Porosity distribution in a 500,000 grid-cell model simulated with Landmark's Parallel-VIP [20,383 bytes]. The VisionDome is a portable immersive virtual reality system available through Schlumberger GeoQuest [13,948 bytes]. Commercial virtual reality (VR) systems were strongly evident at the recent SEG convention. They are now available and come in five main styles: VR theater - curved screen for large group presentations Single-wall theater - for small group presentations Four-wall VR

Victor Schmidt

Virtual reality comes in five sizes

Commercial virtual reality (VR) systems were strongly evident at the recent SEG convention. They are now available and come in five main styles:

  • VR theater - curved screen for large group presentations
  • Single-wall theater - for small group presentations
  • Four-wall VR "cave" - for work groups and training
  • VR desk - for individual professional use
  • Portable VR hemisphere - for remote project use.
The new VR paradigm enhances teamwork by allowing technical specialists to merge separate skills in a common project model. Software to run the systems is capable and easy to use. Much of it was developed in other industries (auto manufacturing and medical, to name two) and has been adapted for use in the petroleum industry.

Outer Moray Firth survey

Schlumberger Geco-Prakla completed Phase 2 of the new TQ3D nonexclusive seismic survey of the Outer Moray Firth. The survey consistes of 882 sq km of data covering UK Blocks 12/25a, 13/21, 13/26 and 13/27. The vessel Seisquest acquired the survey. Phase 1 of the survey consisted of 192 sq km in Block 13/23 and was completed last year.

Panoramic 3D vision

GeoQuest and Alternate Realities Corp (ARC) will market the VisionDometrademark, a multi- user, 3D virtual reality display unit, through Geoquest. The VisionDome is the world's first fully immersive, portable, single-projection, virtual reality environment that does not require goggles, headsets, helmets or any other restrictive equipment.

The VisionDome is a catalyst for encouraging asset team collaboration in an immersive workspace, claims Larry Denver, Vice President of Marketing for GeoQuest. It features an industry-unique lens that projects a 180° panoramic view of images.

Falkland hydrocarbon search

The presence of oil and gas shows in two of the three wells drilled to date is encouraging Sodra Petroleum AB (operator) and Desire Petroleum Plc as they continue the search for the 'sweet-spot' in the North Falkland Basin's hydrocarbon system. Sodra spudded the 14/24-A well last month.

Three earlier wells - 14/09-1 (Amerada Hess), 14/13-1 (Lasmo), and 14/05-1 (Shell) - showed that an active petroleum system exists and is comprised of at least three separate hydrocarbon sources. The well is the first exploratory test in Tranche F and the fourth Falkland exploration well. The Braela prospect will be drilled to a proposed total depth of 3,750 meters (12,304 ft).

Basalt LIPS

Large igneous provinces (LIPS) occur around the world and tend to interfere with seismic signals making subsurface imaging difficult. Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Leg 183 is scheduled to sample the Kerguelen Plateau in the southern Indian Ocean beginning next month.

ODP Leg 183 will explore the plateau to address four issues:

  • Chronology of the Kerguelen Plateau
  • Mineralogy, melting processes and magmatic evolution
  • Environmental consequences of LIP formation
  • The relationship between LIP development and tectonism.
Three marine geophysical surveys were completed on the plateau over the summers of 1997 and 1998 in preparation for ODP Leg 183.

Integrated software suites

Paradigm Geophysical announced the release of ECHOS and ERGOS, two fully integrated software suites that integrate and streamline the company's products. The software uses a shared prospect-based data model, parallel application usage, and a prospect-oriented workflow.

ECHOS includes: Focus - for seismic processing, Power - for velocity modeling and depth imaging, and Probe - for stratagraphic inversion and imaging. ERGOS includes: VoxelGeo - for volume-based visualization and interpretation, SolidGeo - for solid model building and mapping, Explorer - for velocity building and time-to-depth conversion, and GeoSec - for structural analysis and model validataion.

More voxels

Reservoir models are gaining additional detail by the use of parallel processing. Landmark Graphics announced Parallel-VIP for multi-processor NT computing platforms that can simulate a 500,000 grid-cell, fully compositional reservoir model.

Favorable parallel efficiencies were demonstrated as the number of processors increased to 20 from 4. "We believe that the integration of reservoir simulation into a complete workflow for engineers will create opportunities to better manage and optimize oil and gas reserves," said Reidar Bratvold, Landmark Vice President. The new software will be shipped in the first quarter, 1999.

Plug and play

PrismTech Corp has launched OpenSpirit E&P Component Framework, an application independent software platform enabling the "plug and play" integration of exploration and production (E&P) software applications and data stores. OpenSpirit, a Java-based product, provides generic E&P data and visualization components, which facilitate the development of inter-operable applications.

The software provides standardized data access to Landmark, Schlumberger, and POSC. The framework supports distributed applications, utilizes OMG/CORBA standards, and supports new application development using C++, Java, and Microsoft development tools.

OpenSpirit is a collaborative effort of PrismTech and the OpenSpirit Alliance composed of Shell, Elf, Statoil, Chevron, BG, CGG Petrosystems, Shared Earth Technologies, Jason Geosystems, de Groot-Bril Earth Sciences, Foster Findlay Associates and IFP. Use of the software can lower the cost of application and data store integration, and lower application development and purchase costs. OpenSpirit V1.0 is available this month.

New vessel scheduled

Aker Geo has awarded a letter of intent to Aker Finnyards for construction of the company's first seismic vessel. A hull section from Romania will be utilized for the new ship.

The ship is due for delivery in the second quarter of 1999 and will be ready for service during the summer. Total price for the newbuild is around NOK 450 million.

Copyright 1998 Oil & Gas Journal. All Rights Reserved.

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