Optique update - semantics in Statoil, Siemens

EU Optique researchers publish on ontology-based data access to Statoil’s disparate geodata.

As we reported in June 2014, the main successor to Norway’s integrated operations (IO) was the EU-sponsored Optique project which promised ‘ontology-based data access’ to different, incompatible sources. Statoil and Siemens were the only IO survivors to carry on into the Optique follow-up to IO.

A 2015 paper from the Optique team described how Ontology-based data access (Obda) uses an ontology to mediate between data users and data sources. The ontology exposes data in a conceptually clear manner by abstracting away from the underlying schema-level details. The ontology is connects to relational data sources via Bootox mappings that translate natural language queries into SQL. Users can thus request for instance, all wellbores that penetrate a rock layer of a specific geological age.

The test data sources were Statoil’s Exploration and Production Data Store (Epds), and the NPD fact pages. The 700GB Epds database has 3,000 tables and 37,000 columns. Writing queries against the Epds requires a significant effort and it is common for a query to contain thousands of terms and up to 200 joins. The Obda solution has been tested at Statoil and the authors report that it provides good execution times. Another ‘preliminary deployment’ is reported chez Optique partner Siemens. More from Optique.

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