2018 Symposium Speakers

This year the CSEG Symposium will feature the following invited speakers, who have been chosen by the Symposium Committee from a collection of talk proposals submitted by open invitation. Most talks contain new material of a value oriented, case study nature. It is with great enthusiasm that we present the list of speakers. Please note that the presentation speaker order will be subject to change.

Daniel Trad

Mismatches Between Physics and Operators for Least Squares Kirchhoff and Reverse Time Migrations

Daniel Trad, PhD
University of Calgary

Abstract | Biography

Biography
Daniel Trad obtained his Ph.D. in Geophysics from the University of British Columbia (2001). He worked in Argentina and Brazil in electromagnetic methods (1993-1997), and then moved to Canada where he worked for Veritas (later CGGVeritas and now CGG) from 2003 to the 2015. From 2010 to 2012 he worked for the CGGVeritas dedicated processing center for Total (Pau, France). From 2015 until joining the academia he worked as a private software contractor and then as a programmer for Techco Geophysical Services. Currently he is Associate Professor and Chair in Exploration Geophysics at the University of Calgary, as well as Associate Director of CREWES. He teaches courses on multidimensional seismic processing and geophysical software development. His main areas of research have been signal processing, interpolation, multicomponent seismic processing and least squares migration. He received the 2011 CSEG technical achievement award for his work in Five Dimensional Interpolation.

Guy Hilburn

Characterizing Reservoir Fracture Systems with Orthorhombic Tomography

Guy Hilburn, PhD
TGS

Abstract | Biography

Abstract
Areal and localized fracture characterization is vital to motivate production and completion decisions for onshore wells. There are a variety of methods to generate this information, ranging from time processing moveout correction to geomechanical modeling in appropriate geological regimes. These represent a wide range of applicability and expense, and uncertainties in the processes may exacerbate concerns with the results. Ideally, fracture information will be confirmed by both kinematic and imaging results, allowing for strong constraints on the orientation and density of important fracture systems.

Depth imaging results can be leveraged to provide a tie between azimuthal anisotropy suggested by moveout analysis, and large scale fault directionality observed in seismic imaging. The orthorhombic model space allows for extra generality in fitting gather kinematics, which provides useful directionality, while also offering an uplift in imaging quality by improving the focusing of events. The final suite of results from a properly managed orthorhombic model building project includes interpretable models which can be simply decomposed to provide fracture orientation and density estimates, as well as the most accurate possible imaging to correlate results to observed structure.

This described workflow was applied to a central Texas dataset through the well-studied Austin Chalk play. The orthorhombic models obtained suggest a general fracture orientation which matches previously published literature for the trend through this region. The imaging uplift provided through model refinement produced more clearly-defined fault maps, following a scan of the coherence in the seismic image. Smaller scale details in the directionality and intensity of the azimuthal anisotropy show a good correlation to both the observed faults, as well as production data regarding the gas-to-oil ratio of producing wells in the region. The imaging and production correlation were both found to be improved beyond those obtained through time processing.

Advanced depth processing in an orthorhombic model space is a natural next step in the industry’s consideration of onshore reservoirs where fractures are of paramount importance to production and completion. Allowing for straightforward characterization of fracture systems, the presented case study demonstrates that orthorhombic depth processing creates added value with an interpretable model suite while simultaneously providing an uplift to seismic images, resulting in significant improvement in reservoir characterization at an early stage in the overall production process.

Biography
Guy attained a B.S. in Physics from Texas State University in 2005, before finishing his education with a Ph.D. in Astrophysics from Rice University in 2012, with research interests focused on radiative high energy phenomena and black hole dynamics. Following graduation, Guy joined the Research and Development department of TGS and has recently passed his fifth anniversary with the company. During this time, he has authored a variety of publications for SEG, EAGE, The Leading Edge, First Break, and more. His primary research focuses are on depth model building and novel tomographic solutions, including Image-Guided Tomography, non-parametrized moveout picking, and various anisotropic media.

Nilanjan Ganguly

Application of AVO in Lower Magdalena Valley Basin

Nilanjan Ganguly*, Luz Rodriguez, Andrew Willis, Stephen Hiebert, Sean Johnston, Ken Umbach, Mark Teare, and Aurora Juan
Canacol Energy

Abstract | Biography

Biography
Nilanjan Ganguly received his B.Sc. degree in Geological Sciences from Indian Institute of Technology (India) and M. Sc. in Geophysics from University of Victoria. Over the past 19 years, he has worked as an explorationist on various international and frontier basins. His work has spanned projects over Gulf of Mexico, West Africa, Middle East, East Africa and South America. His professional interests include AVO, seismic attributes and inversion. In his spare time, Nilanjan is an avid runner and also plays squash and golf.

