Project Highlights

 

Providence was founded in 1994 as a leading edge geophysical service and consulting company.  Our first contract was with Gas Research Institute (GRI) beginning in 1994, culminating some 10 years and 15 projects later.  Providence’s job was to assist GRI in evaluating, testing and commercializing emerging geophysical technologies under development with GRI funding. 

 

Among a number of notable successes was the Stanford Tomography Project, a very high resolution crosswell seismic imaging technology.  Providence conducted an extensive geologic and market study for GRI, Stanford and their commercial venture, Tomoseis.  We identified every producing reservoir in the United States greater than 50 million barrels of oil equivalent (MMBOE), and rank ordered them in terms of applicability of the technology, then identified by name, address and phone number the operators of each of these fields, to enable a commercial launch of Tomoseis.  Tomoseis’ launch was successful and, through a corporate evolution to Z Seis, they are now a profitable subsidiary of Schlumberger operating worldwide.

In 1995, Providence launched an extensive multi-year, non-exclusive 3D seismic survey in the West Texas Overthrust region of the Val Verde Basin (Pakenham / Val Verde 3D’s).  The program was sponsored by our clients ARCO, Chevron, Conoco, EOG, Hunt Energy, Mobil, Union Pacific Resources and several Texas independents.  Later project support came from our clients Oxy, Newfield and others.  The project was born as a result of our clients’ 1994 discoveries, using our 2D swath reconnaissance data in the same trend, in what is today a 5-7 TCF natural gas play in the West Texas Overthrust.

 

In 1996, CanOxy, now Nexen Energy, invited Providence to design, bid, acquire and supervise major 3D seismic data programs over their discovery areas in Al Masila Block, Yemen,.  CanOxy had drilled major discoveries in what are now Sunah and Heijah Fields (>200 MMBO each) but were unable to achieve interpretable 3D data due to exceedingly difficult terrain and source-generated noisy surfaces on the Hadrumat Highlands, similar to the terrain in the Val Verde Basin.  Providence’s 3D solutions resulted in hundreds of square kilometers of new, high resolution 3D data for CanOxy, enabling to see, drill, develop and expand their reservoirs into more than 400 million barrels of oil production.

In 2001, Providence began an R&D program, funded by the State of New Mexico, with Sandia National Laboratories to develop imaging methods to “see” below the scale of conventional seismic resolution in prolific, complex carbonate reservoirs like the Central Basin Platform of New Mexico / West Texas and the Arabian Platform.  Emerging today, after extensive work by Sandia Labs, joined in 2007 by Los Alamos National Labs, is a methodology called “Direct Porosity Detection.” (DPD).  DPD is a computational modeling process, integrating 3D seismic with porosity and density logs, along with geostatistics in specific wellbores and producing fields.  DPD can be used to prospect for significant reserves within bypassed porosity in complex producing reservoirs.  In the Central Basin Platform the target volume of bypassed oil is 5 billion barrels, 5 times the size of the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

In late 2011, Providence was awarded a patent from the U.S. Patent Office for “Directed Beam Seismic©”, now under development for field applications.  Directed Beam Seismic is a universal improvement to seismic data discussed in more detail at our “Technologies” page. Click here for more information on Directed Beam Seismic©.   

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