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Issue 1  2017

Paint your path to creativity By Claudia SteinerLuckabauer, co-chair, Student Affairs Committee


f you decided on a career in the oil and gas business, you for sure thought about whether the industry can sustain and contribute to the growing energy demand of the world. But really the question should be a different one, namely; can you contribute to the oil and gas business in a way to support the upcoming energy demand of the world? There is no doubt, new ways must be found and new techniques must be applied to do more than what we do already. And for that, we need you, our young hires.

We need your creativity and your open mind, and would like to invite you to look beyond your own noses – or textbooks.

In their day, French artists such as the famous painter Claude Monet took an original path and this has stood the test of time. Not only in painting, but also musicians such as Claude Debussy, used non-traditional scales to break new ground and compose music which has transcended their

lifetimes. These successes didn’t come from out of the blue, they were grounded on a fundamental education. Each artist has to learn the techniques involved first. By getting better over time through learning and doing, the young artist can control each stroke with the paintbrush and finds which colours harmonize. Only after controlling his abilities, can the painter finally produce an image to the point where the painting really expresses what the artist wants to deliver. For your career, this can be quite similar. You are the painter of your career. Do you like the painting as it is at the moment or would you like to enhance it? Would you like to use new techniques, would you like to add a fresher touch by using new colours? What is your goal, where do you want to be? There is a French saying ‘Chacun est l’artisan de sa fortune’ which basically means that you are the artist painting your own life. So, we invite you to the upcoming 79th EAGE Conference & Exhibition Student Programme in Paris, France, to ‘paint your own path’ in the Student Court. Jobs in the industry are getting more complicated, need more insight and need more openness to deliver the right answer. Creativity will be the key to unconventional solutions to unconventional problems. The drawback of being creative, particularly when you are working in a team, is to integrate ideas in ways that don’t offend existing and proven methods, working solutions or mindsets. There is an opportunity in the FIELD Challenge to show what you know but also how your creativity can overcome existing challenges by being a competitor. The contest provides a real data example of what you may be faced with in real life. We are curious to see how you talented young people can show creativity mixed with competence. A jury will choose the winners who receive their reRead more on page 2 ➤

Let the Student Programme in Paris make an impression on you


aris is a city of arts and known particularly for the Impressionists. This is what inspired EAGE to introduce ‘Paint your Path’ as the theme for the Student Programme of the 79th EAGE Conference & Exhibition, taking place from 12-15 June 2017. Especially in these challenging times the Student Programme is intended to help you chose a direction in your career path in geoscience and engineering. The Student Task Force has once again selected some outstanding contributions to the Student Programme, for instance a workshop on the topic ‘New Trends in Geomodelling’ and a short course on the topic ‘Integrating Concepts for Source Rock Deposition’. There are plenty of other highlights for students to appreciate in Paris. The Student Programme starts with the FIELD Challenge finals on Sunday 11 June and will be held among the eight best and last standing teams. During the finals, the teams will present their FIELD development plans to an expert jury. The winning team, Read more on page 2 ➤

What's inside Jesper’s blog


Geoscientist who dances to her own tune 


Field Challenge update


Industry News  and more



Paint your path to creativity

Let the Student Programme in Paris make an impression on you

Continued from p.1.

Continued from p.1.

wards at the prestigeous Opening Ceremony of EAGE’s Annual Meeting. Be part of it! EAGE would like to encourage you all, to be the artist who is painting the path of your own career. That is the idea behind our extensive, dedicated Student Programme. There is an option to present a technical paper in front of an international audience, or you can go and pick up the atmosphere and know-how from technical papers given by experts all over the world. Add colour to your career path by doing workshops or short courses, especially designed for your needs. The meeting also enables you to enhance your social networks by participating in the Networking Café or the exhibition tour. One very popular event is the EAGE Geo-Quiz. Make sure you don’t miss this fast and funny quiz with awesome prizes for the participating teams. I hope we see each other at the upcoming EAGE Annual Conference and really look forward to meeting you creative and motivated young people!

announced during the Opening Ceremony on 12 June, will be invited as VIP guests for a trip to Total’s headquarters in Pau, France. Join us in the Networking Café on Tuesday afternoon in the Student Court, it’s the ideal place for growing your network, sharing experiences with your fellow students and an opportunity to meet up with industry experts in an informal and friendly atmosphere. After the Networking Café it’s time to put on your fancy dress and travel to Elysee Montmartre for a great student party. The motivational speaker is an expert in cognitive science which has long shown that we are not naturally good at creativity – we tend to be fixed by prior knowledge and by the definition of things. Recent advances in design theory provide us with formal models, methods and processes that help to diagnose fixation, to understand its causes and to overcome them. These theories, methods and

New team invigorates Saint Petersburg chapter

EAGE Student Newsletter Student Affairs Committee Pierre-Olivier Lys co-chair (Total) Claudia Steiner-Luckabauer co-chair (HOT Engineering GmbH) Giancarlo Bernasconi (Politecnico di Milano) Roger Clark (University of Leeds) Thomas Finkbeiner (KAUST) Aaron Girard (University of Western Australia) Anne Jardin (IFP Energies Nouvelles) Arjan Kamp (Total) Community Manager (Students) Kirsten Brandt ( Account Manager Corporate Relations Daan van Ommen ( Submission of articles Newsletter on the Web (


processes are today valid for creation in engineering as well as in science and art. They enlighten new forms of leadership and collective creativity. Highlight of the programme is the EAGE GeoQuiz which will be held in the Student Court on Wednesday afternoon. Up to 30 teams, including the regional Geo-Quiz winners from all over world, will gather to put their knowledge and skills to the test. Registration can be done beforehand in the Student Court, but spaces are limited. On Thursday we close the Student Programme by giving away three travel grants to Copenhagen 2018, you can win one of these by competing in the Student Challenge. Those interested in learning more about student activities offered by EAGE, should join our Students Facebook and LinkedIn groups. It’s a great way to find out more about the development of the EAGE Student Programme during Paris 2017, upcoming events, reports and student-related news. Feel free to make use of the hashtags: #EAGEPARIS2017 #EAGESTUDENTS.

