Aussie database for Marathon (June 1999)

Marathon has signed a major licensing agreement with Petrosys for the company-wide deployment of dbMap.

In the mid '80's ,the world was going crazy over the workstation, and to a large extent, overlooking the humble basemap. Adelaide-based Petrosys however was busy developing world-class mapping software, an activity which has grown to encompass a PPDM-based database dbMap. The company now has over 330 users of their software at 105 client sites throughout the world. Marathon Oil is the latest addition to the client base, having already tested dbMap at six locations. The new agreement offers company-wide deployment on a per-use basis, with licensing controlled through the Flex License Manager.


Petrosys has built up its client base by integrating the major vendors application suites and now boasts interfaces to Landmark's SeisWorks and OpenWorks, IHS Energy's PROBE and GeoQuest's IES/X and GeoFrame.

User friendly

Another selling feature claimed by Petrosys' US manager Tom Robinson is the 'one-day' learning curve. Robinson said "Ease of use was a major factor in Marathon's choice of dbMap. DbMap's capabilities and competitive pricing mean that it is displacing less integrated packages within other major oil companies."


DbMap is implemented on Oracle and is an extension of the PPDM 3.4 data model. It is typically implemented on a Unix database server. The dbMap application accesses the database as a client that can be run on a Unix workstation, X-terminal, or PC with X-terminal emulation software.


Data types handled by dbMap include well, lease, seismic, culture and asset information. This allows tracking of physical assets like tapes, reports, and samples, and their linking to dbMap wells, seismic, leases and culture. Asset module also can be linked with other in-house, non-Petrosys products, with particular interest in the ability to select spatial objects and to view graphical images from other applications. This functionality is present in the Asset module. The comprehensive well data module is based on the PPDM data model, and includes tables for tops, cores, tests, production, logs run, deviation surveys and well location. The seismic module uses an extension of the PPDM model to record the acquisition and processing history of seismic lines along with the location data.

virtual private network

How does a relatively small (Petrosys has a staff of 18 at the head office) company support a major oil company's world-wide operations? Apart from the support staff in Houston, a new virtual private network is about to be put into service, which will allow members of the support team to follow up a support call without duplication of effort or loss of information by using a workflow based system on the Petrosys intranet. Current research in ongoing in the areas of geological modeling and 3D Visualization and also in the use of Corba links to external applications.

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