Scott Matieshin

Diffraction Imaging Analysis: Adding Detail and Utility to a Conventional Interpretation

Scott Matieshin
Consultant

Abstract | Biography

Biography
Scott Matieshin, M.Sc, Professional Geophysicist (P.Geo) and industry consultant, has been active in Calgary's Oil and Gas sector for over 21 years, working on assets throughout Canada and abroad. Previous to that, Scott spent several years as a geologist in pursuit of features and orebodies through northern Canada ranging from base metal exploration through platinum group metals to diamondiferous kimberlites. Enhanced visualization techniques and applications for subtle features, structures, and new play evaluations are some of Scott's current technical interests.

Laurie Ross

Data Reconstruction and Beyond: Case Studies in Petroleum and Mining Industries

Laurie Ross* and Ye Zheng
Geo-X Exploration Inc.

Abstract | Biography

Abstract
Pioneered by Dr. Mauricio Sacchi and his students, data reconstruction has recently become an important practice in seismic data processing. Due to financial and environmental restrictions, land seismic data are almost always under sampled and irregularly sampled, which degrades the quality of data processing results. Data reconstruction helps regularize spatial sampling, prevent processing artifacts, and produce higher quality subsurface images. In this talk, two case studies will be presented. One involves a heavy oil production field, and the other, a case study in the mining industry.

CASE I: There are two individually processed 3D volumes in a heavy oil development field with different types of acquisition geometry; one is orthogonal and the other is MegaBin. Because of the inconsistencies dealing with two individually processed 3Ds, the area geophysicist decided to merge these two datasets and process them with the latest technology for more confidence in the interpretation of the stacked pay zones before planning a drilling program. These two 3Ds have different natural bin sizes and the stacking fold varies significantly. 5D data reconstruction was used to regularize the spatial sampling in order to minimize potential artifacts of processing algorithms (such as prestack migration) and to provide optimal imaging. The new processing result is superior to the original processing in terms of structural accuracy and resolution, so much so that the geophysicist was able to pick three extra well locations in the area that were not viable before.

CASE II: A mining company was planning to shoot a 3D in their potential mining area. For the consideration of cost-effectiveness, an existing 3D in an area with similar geological character was used for decimation testing and 5D data reconstruction. Based on the testing, new acquisition was designed to be executed in a few stages, beginning with a spare 3D and followed by infill surveys in later years when more detailed geological structures were needed. The overall cost of the seismic project was minimized significantly.

Through the use of processing experiments, 5D data reconstruction is a proven tool for minimizing the negative impact of irregular (and under) sampling, and maximizing the utility of the information contained in the seismic data.

Biography
Thirty-two years in the energy sector in Calgary, Alberta have taken Laurie Ross from a junior geophysicist to Group Leader, Manager, and now President and Partner at Geo-X, a geophysical service company formed in 2012.

Laurie started at the original Geo-X in 1985 with a Bachelor of Engineering in Geophysics from the University of Saskatchewan. In her early days as a Junior Processor, Laurie worked mainly on 2D seismic for the energy sector, but she soon developed more sophisticated skills such as 3D processing and time lapse processing for the Saskatchewan potash mines. As Laurie’s technical skills evolved, so too did her managerial responsibilities – she worked up to Group Leader and then Processing Manager, but eventually returned to working as a senior processor, where she could focus on what she loves doing best, which is processing seismic data.

A few years after the original Geo-X was acquired Laurie was part of a group of highly regarded professionals who set out to start a new Geo-X. She learned early on that to succeed you need to surround yourself with exceptional people, whether it is running a business or organizing a successful convention. For Laurie, it is collaborative efforts within an outstanding team that makes work successful, fun, and exciting.

Laurie has devoted a considerable amount of her to time to CSEG related activities. She has chaired numerous conventions and symposiums, served on the CSEG Executive, and sat on the CSEG Foundation Board. This enthusiastic support for the CSEG was formally recognized in 2010 when she was presented the Meritorious Service Award.

Laurie has co-authored a number of papers and in the last few years has featured work with 5D Interpolation and how it can be used to aid in acquisition deficiencies and general processing. Like many geophysicists of her age group, Laurie fell into geophysics at university and feels lucky that she did. She feels Confucius said it best: “Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life.”