EAGE Student Chapter members in Saint Petersburg.


new leadership team is in place at the Saint Petersburg State University EAGE Student Chapter, which was founded in

2014. Anton Gomonov, a first year PhD student in the Institute of Earth Sciences, is the new president with Anna Titova, a second year Master’s student at the Physics faculty, the vice president. The Student Chapter itself is broadly divided between physicists and geologists. Happily there are an equal number of Bachelor, Master and PhD students in the Student Chapter providing a great opportunity to share knowledge and experience between young and older students. In 2014 Prof Valentina Zhemchugova from Moscow State University presented a lecture on

‘Reservoir Sedimentology of Carbonate Deposits’ as part of the EAGE Education Tour. Many students and oil company representatives attended this event. The Student Chapter is also actively involved in such EAGE student activities as the Geo-Quiz and student programmes at various conferences. Three students won travel grants for the 79th EAGE Conference & Exhibition in Paris from the Geo-Quiz event at the Saint Petersburg International Conference & Exhibition in 2016. Most chapter members take part in EAGE conferences in Russia and abroad. For instance, extended abstracts have been submitted for 79th EAGE Conference & Exhibition 2017 in Paris. The Student Chapter cooperates with Mining University EAGE Student Chapter and Saint Petersburg State University SPE Student Chapter. These chapters have already agreed to hold joint meetings, quizzes and conferences. This is intended to help increase knowledge and experience for students in their future careers and public performances. The Saint Petersburg students say they intend to generate closer relationships with Student Chapters from other Russian cities as well as foreign countries.



Why not rock this year’s Geological Boot Camp


lans are afoot for another EAGE Geological Boot Camp, and we would like some of you to join us. Our first event last August was very successful, and so we will return to Spain in August. The aim of the Boot Camp is to provide participants with valuable field experience of industry-style geological exploration techniques. All the exercises and experiments are designed by the Institut Cartogràfic i Geològic Catalunya (ICGC) and the University of Barcelona. As you would expect, both institutes have exceptional knowledge of the local region and its geological settings. They will be on hand to guide participants through several activities in the outcrops throughout the week. At the end of the programme, those attending will not only have gained practical experience but also interact with other young professionals, students and professors from universities as well as industry experts. The camp will identify different plays and focus on a Cretaceous play for a PBE exercise: making play element maps of structures, a reservoir, seal and source rock as well as devising a final Cretaceous play map. In addition, participants will make a volumetric estimate of an anticline. A conceptual reservoir model will be constructed within the exposed reservoir itself. It’s a great opportunity to bring your knowledge of geological theory into practice and meet fellow students from other universities. One of last year’s Boot Camp members, Jesper Dramsch, said: ‘I truly believe this brought me up to speed with many geologic concepts and play evaluations. I met some bright and sympathetic peers and as a bonus, I was envied for the nice sun tan I had acquired. Absolutely worth it!’ Intrigued? The camp will take place from 27 August – 1 September in the Spanish Pyrenees. We invite young professionals and postgraduate (PhD and MSc) geological students to apply for a spot in the camp. Of course, interested geophysicists are also more than welcome to apply. In return EAGE will provide local transport from Barcelona to the Pyrenees and back, safety equipment, accommodation, breakfasts, lunch and most of the dinners. Young professional enrollment can be confirmed by sending an e-mail to, before the deadline of 30 June. Student application is open from 1 February – 30 May 2017. Students may apply by visiting the Learning Geoscience website ( We look forward to welcoming you in Barcelona in August!

Jesper Dramsch is a Masters degree student who recently started his PhD at DTU in Copenhagen. He frequently writes for his blog ‘The Way of the Geophysicist’ on his experiences as a student in the geoscience community.

Why machine learning?


e live in an era where Google, Facebook, and Microsoft release their artificial intelligence algorithms readily and freely to the public to play around with. Meetings will often have someone wonder if we can ‘solve the problem with machine learning (ML)’, and comments that seismic data is ‘big data’ are abundant across the board. In oil and gas, we are somewhat slower in adapting to new technology, as the risk inherent of failure is also higher than a misguided Google search. But see for yourself what is starting to happen. The SEG held a contest to predict facies from well logs and the EAGE has allocated time for a course in geostatistics and machine learning during the Paris Annual Meeting in June. They were even nice enough to reschedule, to give everyone time to be able to attend our hackathon that will heavily lean towards ML. It’s hard to explain what is easy for a computer and what is not. At the university, I learned that computers are terrible at recognizing patterns, but here we are today with algorithms recognizing cats after ‘watching’ hours of YouTube videos. It’s easy to overpromise on artificial intelligence and this is exactly what happened to AI research before 1987. Subsequently, funding was cut and research continued in the shade of unfulfilled expectations, aptly named the ‘AI winter’. Today, we see a blossoming of new opportunities for ML in G&G. Considering the best solution from the SEG ML contest had a 64% prediction accuracy on unlabelled and unseen data, I believe it will be important to learn about and outline the limitations of AI together with the potential. It’s easy for anyone to take the Andrew Ng online course in ML and build their first model within minutes with open source software, or just join me at the aforementioned events in Paris. This is the time to delve into this exciting field but remember: winter is coming. Why would I say that? AI is the fabric of science fiction. It gets people excited and if you build a well thought-out solution to a hard-to-crack problem, you will generate hype. Will machine learning overcome the physical limitations of seismic data? No. Will it eradicate uncertainty in exploration? No.  Will it help turn a profit? Probably.  It’s not an end-all solution but a powerful tool that should not be missing in your toolbox as a researcher and engineer.

Taking stock during last year’s Boot Camp.




