Energy giant Shell has done a deal with SparkCognition, which specialises in big-data analytics, to use its AI-based technology in its exploration and production activities.
The technology promises to radically accelerate the search for new reservoirs of hydrocarbons by analysing vast amounts of seismic data using SparkCognition’s algorithms. The main benefit of this is the ability to produce subsurface images with less seismic data than would usually be required. This means fewer seismic scans, which use sound waves to map areas under the seabed, are needed, reducing any disruption to the deep sea environment. Seismic surveys are also relatively expensive and time-consuming to undertake, so fewer scans will speed up the exploration process while also cutting the associated costs. The companies say the new technology will also reduce the need for high-performance computing.
SparkCognition’s chief science officer, Bruce Porter, said about the technology:
“Generative AI for seismic imaging can positively disrupt the exploration process and has broad and far-reaching implications.”
The overall aim is to improve the efficiency of the exploration process, such that a current nine-month exploration process can be completed in as little as nine days. In a statement, the vice president for innovation and performance at Shell, Gabriel Guerra, said about the technology:
“We are committed to finding new and innovative ways to reinvent our exploration ways of working.”
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