Liz Lappin

Petro-Lithium and the Evolution of Energy in Alberta

Liz Lappin
E3 Metals Corp.

Abstract | Biography

Abstract
E3 Metals Corp. is a new company in the emerging Petro-Lithium space. Lithium has many applications, but the largest growth sector for lithium in the next 5 years is expected to be electric vehicle batteries and energy storage devices. E3 Metals has demonstrated Alberta’s significant lithium resources by completing Canada’s largest NI 43-101 compliant mineral resource for Petro-Lithium to date. The Inferred resource indicates 2.83 Million tonnes of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) is present on just 16% of E3’s total land position. While lithium concentrations found in Petro-Lithium projects are generally at the lower end of the current lithium industry production grade curve, at around 80 mg/L, these grades are opportunely held within the prolific Leduc reservoir. This reservoir is estimated to contain tens of billions of liters of lithium-bearing brines and has demonstrated substantial flow rates over the last 6 decades. High brine flow rates combined with new direct lithium extraction technologies currently under development have the potential to make Petro-Lithium a game changer for the lithium industry. E3 has brought together an experienced team that has secured the lithium, and other mineral, rights to over 570,000 hectares (~1.4 million acres) in Alberta covering this world class reservoir.

Importantly, this project’s execution will be highly leveraged off existing Albertan talent and infrastructure. This includes technical professionals such as geologists and geophysicists, many of whom already have a deep understanding of Devonian carbonates. Further geophysical characterization of the Leduc will support E3 Metals in the progression of an Inferred Resource towards Measured and Indicated. As oil and gas pools mature in the Leduc, many of E3’s key areas are facing massive liability issues related to infrastructure retirement. Petro-Lithium operations can address this issue by selectively revitalizing oil field infrastructure to produce lithium instead of oil. Doing so not only lessens the burden of liability on the province, but also has the potential to extend oil and gas production life through strategic injection and pressure support, and can provide employment to an underutilized workforce. In addition, the reduction in exploration costs and development risks as a result of oilfield repurposing are substantial compared to conventional lithium exploration. Moving towards commercialization, E3 also plans to reduce costs and improve sustainability by leveraging geothermal heat contained within brines during lithium processing. E3’s focus for 2018 is to develop a pilot to commercialize a series of direct lithium extraction technologies currently under development by industry leaders. We believe lithium can revitalize Alberta’s energy landscape, fuel global electrification, and bring wealth and prosperity all Canadians.

Biography
Liz is a Professional Geologist with a solid background in capturing value from Alberta’s hydrocarbon and geothermal resources. Liz brings this experience to the E3 Metals team as she drives the technical group towards the development of lithium brine projects. Liz is focused on maximizing asset value through technical excellence and creative collaboration between disciplines. Working across Western North America, Liz has gained a foundation of technical experience with oil and gas majors such as Cenovus, Encana and Suncor. More recently, Liz was the founder and principal consultant at Castle Rock Consulting Ltd., which specializes in geothermal value creation for the energy industry in Canada. She was appointed a Fellow with the Energy Futures Lab in 2017 and volunteers for the Canadian Geothermal Energy Association working on policy initiatives. Liz was honoured to receive a 2017 Young Women in Energy award for her leadership and commitment to pioneering new and innovative initiatives in Alberta’s energy space.

Bob Parney

Quantum Computing and Quantum Machine Learning for Geophysicists

Bob Parney, Ph.D
D-Wave

Abstract | Biography

Abstract
In 2015, Google published a study using a D-Wave quantum computer that demonstrated 100 million times speed up over conventional computers on a problem specifically designed to demonstrate the power of quantum computing. For context, this speed up is the equivalent of a conventional computer taking a year to solve this problem, and the Quantum computer solving this in 3 seconds.

Quantum computers are computers that use quantum-mechanical effects to solve problems. Each quantum bit or qubit is composed of super-conducting loops that by “super-position” can be both 0 and 1 simultaneously which allows them to explore solution space greater than the number of atoms in the universe, at 10,000 times a second.

In order to maintain their super conducting properties, the chips must be cooled to a temperature of approximately 0.2 degrees Kelvin, significantly colder than interstellar space.

Qubits are arranged as a graph where each qubit state (0 or 1) is multiplied by a weight and couplers between qubits allow qubits to influence each other. The entire system is set to a quantum-mechanical neutral state and the problem is gradually introduced to the chip until it collapses to a solution – a process known as quantum annealing.