Geoscientist who dances to her own tune Milana Ayzenberg has a story to tell and it is not all about geoscience. Born in Russia, she did well in school, graduated from Novosibirsk State University, and after a Masters in mechanics, applied mathematics and informatics, went on to obtain a PhD in geophysics from NTNU, Trondheim. Milana now works for Statoil as a principal researcher, reservoir physics. Her accomplishments also include a starred sports career as an international ballroom dancer and trainer in Russia and Norway, which she no longer has the time to pursue. What inspired you to follow a career in the geosciences and the oil and gas industry in particular? My dad, who is a geophysicist! I actually wanted to do it my way, and started in fibre optics where they use high-precision numerical solutions to describe the propagation of soliton signals. It’s very difficult to see the physics of solitons behind the never-ending chase of numerical precision. So at some point during my BSc degree, I went to my dad and asked: ‘Can you tell me about your seismic waves? And this is where the journey began.’ How easy as a student was it to transition from Russia to Norway? Changing cultures and places is never easy. It took some time before Norway started feeling like home to me. The Norwegians speak fluent English, so there is no language barrier as such. It also helps that PhD students are not treated like students. They are temporary university employees. The salary allows for a good quality of life, and travelling internationally is a normal practice. So I got to see many countries and made a lot of professional contacts during my PhD time. How would you characterize work and cultural differences between Norway and your own country? Russia and Norway are different as night and day, if you ask me. Like one of my Norwegian friends said, Norway is a consensus-driven society. Everybody’s opinion needs to be accounted for before a decision is made. This also concerns important decisions made at work. It may take time before everyone agrees on the matter. On the positive side, this stimulates creativity. Russia, on the contrary, has a more pragmatic attitude to decision making. There is a clear line of responsibility, which makes it easier for me to understand what and when something needs to be done. The focus on timely deliveries is somewhat higher. Would you ever consider continuing your career in Russia? I have always been fascinated by Norway, slightly mysterious and perfectly described by the music of Edvard Grieg. So It’s not really a question for me where I want to be. I have grown so used to


Milana Ayzenberg today (left) and in dancing mode

yet have an alternative source of energy. That’s why I think the oil price will bounce back, and the demand for specialists will increase. Having said that, I have chosen a more universal education. With a background in applied maths, I still have some freedom of choice. My advice would be – think wider! It’s a win-win situation. You will feel more protected having other alternatives, and if you get a job in the oil business, your employer will also benefit from your multiple talents.


the Scandinavian work and life style that I cannot really imagine having things otherwise. What do you like about your current work, and what if any are the downsides? I like the mix of technical work and project management. I strongly believe in team work! We have a great team with different technical backgrounds and operational experiences. It’s up to us to make our days at work really exciting – both technically and socially. As for the downsides, it’s simply a difficult time in the oil industry. We have experienced more focus on deadlines and deliveries, less travelling for getting new aspirations, and less room for trying out blue sky ideas. I’m not sure how good this is in the long run. Where would you like to see your professional life in 10 years’ time? A CEO? Just kidding. Well, I have always dreamt of working offshore, to get my hands dirty and see how the core business from inside. We, who work in the subsurface disciplines, constantly look for drilling targets and plan wells. But we follow up drilling from the office, at best. So we’re not really there when they hit the oil column. And how great must this feel?! Given the current economic climate, would you recommend a student today to pursue a career in the oil business? Well, there is probably a short-term and a longterm answer to that. It’s scary to commit to the petroleum industry today when everybody sees people being laid off. And yet, upturns and downturns in the oil price have some periodicity. Some of them may look like a final one, but we do not

How did ballroom dancing become part of your like? I started dancing different styles when I was 4 (some of it I almost do not remember), but then I ended up watching a ballroom dance competition live at the age of 14. I knew the same day what I wanted to do. Ballroom became my passion. I even regarded becoming a professional dancer, but considered this path too uncertain to pursue. Dancing became a hobby until a few years ago when family and kids became my number one priority. What were the personal highlights of your competitive sports career? These must be the finals of national and international championships. Actually, my main achievement is the great couples whom we trained from scratch and brought up to the top of European competitions. Given your experience, do you have a view about the relationship between a sports discipline and work? Competitive sports teach you how to structure your work and achieve a lot in a limited time. In addition, elite sports form a competitive environment for performance junkies. You always know how you perform and what your ranking is. I like the direct feedback of a fair competition. People don’t win by chance. Winning requires extreme discipline and dedication. The difficulty of our work in the oil business, at least for me, is that we seldom get direct feedback on how we perform. It’s difficult to know exactly when and how one needs to change something in the working style to do a better job. We could perhaps learn something from competitive sports?



SLT presenter is advocate for EM and Near Surface Geoscience Hesham El-Kaliouby is due to present a student lecture tour (SLT) in the Middle East and Africa on near surface electromagnetics. Hesham is professor of geophysics at the National Research Center (NRC) of Egypt having previously worked in various research and consultancy positions at Sultan Qaboos University (SQU), Saudi Geological Survey (SGS), Lancaster University, UK, and King Abdulaziz University (KAU). He received his PhD degree in geophysics (2001) from Cairo University through a joint education programme with the University of Arizona, where he also served for two years as a postdoctoral researcher. In 2014, Hesham inspired the founding of the EAGE Student Chapter at SQU and was the first faculty advisor. In 2015 SQU was voted second best EAGE student chapter. Why you chose to follow geophysics as a career, and did you family approve? Geophysics is one of the most exciting careers as you always work with different problems that challenge you to explore and come up with solution or interpretation. It also serves humanity by discovering natural resources that make our lives more convenient. Family approved it as they found me enjoying working in this career. Actually, It’s another challenge to balance between career and family. How did EM become a special interest to you? When I was a student, I noticed that all the attention is going towards seismic methods for O&G exploration. I was interested to explore and study in depth other geophysical techniques. So, I did my MSc and PhD in EM. I found that it’s a very interesting technique that has a lot of applications and research opportunities. Is EM sufficiently recognized as a new surface tool, and how does it compare with other near surface imaging technology? EM is one of the leading geophysical tools in surface, airborne, shipborne and borehole surveys. The beauty of EM is that it can be applied from many platforms as it does not require a direct contact with the ground as in inductive EM techniques. Are there some special applications of EM in the Middle East/Africa? One of the challenges in arid regions such as the Middle East and Africa is the exploration for

groundwater and mineral resources. These targets can directly be detected by EM techniques. EM has recently been used to support seismic method for hydrocarbon exploration, where seismic surveys are expensive or ineffective as in extreme terrain or subsalt imaging. Joint inversion of EM and seismic data has proved to be a successful technique to get a reliable model of the subsurface. What will be the main objectives of your student lecture tour, and what would you like students to take away from the course? I would like to share my knowledge and enthusiasm about EM with the students and open new horizons for them to consider it in their careers in geophysics. The take home message is that there are a lot of research and career opportunities in EM that require enthusiastic and talented young people to pursue. What is the role of the NRC in Cairo where you work? The NRC is one of the main research centres in Egypt and Middle East that works in many research disciplines including geophysics and earth sciences. One of its roles is to connect academia with industry to better serve the community. As an academic, how do you stay in touch with technology developments? Subscription to regional and international societies like the EAGE, enable me to follow up the latest research trends and technology developments through reading the technical journals

