SEG Advanced Modeling Corporation receives RPSEA award

29 June 2009—The SEG Advanced Modeling (SEAM) Corporation announced today a US$2 million award from the Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America (RPSEA) under the Ultra-Deepwater Program. The award is for “Geophysical Modeling for Studying Acquisition and Processing Methods in the Deepwater Gulf of Mexico”. Work has commenced and the project is scheduled to be complete by July 2011. 

The SEAM initiative of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG) commenced in early 2007 with the launch of Phase I. Arthur Cheng, SEAM Board Chair stated “we are thrilled to receive this significant award from RPSEA. SEAM Phase I brings together 24 leading companies involved in exploration and production in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. The RPSEA award will build on this success and is a strong confirmation of SEAM’s vision of creating industrial strength earth models and geophysical simulations essential to addressing key challenges faced in resource extraction industries today.”

RPSEA President C. Michael Ming stated that “the Ultra-Deepwater Program is designed to bring the resources of America’s leading universities, research institutions and technology innovators to bear on reducing costs, increasing efficiency, improving safety, and minimizing environmental impacts of domestic production. We are particularly pleased by the collaborative role a professional society, in this case SEG through its SEAM subsidiary, can assume in bringing together a broad industry consortium to conduct leading edge research. Improved geophysical imaging in the ultra-deepwater Gulf of Mexico has the potential to add substantial reserves to the nation’s domestic supply and ultimately increased production.”

The goal of the project is to develop a suite of synthetic geophysical datasets that can be used by industry and the geophysical research community to improve reservoir imaging techniques. Synthetic data will be acquired over an existing SEAM numerical earth model that represents a 60-block sub-salt exploration area in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico. The datasets to be generated in this project include: acoustic and elastic seismic, controlled source electromagnetic, magnetotelluric, and gravity data. Ultimately, these synthetic datasets will be used by researchers to develop best practices for acquisition and processing of geophysical imaging data in deep, complex hydrocarbon reservoirs; particularly those in difficult to illuminate regions where salt bodies or other complexities are present.


About SEAM
The SEG Advanced Modeling Corporation mission is to advance the science and technology of applied geophysics though cooperative industry efforts focused on subsurface model construction and generation of geophysical datasets for geophysical problems of importance to the resource-extraction industry. SEAM provides opportunities for companies to share the high cost of model design and data simulation, provides a forum for industry leaders to discuss geophysical problems of common interest, advances the art of modeling and computation by stimulating research and development, and provides datasets for industry benchmarks and educational purposes. The SEAM Phase I project currently has 24 Participating Companies. SEAM Corporation was formed in 2007 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists. For more information about SEAM Corporation and the SEAM Phase I project visit our Web site.

Funding for the projects is provided through the “Ultra-Deepwater and Unconventional Natural Gas and Other Petroleum Resources Research and Development Program” authorized by the Energy Policy Act of 2005. This program—funded from lease bonuses and royalties paid by industry to produce oil and gas on federal lands—is specifically designed to increase supply and reduce costs to consumers while enhancing the global leadership position of the United States in energy technology through the development of domestic intellectual capital. RPSEA is under contract with the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory to administer several elements of the program. RPSEA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit consortium with more than 147 members, including 25 of the nation's premier research universities, five national laboratories, other major research institutions, large and small energy producers and energy consumers. The mission of RPSEA, headquartered in Sugar Land, Texas, is to provide a stewardship role in ensuring the focused research, development and deployment of safe and environmentally responsible technology that can effectively deliver hydrocarbons from domestic resources to the citizens of the United States.  Additional information can be found on our Web site.


Peter Pangman
Director Geophysics
Tel: +1.918.497.5518

Art Schroeder
Manager, Ultra-Deepwater Technology
Tel: +1.713.372.2817