Quantum computers are a highly specialized tool that can be applied to specific tasks such as optimization and machine learning. Programming QC requires an entirely new approach.

Volkswagen used the D-Wave system to re-route 40,000 taxis in Beijing to avoid traffic jams. Other applications have included web-advertising, protein sequencing and satellite scheduling.

The first geophysical applications are likely to be in Machine Learning. Deep neural nets are currently predicting “dog” vs “cat” in FaceBook images at 92 to 96% success rates, but stumble when the predictions need to be statistical in nature. Most Oil and Gas data-sets including seismic do not “bin” naturally (i.e. dog vs cat) and predictions need to be made over a range of values (e.g. EUR, porosity etc…). Probabilistic machine learning can deliver these types of predictions, but has been underexplored as it is not easily implemented on classical computers. Quantum computing is particularly suited to the types of calculations necessary for deep neural net, probabilistic ML.

Obvious applications could range from velocity or horizon picking, to classifying features in 3-D seismic, to value-prediction (e.g. EUR, vol etc…) based on a wide range of subsurface data sets. There is much work to be done in these areas.

This talk will provide an introduction to the quantum computer and explore some of the possibilities for Quantum Machine Learning, and how these technologies will disrupt the Oil and Gas industry.

Biography
Bob Parney Ph.D. is a Geophysicist and Hydrogeologist with 30+ years oil industry experience, 8 of those in seismic processing shops. Bob has an M.Sc. and B.Sc. in geophysics from the University of Calgary and a Ph.D. in Hydrogeology from UBC. Bob began his career at Esso in Calgary and then worked as a geoscientist and reservoir engineer based out of Seattle, Denver and Los Angeles working everything from North American unconventionals to Vietnamese granitic basement reservoirs with stops along the way at most play types. Bob is now director of professional services for D-Wave, a Canadian company based out of Burnaby that designs, builds and programs quantum computers – the only company in the world to sell quantum computers commercially with $50 million in sales so far. Bob plays a hands on role including programming the quantum computer in a diverse range of fields including traffic flow optimization, Machine Learning and Quantum Chemistry.

Markham Hislop

The Energy Transition and the Future of Alberta Oil and Gas

Markham Hislop
Energi News

Abstract | Biography

Abstract
The evidence is now clear that the global economy is about 10 years into a 100-year long transition from fossil fuels to clean energy technologies (essentially, an all-electric economy with power generated by wind, solar, hydro, tidal, and other renewables). That's the bad news. The good news is that oil will power transportation well into the 21st century, and natural gas will be with us long after that. Despite the current hype around clean energy and electric vehicles, energy systems change very slowly given their scale and complexity. And the old and new technologies will compete in the marketplace for a long time before the new eventually wins out. Therefore, Albertans should be optimistic about the short to medium-term prospects for the oil and gas industry, but also mindful of the changes that are already underway and the need to adapt to new realities.

Biography
Markham Hislop is an energy journalist and publisher of Energi News (formerly North American Energy News). Markham uses a technology adoption model of his own design to analyze and report upon the all facets of the energy industry, from oil and gas to EVs and renewables. Over the past 5 years, he has probably reported about the Energy Transition more than any other North American journalist. His work has been published in Canadian Business, Alberta Oil Magazine, Hart Energy Publications, World Oil, Vancouver Magazine, and other publications.

Paul Thacker

Recent Advances in Trace Density and Seismic Data Quality in Western Canada

Paul Thacker* and Allan Châtenay
Explor

Abstract | Biography

Biography
Paul Thacker has a BSc in Geophysics from Exeter University, UK. He began his geophysical career as a Junior Observer on a Teledyne vibroseis crew in Israel in 1976, before moving to the Israeli Geophysical Institute as a geophysicist. He joined BP in London in 1982, and worked in seismic operations in UAE, Offshore UK, France, Germany, Netherlands, Yemen, and Indonesia before moving to Colombia as Manager of Seismic Operations from 1992-1997. After leaving BP he worked as a Seismic Acquisition Specialist for Repsol-YPF based in Madrid, Spain until 2001, and then accepted a position as GeoSupport Manager with WesternGeco in Calgary. After WesternGeco closed their North American land operations, he joined RPS Energy in Calgary as a Consultant through to 2010. He joined Talisman in 2010, where he was Seismic Operations Manager before retiring in 2014. Since 2014 he has consulted with Explor in Calgary.

 

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