Dr Hesham El-Kaliouby with EM field geophysics class


Dr Hesham El-Kaliouby

and attending annual meetings and workshops that present the state of the art in Geosciences. What prompted you to found the EAGE student chapter at SQU? When I joined Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) in 2012, there was an SEG chapter and I noticed that students were excited to participate in geophysical activities. I worked towards founding another geophysical chapter to expand the opportunity for many students to take part in more activities like SLT, GeoQuiz, Field Challenge, student forums, and workshops. SQU Chapter hosted a student forum for Middle East universities in 2014 and won the second best EAGE chapter in 2015. Are there sufficient job opportunities for students to follow a career in Near Surface Geoscience? With the decline in oil prices and the limited work opportunities in O&G industry, near surface geophysics lends itself as a good career in geophysics as it has a wide spectrum of applications including but not limited to hydrogeological and environmental studies; geotechnical and engineering investigations of buildings and road construction sites; location and identification of utilities and unexploded ordnance; minerals resources; waste site characterization; contaminate plume delineation; and forensic investigations.



Make EAGE membership part of your world

Students enjoy Geo-Quiz contest at EAGE Vienna 2016.


AGE prides itself on being an international association spanning the globe, and this is definitely illustrated by the vast spread of our student members – nowadays, you can find EAGE student members in over 70 countries. So, as student members, chances are you will be able to network with students from Aberdeen to Auckland, and Ibadan to Irkutsk, making your

student membership an international affair indeed! In this day and age – no matter whether you are thinking of continuing your career in academia or industry – future projects, colleagues and assignments will likely be together with colleagues from all sorts of backgrounds and nationalities. If you are keen to start working on your international student network now, EAGE is a prime place to become involved. The student programme at the 79th EAGE Conference & Exhibition attracts hundreds of students from 45 different nationalities. A good place to start working on your network, right? In addition to the international network, did you ever explore any of your other membership benefits? One that can be extremely handy if you are working on your essays, or indeed that presentation you would like to submit for our workshop or conference, is EarthDoc. The EarthDoc database is home to an ever-growing number of papers, articles and abstracts, helping you to place your work into a wider scientific context

and support your research. With over 60,000 papers, there is plenty to investigate. If you are in the later stages of your studies, 2017 may be a good year to start exploring our Young Professionals and Women in Geoscience and Engineering Special Interest Groups. The Young Professionals group is actively engaging people to help them bridge the proverbial gap between student and professional life. Our Women in Geoscience SIC recently established a dedicated mentoring programme to help out with this as well. Both have a special session at our annual conference to which all students are encouraged to participate. International networking, EarthDoc and our Special Interest Groups are just three ways to make the best of your student membership of EAGE. We encourage you to go to to further explore the membership benefits. Most of the membership benefits are only available after logging in, so do not forget to activate your account if you have not done so already!

ASEG Adelaide sets attendance record


he low oil price environment did nothing to impact the ASEG-PESA-AIG Conference in Adelaide. The event, held at the Adelaide Convention Centre, attracted a record of attendance of more than 800 participants confirming its status as Australia’s premier geoscience gathering. It was jointly hosted by the Australian Society of Exploration Geophysicists (ASEG), Petroleum Exploration

Society of Australia (PESA) and the Australian Institute of Geoscientists (AIG) with the theme ‘Interpreting the Past, Discovering the Future’. Representing EAGE was Rachel Moo from the Asia-Pacific office. She reports that many participants made their way to the EAGE booth on the exhibition floor. This year, EAGE and the local organizing committee worked more closely together.

From left to right: Linda Ford (SEG), Pak Randy (HAGI), Micki Allen (EEGS), Koya Suto (ASEG), Amit Kumar (SPG), Rachel Moo (EAGE) and Akihiko Chiba (SEGJ).


EAGE was honoured to bring Dr Yaoguo Li from the Colorado School of Mines to teach his course on ‘Gravity and Magnetic Methods for Oil & Gas and Mineral Exploration and Production’. The course received an excellent reception from Australian participants. In the regional Geo-Quiz, a trip to Paris became a dream come true for two geoscience students who had never met before this year’s ASEG-PESA-AIG Conference. Victoria Seesaha from Curtin University and Dennis Conway from Adelaide University teamed up to win the competition and the prize of attending next year’s 79th EAGE Conference & Exhibition in Paris and competing in the GeoQuiz global final. The next conference is to be called the Australian Exploration Geoscience Conference (AEGC 2018) and takes place in Sydney in January 2018. EAGE will be definitely be present at the next conference to show its support with a short course and the EAGE Regional Geo-Quiz.



