Ocean User Group, Denver

State of the Ocean, Petrobras’ BR-PlugIn, Ocean in education, Resoptima, Blueback Reservoir...

Around 60 turned out for Schlumberger’s Ocean User Group* held in Denver following the SEG Convention. In his ‘State of the Ocean’ address, product manager Brad Youmans described Ocean as a technology and business ecosystem of 30 oils, 40 software houses and 20 academic institutions. Ocean lets users ‘focus on science, not on infrastructure.’ For vendors Ocean is an integration pathway to Petrel. Ocean also is having a major impact within Schlumberger. The wireline, drilling and completions divisions are leveraging Ocean to get their products’ data into Petrel’s 3D canvas and Ocean is now supported by WesternGeco with seismic data management, 2D components and a geoscience window for processors. The Ocean Store launched earlier this year and there are over 50 plug-ins available and a further 50 academic projects are ripe for commercialization. Some 870 developers have taken the five day certification course.

Luiz Araujo revealed that Petrel is now Petrobras’ ‘official’ reservoir characterization solution. Petrel has been fine tuned to Petrobras’ needs in the ‘BR Plug-In’ program. BR-Plug-In builds on earlier test developments with Ocean and aims to homogenize coding, focus development effort and make data connections easier. When Petrobras saw Microsoft Visual Studio 2010, ‘it was like Alice in Wonderland!’ And a consolidation on Visual Studio Team Foundation Server quickly followed. BR-Plug-ins developed include PetroLibNet for licensing, simulation, PetroLibOcean, visualization, units and CRS management. For Araujo, despite some limitations, ‘Ocean is a wonderful framework—the best we have found to date.’

Brad Wallet (Oklahoma University) proselytized enthusiastically for the C# programming language, which he sees as being of ‘more value to employers’ than Matlab, Fortran and Java—hence the University’s initiative to train geoscientists in Ocean programming and prototype new technologies. Student reactions have been mixed, some don’t like Ocean. Rapid prototyping can make for poor code. Ocean is a rich, complex environment with a significant learning curve. Ocean documentation is broad rather than deep and not always up to date.

Tore Felix Munck described how he quit his job at Trondheim University to found Resoptima and devote himself full time to Ocean development. Resoptima has developed a ‘practice-driven test driven development’ methodology for Ocean around JetBrains’ ReSharper Visual Studio add-on. The key is to keep tests simple and consistent. TypeMock is used to test code mock ups, ‘faking’ as yet undeveloped objects and to test methods under development. FinalBuilder is the recommended tool for test automation, TypeMock Isolator the recommended mocking framework.

Rob Hall introduced Blueback Reservoir’s Spatial Image Connector (SIC) for Petrel, developed in partnership with Spatial Energy. SIC allows digital imagery to be streamed into Petrel from web map servers. SIC, complete with an Ocean map view, menus and CRS management took a week to prototype. Apache Corp is a user.

In a webinar follow-up to the OUG, Schlumberger’s Thomas Gehmann explained how the Ocean API has been extended with CRS management. ‘CRS-naïve’ Petrel mandates conflation policies for managing spatial data as it is imported and exported. This is now possible with the concept of a ‘hub’ projection and transformations that leverage EPSG transformations. But Gehman warned, ‘Even if we try to keep it simple, CRS problems are not really related to software. Geodesy-related issues are our clients’ real problem.’

* www.oilit.com/links/1011_7

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