RCN supported petroleum research has triggered large volumes of oil resources. Ensemble Kalman Filter technology, one of the prioritized research fields at the Centre, is estimated to account for a significant part of the reserve increase.
A new report from Rystad Energy was published at the Offshore Strategy Conference in Stavanger Monday 3 February. It shows that projects supported by the Research Council in the period 2008-2018 have triggered an increase in reserve of the order of 890 million barrels of oil equivalent and an additional production of about 100 million barrels.
EnKF technology most important
These realized volume gains relate to three areas of technology:
- Advanced methods for reservoir understanding and enhanced recovery
- New seismic acquisition / processing methods
- Production Optimization
Within the former, development and use of so-called Ensemble Kalman Filter methodology (EnKF) has been particularly decisive. EnKF technology is estimated to account for over half of the realized reserve increase of 540 million barrels of oil equivalent. EnKF methodology is a set of statistics tools that enable more efficient use of the oil companies' core software within reservoir modeling and simulation to make better decisions about drilling and drilling drainage strategy.
The Research Council has supported the development of EnKF tools since the 1990s, also during the relevant time period for the Rystad Energy study (2008-2018).
At The National IOR Centre of Norway, our researchers have been working with this technology since the beginning in December 2013. The research in task 7 at the Centre is mainly EnKF technology. It was Geir Nævdal (picture), the leader of this research group within the IOR Centre, who initiated the EnKF technology for petroleum.
Read more about field scale evaluation and history matching research at the Centre here.
"Very good news"
The increase in reserves reported by Rystad Energy corresponds to almost twice the resources expected to be mined on Johan Castberg, a large field for a relatively mature shelf like the Norwegian.
«The report from Rystad Energy is very good news. It confirms that the support for petroleum research results in significantly increased value creation, large cost savings, new jobs and new technology to reduce climate and environmental impacts,» says Oil and Energy Minister Tina Bru.
In addition to reserve growth EnKF technology also entails accelerated production which the technology has led to, for example at the Tor field.