Closing in on the EAGE FIELD Challenge finalists


two-day VIP visit to Total’s scientific headquarters in Pau, France. That’s the prize for the winning FIELD Challenge team. Together with travel grants and free tickets to the 79th EAGE Confer­ence & Exhibition in Paris, there is much at stake and the excitement is building among the 10 FIELD Challenge teams still standing. To qualify for the FIELD Challenge 2017, EAGE invited multi-disciplinary teams of students to unleash their creativity and technical excellence to interpret a Total exploration dataset and generate the most attractive prospects. In an application of around 3000 words, the teams were required to describe the reason why a particular area was selected as more prospective based on their interpretation of the dataset. One of the judges, Dr Thomas Finkbeiner of King Abdullah University of Science and Technology and a member of the Student Affairs Committee, explained how the student submissions were reviewed: ‘The evaluation of the proposals was undertaken with focus on the following two main categories; readability and technical ideas and creativity.’ Very important also was an explicit bid section where the student team present how they plan to invest the budget available. The two categories highlight not only important aspects for a successful bidding and exploration evaluation process specifically, but also layout prerequisites that are critical for university graduates when seeking a career as geoscientists or engineers in the petroleum industry in general. Good technical writing skills are paramount not only for writing proposals and other documents but also for communicating concepts and analytical processes to peers. Further, a good technical background is important to understand problems and develop concepts, approaches and new ideas. Finally, the ability to work successfully in a team of people from different disciplines heavily relies on individual skills which should be part of any geoscience and engineering program offered in universities. After the evaluation process, the judges found that the teams appear to be particularly challenged by the bidding task and concise up front summaries as well as conclusions at the end of the proposal. These are important skills for an industry career– in particular the first one – and highlight where further coordination between academia and industry might be beneficial.

Winners during Vienna 2016.

Dr Roger Clark, University of Leeds and member of the Student Affairs Committee member, is one of the judges. He emphasizes how important the FIELD Challenge exercise is for students: ‘The teams were asked to imagine themselves as an independent operator company. The data they were given simulated a farm-out package, or one that might be collated from contractor “spec” and public data, covering 30,000km2 within a mature NE Europe hydrocarbon province owned by a fictitious nation-state. This was all set in a “landscape” of 50 potential licence blocks, each of 600 km2. Given a $100m budget and representative costs for 2D and 3D seismic, and for wells, the teams were required to submit a bid, with seismic and/or well commitments, for specific block(s). This type of exercise, aligned to professional activities we hope they’ll soon be undertaking in their industry careers, is very valuable for our students.’ Second round qualifiers named The teams being considered for the second round in the FIELD Challenge 2017 are: Institut Teknologi Bandung, Indonesia (Ken Prabowo, Handita Sutoyo, Billy Yolandy, Falza Wihdany, Joshua Nicholas and Advisor Benyamin Sapiie; University of Perugia, Italy (Andrea Fucelli, Ludovico Ottaviani, Paolo Comba, Giovanni Ulfo, Luca Samperi, and advisor Giorgio Minelli); Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS, Malaysia (Lee Ming Xiang, Dylan Then Wei Jiat, Kew Jing Sheng, Firman Syah Kizal, Ahmad Haziq Bin Azmi and advisor Yazid Mansor); Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece (Konstantinos Baliakas, Georgios Karras, Marios Amvrazis, Georgios Dontis, Anastasios Nikitas and advisor Prof Andreas Georgakopoulos); IFP School, France (Mathilde Baron, Pierre Hacquard, Eseoshene Neusiri, Angelica Tuiran and advisor Karine Labat);


TU Freiberg, Germany (Ammar Ghanim, Bruno Scholz, Felix Loch, Franz Kleine, Maximillian Kaeferstein and Prof Stefan Buske); Indian Institute of Technology, Indian School of Mines, India (Aayush Agarwal, Surendra Barala, Fawz Naim, Mani Bansal, Varun Asthana and advisor Prof Rima Chatterjee); University of Manchester, UK (David Cox, Christopher Lloyd, Christopher Thomas, Pavit Jogia, Hannah Lochhead and advisor Prof Mads Huuse); Tomsk Polytechnic University, Russia (Egorov Dmitry, Volkova Aleksandra, Mikhin Aleksey and advisor Vitaly P. Merkulov); Gadjah Mada University, Indonesia (Garda Erlangga, Yohannes Ardhito Triyogo Varianto, Azeza Ega Maestra, Andre Nouval and advisor Dr Sugeng Sapto Surjono). Total dataset that will determine the finalists In the next stage of the competition, the 10 teams have been provided with a more detailed dataset provided by Total. The teams are expected to thoroughly interpret this dataset in the format of a FIELD Development plan. The description of the team’s development should give an account of economic, resource related, technical, environmental and safety related aspects of the development. At the end of March the eight finalists will be selected based on an interim review. The teams are required to record a pitch for their development plans on YouTube. The judges will then select the best six as finalists who will receive travel grants to come to Paris 2017 to present their FIELD development plans in front of the expert judges. The presentations will be held on Sunday 11 June. During the official Opening Ceremony on Monday 12 June, the FIELD Challenge 2017 winners will be announced by the EAGE President. We wish all participants good luck and may the best team win!



Combining forces adds depth to student chapters in Brazil


hen the EAGE Student Chapter at Fluminense Federal University (UFF) in Brazil was created last year, the student members decided to link up with the existing SEG Student Chapter. It wasn’t long before the AAPG students joined in to add to the newly created Geoscientific Student Society (GSS). The creation of the EAGE Chapter was inspired by a very motivating speech by Mohammed Alfaraj, then president of EAGE, during the International Congress of SBGF where he presented a number of interesting opportunities for students. GSS is currently chaired by Master’s student Victor Martins with undergraduate student Bruna Carbonesi serving as vice-president. As the person responsible for new pro master student Felipe Timóteo has as one of his goals to analyze ways to develop projects that bring new experiences, seeking to make the most of what an EAGE Student Chapter can offer. One of the projects scheduled for 2017 is a survey on soil pollution, targeting perhaps a direct impact on our state’s legislation. The other management areas are Relationship/Marketing, Treasury and Secretarial, which are coordinated by undergraduate students Reinaldo Mozart, Clara Porto and Julia Schreiber, respectively. However, all the decisions with great impact are made as a group, under the supervision of professors Dr. Marco Cetale and Dr.

Students from the EAGE and other Chapters with quiz master Gustavo Cartens.

