National Data Repository N°9, New Delhi, India

NDR updates from ONGC, Brazil’s ANP, Pemex, SAIC, UK DECC and Stephenson & Associates.

Speaking at the 9th Energistics-sponsored National Data Repository meet in New Delhi, Ashok Kumar (ONGC) offered a company perspective of the proposed NDR for India. The benefits for operators stem from better management of the huge data volumes generated during the E&P process. NDRs promise information on demand and better interaction between oils, service companies and government. Much still needs to be decided, not least, who is to operate and fund the new NDR and what obligations are incumbent on oil companies in regard to data reporting. A consensus needs to be found that allows operators to ‘keep their data-centric commercial interests intact.’

An update on Brazil’s E&P database (BDEP) run by the ANP National Petroleum Agency portrayed a mature NDR run by the regulator. In Brazil companies are legally obliged to provide ANP with all their E&P data. ANP then maintains the data making it available to the public. This means that the BDEP now holds data on 24,000 wells, some 13TB of post stack seismic and 2 petabytes of field data. ANP’s in-house SIATA software administers the BDEP archive.

Lee Allison (Arizona Geological Survey) showed how a web services approach is being used in the USA build the Geosciences Information Network (GIN) from a large number of disparate data sources. GIN wrappers are being developed for 2,000 plus databases and thousands of sample and map collections. GIN leverages open source standards and protocols (OGC, GeoSciML). GIN was adopted by the US Dept. of Energy in May, 2009. More from

Jose Luis Figueroa described a mature NDR, Pemex’ @ditep database. @ditep supports Pemex’ E&P process and reporting optimization effort, integrating technical, government and financial data. @ditep provides access to a wide range of surface and subsurface data types. Figueroa noted that ‘non-stop proliferation’ of Excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations and ‘private’ data sets were obstacles on the road to NDR success. In Mexico, dealing with a century of data ‘backlog’ also proved difficult. Data ownership frequently needed clarification and often, ’ executives lack a real understanding of the challenges.’ But Pemex now considers that the value of the information contained in @ditep has been demonstrated and is working to increase its user base (currently 50% of E&P workers).

Joe Neely (SAIC) offered would be NDR builders a short course in ‘sustainable data management.’ SAIC has developed a methodology to ‘establish and improve’ NDRs by ‘bringing order from chaos’ and realizing the true value of Exploration and Production data investment opportunities.

Stewart Robinson of the UK’s Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) called for further collaboration on the development of government data exchange standards. Robinson suggests the establishment of a working group under the auspices of Energistics to prototype some simple solutions to reporting. Earlier this year, the DECC released its own ‘FoxOpen’ portal development as open source technology. Portal technology has allowed the UK to build oil regulatory systems quickly and cheaply with online forms, secure, digitally signed, data workflows and reporting. More on FoxOpen in this month’s ‘Standards Stuff’ section.

Helen Stephenson (Stephenson & Associates) held a workshop on NDR Opportunities for emerging nations. The workshop addressed practical considerations such as staffing and training requirements, the use of external consultants in the early stages and the need to afford ‘low level’ data management activities with skilled resources and recognition. Stephenson recommends the appointment of a head of data management alongside managers of other technical departments. Foreign operators working in the country are encouraged to train NDR staff in their data centers. Data management has always been the poor relation of petroleum exploration and production and, although everyone agrees that it is important, few companies and organizations do it well. More from Energistics.

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