SPE Online Education
A Conversation on the Interdisciplinary Nature of Geomechanics in the Oil and Gas Industry
Recorded On: 09/06/2018
One of the most interesting aspects of applying oilfield geomechanics is arguably the amount of interdependency with other disciplines. While the pursuit of integrated, interdisciplinary approaches is increasingly common in our industry, this state of affairs can still be considered discretionary. This means that technical teams can freely judge the value of inviting the contribution from other disciplines given a state of imperfect information. One example of such condition is being unable to decide on the need of involving experts from other disciplines: Is it a lack of reliable data feeding our physics models or a missing piece of physics (or knowledge) captured only by another discipline?
Interestingly, such discretionary opportunities are very few in the world of geomechanics. Compared to many of the core subsurface and engineering disciplines in our industry, the application geomechanics is an essentially –and necessarily- integrated effort. This situation has interesting repercussions in modelling and communication strategies employed for geomechanics projects where the observations, measurements and results most likely belong to members of a different technical domain. While showing examples of the field applications of geomechanics, we will explore how geomechanical workflows have adapted to cater for the commonality of technically diverse stakeholders and how circumventing some of these challenges might find an audience in other disciplines, especially young professionals concerned with technical communication skills.
Numerical Geomechanics Expert
Mr. Rodriguez-Herrera is a numerical geomechanics expert with background in petroleum engineering, numerical methods and software development. He started his career with a series of assignments in Schlumberger technology centers for heavy oil and reservoir geomechanics. Over the past 9 years, his experiences have comprised a blend of innovation, software development and international consulting projects. Spanning topics around reservoir engineering, drilling, well integrity and hydraulic fracturing, his focus lies in the development of methodologies and software applications that bridge the gap between operational or geophysical observations and the underlying geomechanical mechanisms that could explain them. He has consulted on the application of these topics for operators in over 20 countries, and led the development of several of the enabling software technologies. Since 2016, he leads the Geomechanics Centre of Excellence in London, Schlumberger’s global consultancy team for oilfield applications of numerical geomechanics.
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