Cleverson Guizan Silva, advisors of the society. This decision process contributes to one of the purposes of the chapter: the students’ approach to each other and also to the teachers. Another point of interest for GSS members is the possibility to participate in events organized by EAGE, such as the Geo-Quiz and the Annual Meetings. In Vienna last year, the Student Chapter participated in student-led activities and the meeting of Student Chapter representatives from around the world. According to Bruna Carbonesi, ‘being able to know different realities and have direct contact with chapters already well established was fundamental to generate new ideas and motivation to develop activities in our University.’ The next event will be the fifth Academic Week of Geophysics that will take place between

March 27 and 31 in Niterói, RJ, with the participation of important names of the area such as the geologist and former director of Petrobras, Guilherme Estrella, who will give a presentation on the Brazilian Pre-salt. Topics such as fundamentals of geophysical methods, seismic processing, magneto-telluric and gravimetric methods, as well as 4D seismic will be presented by experienced professionals over three days. In the following two days, there will be short courses such as Geosoft’s Oasis Montaj tool and workshops such as seismic interpretation and use of GPR. It’s hoped to reach a very varied public, generating interest in students recently admitted to the university and contributing to the deepening of the knowledge of the most advanced students.

Latest Chinese chapter sets out its goals


tudents at Southwest Petroleum University in Chengdu City, Sichuan Province, have a good idea of what they want to achieve with the EAGE Student Chapter they founded in October 2016. Including faculty adviser Wenge Liu, chapter president Cailing Chen, secretary Fan Wang and treasurer Sihai Wu, there are 17 members so far in this first EAGE Student Chapter in Southwest China. All the members are professionally involved in geophysics. Students say that they look forward to support from EAGE as a global professional, not-


for-profit association closely related to geoscientists and engineers. They are looking for opportunities to have a better knowledge of

Southwest Petroleum University EAGE Student Chapter.

their research fields and to keep in touch with the outside world. They also want the chance to collaborate with other student the chapter around the world. Given the small number of members the first task will be to attract more members from all the geosciences. In 2017, chapter hopes to organize two activities per semester. It will also work with the Southwest Petroleum University AAPG Student Chapter, the Southwest Petroleum University SEG Student Chapter and the China University of Petroleum (Beijing) EAGE Student Chapter.



Opening chapter for German students Geoscience students at Freiberg University of Mining and Technology (Technische Universität Bergakademie Freiberg) relate how their EAGE Student Chapter got started last year


ur chapter was founded in April 2016 by a group of students interested in the oil and gas industry supervised by Prof. Stefan Buske. As students of the oldest university of mining in the world, we felt the need to establish a platform for the students of geology and geophysics to exchange and gain extracurricular knowledge and experience, organize field trips and get connected to the industry. After learning about EAGE during the student event, Geophysical Activity Programme 2015, which took place in Freiberg, we decided to contact EAGE about setting up a student chapter. This turned out to be a decision we wouldn’t regret. Initially we started out with a small number of members, however, thanks to EAGE’s webinars the news about a newly formed chapter started to spread and by July we already had 19 members! In October, we organized our first field trip to OMV in Austria, sponsored by EAGE Student Fund and TU Bergakademie Freiberg Association of Friends (VFF). There, we visited the oil field in Gänserndorf and the head office in Vienna. It was a great opportunity to see how an integrated oil and gas company functions and for many participants it was the first visit to an oil field. We started this year with plenty of activities al-

Members gathered at the oil field in Gänserndorf.

ready! In January, we were able to host a twoday seismic stratigraphy course presented by Klaus Fischer of Wintershall, where we polished our seismic interpretation skills. This was followed by a one-day Petrel introductory course by our chapter president, Ammar Ghanim. In February, we organized a three-day Petrel modelling course in cooperation with the AAPG Student Chapter, conducted by Prof. Peter Suess of Wintershall. During this course, we learned how to create static reservoir models in Petrel. Immediately after the course we set out on a field trip to visit the company Herrenknecht, the Black

Forest Observatory and Wintershall’s 3D seismic survey in Landau, Germany. We would like to thank Wintershall for their support and the opportunities we have been given this year so far. Not even a year after establishing the chapter we have already had many opportunities to acquire knowledge and meet the industry professionals. Our future plans are to organize more field trips to visit and get to know other companies and gain more and more experience. We are also looking forward to cooperating with other student chapters in Europe to organize activities together. All in all, we are glad to be a part of the EAGE family.

Major geoscience event for Russian and CIS students and young professionals coming up in Perm


ore than 400 students, postgrads and young professionals from Russia and CIS countries are expected to gather in Perm, Russia on 18-21 April 2017. The occasion is the 10th annual International Research and Practice Conference for Students, Postgraduates and Young Scientists supported by the Euro-Asian Geophysical Society, EAGE and SEG. The theme of the conference this year is ‘Geology in The Developing World 2017’. The goals of the conference being held at the Geological Faculty of Perm State University, Perm are to develop the creative activity of participants, to involve them in the solution of actual problems of modern science, and to make contacts among future colleagues.

The conference programme is divided in thematic sections on Mineral deposits; Mineralogy, geochemistry and petrography; Paleontology, stratigraphy and regional geology; Geophysics, Oil and gas geology; Problems of engineering geology and subsurface protection; Issues of resources, dynamics and groundwater protection; Environmental geology and environmental protection; GIS in geosciences; and Geology in English. The chairman of the Organizing Committee is Kataev Valeriy Nikolaevich, dean of the Geological Faculty of Perm State University. A book of abstracts entitled Geology in the developing world will be published in two volumes. All abstracts will be indexed in the database of the Russian Science Citation Index. Some 467 applica-


tions from more than 30 universities and colleges in Russian Federation and CIS countries were submitted this year, twice the amount last year. This is probably attributable to a survey about the effectiveness of the conference and measures taken from the feedback. Working languages at the conference are Russian and English.

Student Chapter members during the 9th International Research Conference.



