of its strategic partnership model, as well as active management of its portfolio of assets. The company’s new approach builds on its flexible and enhanced operating model as well as its 2030 growth strategy across the Group. The existing ADMA-OPCO concession will be split into two, or more, conces-

sions with new terms to unlock greater value and increase partnership opportunities. Following ADNOC’s 2016 announcement to consolidate the offshore operations of ADMAOPCO and the Zakum Development Company (ZADCO), the new ADMA concessions and the existing Upper Zakum concession, operated by ZADCO, will be operated by the new integrated offshore company, capitalizing on operational synergies and enhanced performance. The consolidation of the two companies is due to be completed before the end of the year. As ADNOC looks to boost oil production capacity to 3.5 million b/d in 2018, offshore development is a strategic focus of the company. The existing concession area operated by ADMA-OPCO, which produces around 700,000 b/d of oil, is planned to have a production capacity of about 1.0 million b/d by 2021.


Existing shareholders in ADMA-OPCO are BP (14.67%), Total (13.33%) and JODCO (12%). The international shareholders in ZADCO are ExxonMobil (28%) and JODCO (12%). The Abu Dhabi Government, through ADNOC, has a 60% interest in both operating companies.

Umu Lulu Installation offshore Abu Dhabi.



Total signs up for next phase of South Pars field development


otal and the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC)  have signed a contract for the development and production of  phase 11 of South Pars (SP11), the world›s largest gas field. The project will have a production capacity of 2 billion cu3/d or 400,000  b/d of oil equivalent including condensate supplying the Iranian domestic market starting in 2021. 

Total, with a 50.1% interest, is the operator of the SP11 project under a 20-year contract agreed last year. The company’s partners are Chinese company CNPC (30%), and Petropars  (19.9%), a wholly owned subsidiary of NIOC. The project will cost up to $5 billion and production is expected to start within 40 months, Iran’s oil ministry said in a statement.

Middle East and Africa Event Calendar October 2017 01-Oct-17 - 04-Oct-17 Third EAGE Workshop on High Performance Computing for Upstream

19-Nov-17 - 21-Nov-17 Fourth EAGE Borehole Geophysics Workshop Abu Dhabi, UAE |

Athens, Greece |

02-Oct-17 - 04-Oct-17 First EAGE/ASGA Petroleum Exploration Workshop

Manama, Bahrain |

22-Nov-17 Short Course on Advanced Techniques in Borehole Seismic

25 March 18 - 28 March 18 8th North Africa Petroleum Exhibition & Conference

Abu Dhabi, UAE |

Luanda, Angola |

08-Oct-17 - 13-Oct-17 EAGE Workshop on the Mesozoic Intrashelf Basins of the Middle East Ras al-Khaima, UAE |

Oran, Algeria |

27-Nov-17 - 28-Nov-17 AAPG/EAGE Tight Reservoirs Workshop

April 2018 16-Apr-18 - 19-Apr-18 Second EAGE/AAPG Hydrocarbon Seals Workshop

Manama, Bahrain |

January 2018

Abu Dhabi, UAE |

09-Oct-17 - 11-Oct-17 Second EAGE Borehole Geology Workshop

30-Jan-18 - 31-Jan-18 SPE/EAGE Workshop on Tar Mats & Heavy Oil

St. Julians, Malta |

Abu Dhabi, UAE |

November 2017

March 2018 05-Mar-18 - 08-Mar-18 GEO2018 - 13th Middle East Geosciences Conference

23-Apr-18 - 25-Apr-18 14th Tunisian Petroleum Exploration and Production Conference Tunis, Tunisia |

February 2018

6-Nov-17 - 9-Nov-17 Third EAGE Eastern Africa Petroleum Geoscience Forum

5-Feb-18 - 7-Feb-18 Third EAGE Workshop on Naturally Fractured Reservoirs

Maputo, Mozambique |

Muscat, Oman |

7-Nov-17 - 14-Nov-17 Third EAGE Middle East Boot Camp 2017 - Imaging a Foreland Basin

12-Feb-18 - 14-Feb-18 EGYPS 18

25-Apr-18 - 26-Apr-18 SPE/EAGE Geomechanics Workshop Abu Dhabi, UAE |

Cairo, Egypt |

Al Ain, UAE |

11-Nov-17 - 13-Nov-17 Fourth EAGE Workshop on Rock Physics

20-Feb-18 - 21-Feb-18 Second SPE/EAGE Reservoir Lifecycle Management

Abu Dhabi, UAE |

Abu Dhabi, UAE |



Middle East Newsletter 2017 - 2  
Middle East Newsletter 2017 - 2