Visual Computing Challenges and Solutions for Smart Oil/Gas Exploration & Production

  • Date: 05/14/2013
Mario Costa Sousa, UCalgary

Calgary Place Tower (Shell)


Visual Computing Challenges and Solutions for Smart Oil/Gas Exploration & Production



Exploration and Production (E&P) of oil/gas involve economically valuable but complex tasks. They comprise workflows with pipelined processes and inter-related disciplines (e.g. Geophysics, Geology, Reservoir and Production Engineering, Business and Economic Analysis) throughout the E&P life cycle of Exploration, Appraisal, Development and Production. In this cycle, large amounts of multi-modal data are generated presenting various levels of inaccuracies, sparseness, scale, dimensions and uncertainty.

Creating software applications that ensure users to gain insightful and actionable information from such vast amounts of complex oil/gas E&P datasets is a challenging problem. Visual Computing technology (Interactive Modeling, Visualization and Analytics) plays a critical role in such applications. The fundamental goal is to present, transform and convert data into an efficient and effective visual representation that users can rapidly, intuitively and easily model, explore, understand, and analyze. As a result, data is transformed into information and then into knowledge.

Today, visual computing in oil/gas E&P faces great challenges due to the intersection of advances in several fields (e.g. Scientific & Information Visualization, Applied Mathematics, Visual Analytics, Computer Graphics, High-Performance Computing, Human-Computer Interaction) with requirements for novel reservoir modeling,  visualization and analytics software tools and technology, E&P data and application integration, and  multi-disciplinary collaborative decision-making.

In this presentation I will discuss and motivate fundamental and applied R&D being conducted in my research group on key issues about these challenges and the requirements for novel visual computing solutions throughout the E&P cycle. I will bring specific examples from our projects with the oil/gas industry within three key project themes: (1) modeling, data management and knowledge representation; (2) data visualization and analytics techniques and approaches; (3) interaction techniques and technology. These themes have been identified in conjunction with our industry partners and collaborators from the oil/gas industry as necessary to solve targeted current and future problems on a short, medium and long-term basis.

Other Information: 

Location: Calgary Place Tower 1 (330 5th Avenue SW), Room 1116 and 1118


Time: 12:00-1:00 pm






is grateful for the support of Shell Canada Limited, Alberta Enterprise
and Advanced Education, and the University of Calgary for their
support of this series of lectures.