Get ready for the Big Data workshop and Hackathon in Paris


uestions about the potential of statistical or machine learning methods for practical geosciences applications will be discussed during a workshop themed ‘Data Science for Geosciences’ at the EAGE Annual Meeting in Paris on Monday 12 June 2017). It will be preceded by a two day Hackathon! Wikipedia describes Big Data as ‘a term for data sets that are so large or complex that traditional data processing application softwares are inadequate to deal with them’. When you google on Big Data you will find analysts, (online) marketeers, and strategists talking about the importance for companies to join the ‘hype’. But is it really hype? Our geoscience industry has been familiar with the term for many years. Geoscientists have to handle a huge variety of data on a wide range of scales. These data can be derived from measurements in the lab, in wells, at the surface, from satellite or they can result from different geoscience modelling or simulation approaches. Challenges arise in the integration of the multiphysical features of these data, which is required to provide a consistent understanding of the medium under study. Standard approaches relying on the determination of a model aiming to synthetize all these multi-physical, multi-scale phenomena are quite complex, time-consuming and often hampered by difficulties encountered when

coupling the different (thermo-, hydro-, geomecha-, geochemical…) mechanisms as well as their limited capacity to cover scales ranging from core to basin scale. Linked to this machine learning theme is the concept of a hackathon. An event is being held right before the EAGE conference, on 10-11 June, in Paris, orgainized by Agile geoscience. ‘Hackathons are not just for programmers,’ says Matt Hall of Agile Scientific, who has a PhD in sedimentology and has worked as an interpretation specialist, explorationist and geophysical advisor. ‘Scientists, designers, artists, and marketeers can all make important contributions to the process.’ Hackathons, sometimes called code-a-thons or hack days, are all about creativity. The goal is to make things: apps, websites, games, or even documents, movies, or illustrations. The theme for the hackathon in Paris is ‘machine learning’ — anything involving artificial intelligence, data science, big data, or statistical learning is fair game. You could build a web app for analyzing log data, or design a mobile app that classifies rocks, or write an illustrated tutorial for someone who wants to learn about the field, or do a literature survey of the history of AI in geology. If you are interested in participating please visit You can register on your own or with a group.

Women less favoured for peer reviews in academic journals


subtle form of bias causing under-representation of women and minorities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) has been documented in a recent article in the science publication Nature. Jory Lerback and Brooks Hanson of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) show that its journals invite fewer women to referee articles. The authors say it’s well established that women and minorities are disadvantaged in hiring or promotion decisions, awarding of grants, invitations to conferences, nominations for awards, and forming professional collaborations. Such scholarly activities are crucial for career advancement and job retention. Another career-building activity is serving as a peer reviewer for publications. According to Lerbeck and Hanson, this develops writing skills and expertise through exposure to other manuscripts, and fosters relationships with fellow scholars and scientific leaders. These activities are especially important for young scientists. Apparently most publishers do not collect gender, age or any other relevant demographic information from authors or reviewers. So biases have been harder to pin down. Most


studies of gender inequality in publishing have assigned gender to authors but have lacked information on age. This is important because many fields have only recently seen increases in participation of women. Lerbeck and Hanson present evidence that women of all ages have fewer opportunities to take part in peer review. With 20 journals and nearly 6000 papers published per year, the AGU is the largest society publisher of Earth and space science. Using this large data set that includes the genders and ages of authors and reviewers from 2012 to 2015 for AGU journals they show that women were used less as reviewers than expected (on the basis of their proportion of membership of the society and as published authors in AGU journals). The bias is a result of authors and editors, especially male ones, suggesting women as reviewers less often, and a slightly higher decline rate among women in each age group when asked. The authors state that their findings underline the need for efforts to increase female scientists’ engagement in manuscript reviewing to help in the advancement and retention of women in science.

Promoting geosciences to native Hawaiians


ducational institutes in the US state of Hawai are collaborating to attract and retain native Hawaiian High School students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) fields. The aim of the $2.6 million Partnerships for Geoscience Education project Halau Ola Honua, Our Living World is to facilitate the tranisition of students to baccalaureate programmes in Earth and Ocean Sciences (geosciences). Windward Community College (WCC), the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa, Honolulu Community College and Kauai Community College are working together. Dr Ardis Eschenberg, vice chancellor for academic affairs and lead principal investigator for  Halau Ola Honua, said: ‘Native Hawaiians made Hawaii a thriving nation because their environment was their laboratory—Halau Ola Honua  (our living world, living laboratory). This project goes back to this living world laboratory to build a pathway to attract and retain native Hawaiian students because native Hawaiian geoscientists are key to Hawaii’s future.’.



The dinosaur that got stuck in the mud


esearchers in Scotland and China are puzzling over a dinosaur that literally got stuck in the mud. The dinosaur skeleton was found during excavations using explosives at a school construction site near Ganzhou, China. The bird-like species was found lying on its front with its wings and neck outstretched. Scientists at the University of Edinburgh School of GeoSciences and the Institute of Geology, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences, believe the creature became stuck in the mud about 66-72 million years ago as the species was evolving into a bird. It has been named Tongtianlong limosus, meaning ‘muddy dragon on the road to heaven’. Dr Steve Brusatte, Chancellor’s Fellow in Vertebrate Palaentology at the University of Edinburgh, said: ‘This new dinosaur is one of the most beautiful, but saddest, fossils I have ever seen. But we are lucky that the Mud Dragon got stuck in the muck, because its skeleton is one of the best examples of a dinosaur that was flourishing during those final few million years before the

Scary Dinosaur fossil.

asteroid came down and changed the world in an instant.’ The two-legged animal belongs to a family of feathered dinosaurs called oviraptoriuds, characterised by having short, toothless heads and sharp beaks. The group was probably one of the last groups of dinosaurs to diversify before the asteroid impact 66 million years ago, which killed off all of the non-bird dinosaurs. Dr Junchang Lü, of the  Institute of Geology, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences, said: ‘The discovery of the new oviraptorid dinosaur further indicates that the Ganzhou area of

Southern China is a most productive locality of oviraptorid dinosaurs and has a huge diversity of from the late Cretaceous. It will provide important information on the study of evolution, distribution and behaviour of oviraptorid dinosaurs.’ The study, published in Scientific Reports, was carried out in collaboration with the Institute of Geology, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences and the Dongyang Museum, China, and is the latest in a collaboration between Edinburgh  and the Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences.

Unravelling the mysteries of Mars’ mantle

Volcanic Mars.


ars’ mantle may be more complicated than previously thought. In a study published in the Natureaffiliated journal Scientific Reports, researchers at Louisiana State Univeristy document geochemical changes over time in the lava flows of Elysium, a major martian volcanic province. LSU geology and geophysics graduate researcher David Susko led the study with colleagues at LSU including his advisor Suniti Karunatillake, the University of Rahuna in Sri

Lanka, the SETI Institute, Georgia Institute of Technology, NASA Ames, and the Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie in France. The researchers found that the unusual chemistry of lava flows around Elysium is consistent with primary magmatic processes, such as a heterogeneous mantle beneath Mars’ surface or the weight of the overlying volcanic mountain causing different layers of the mantle to melt at different temperatures as they rise to the surface over time. Elysium is a giant volcanic complex on Mars, the second largest behind Olympic Mons. For scale, it rises to twice the height of Earth’s Mount Everest, or approximately 16 km. Geologically, however, Elysium is more like Earth’s Tibesti Mountains in Chad, the Emi Koussi in particular, than Everest. This comparison is based on images of the region from the Mars Orbiter Camera aboard the Mars Global Surveyor.


Susko said: Most of the volcanic features we look at on Mars are in the range of 3-4 billion years old. There are some patches of lava flows on Elysium that we estimate to be 3-4 million years old, so three orders of magnitude younger. In geologic timescales, three million years ago is like yesterday.’ In fact, Elysium’s volcanoes hypothetically could still erupt, although further research is needed to confirm this. Susko’s work in particular reveals that the composition of volcanoes on Mars may evolve over their eruptive history. Susko and colleagues at LSU analyzed geochemical and surface morphology data from Elysium using instruments on board NASA’s Mars Odyssey Orbiter (2001) and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (2006). They had to account for the dust that blankets Mars’ surface in the aftermath of strong dust storms, to make sure that the shallow subsurface chemistry actually reflected Elysium’s igneous material and not the overlying dust.



CGG software donation designed to inspire students

Chinese universities catching up in natural science and math world rankings


or the third year in a row, UC Berkeley in California has taken the top spot in natural sciences and mathematics category in the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU-FIELD) 2016 published by the independent consultancy ShanghaiRanking. In total, 27 countries are represented in the science and maths ranking. Although none feature in the top 20, China’s universities are second only to the US for the highest number of universities in the ranking overall. The ranking results, as reported in the Times Higher Education (THE), reveal the 200 best universities for physical sciences and maths in 2016. All of the top six universities (Berkeley, Stanford, Princeton, Harvard, MIT, Caltech) are in the US, with one UK university (Cambridge), one Japanese university (Tokyo), one Swiss university (EHT-Zurich) and another American university (UCLA) completing the top 10. The top university in Asia is the University of Tokyo in eighth place, followed by another Japanese university – the University of Kyoto – just outside the top 20. For students looking to study physics, chemistry, maths or related subjects, opportunities to attend a top university are spread all over the world. There is a fairly even spread of top-200 universities across Europe, Americas and Asia/Pacific regions. Five broad subject rankings were released in September 2016 as part of the ARWU. The ranking methodology uses a number of indicators to rank 200 universities for each of the five disciplines. These indicators include alumni prize-winners and research publications in top journals.


GG GeoSoftware has donated its HampsonRussell reservoir characterization software suite to the Department of Earth Sciences at Sultan Qaboos University in Oman. Students will be able to use this software suite to better explore quantitative reservoir characterization and seismic inversion techniques. The software support marks a new milestone in the long-term cooperation between CGG and the Department of Earth Sciences at Sultan Qaboos University. Previously, CGG has helped the Department to equip their seismic processing lab with computers and also granted licences for its Geovation seismic data processing software. Dr Salah Al-Khirbash, head of the department of Earth Sciences, Sultan Qaboos University, said: ‘The HampsonRussell suite is one of the best available tools for reservoir characterization. We gratefully acknowledge this support from CGG GeoSoftware for training our students and conducting research at the Sultan Qaboos University. It gives our staff at the department a competitive edge in the field of geoscience research and education, and our students will benefit by learning and developing skills in quantitative reservoir characterization’. Kamal al-Yahya, senior vice president, GeoSoftware, CGG, said: ‘The aim of our active University Software Donation Programme is to inspire the next generation of geoscientists by providing them with the tools they need to understand and contribute to an ever changing technological environment.’ CGG GeoSoftware has been donating its HampsonRussell software for research and training purposes since 1987.

A stretch to relieve stress On International Woman's Day (8 March) in keeping with the theme of ‘Health and Wellbeing in the Workplace’, there was a special invitation to staff and students at the Department of Earth Science and Engineering (ESE), Imperial College London. They were invited to attend a ‘Deskercise’ session. It was based on the assumption that in the digital age, chances are that most people are deskbound at their workstations and get too little movement during the working day. Fitting time to go to the gym in between work and home life can be difficult with a 9-to-5 routine, but

apparently exercise doesn’t always require a gym membership and changing into shorts and trainers. To combat the adverse effects desk jobs have on weight, back, wrists, eyes, neck, and muscles, staff and students were being encouraged to attend a quick desk stretch session that can help relieve the pressure on desk bound work. The exercises are said to be low impact/intensity and individuals of all fitness levels can participate. There has been no news yet on how many people showed up for this event …

EAGE Students Event Calendar April 2017

June 2017

20-23 April Geosphere 2017

11 June

EAGE FIELD Challenge (finals)

Paris, France

Ch¸eciny, Poland

May 2017

12 June  79th EAGE Conference & Exhibition 2017 Student Programme

25-28 May Geophysical Activity Programme 2017

Paris, France

Karlsruhe, Germany

14 June

EAGE Geo-Quiz

27 May

Student Lecture Tour Europe

Paris, France

Karlsruhe, Germany



EAGE Newsletter Students 2017, Issue 1 2017  

The EAGE Newsletter Students focuses on EAGE activities, industry news and other issues of interest to students of the geosciences.

EAGE Newsletter Students 2017, Issue 1 2017  

The EAGE Newsletter Students focuses on EAGE activities, industry news and other issues of interest to students of the geosciences.