Introduction to the E&P business

Trainer(s): Edward van Riessen
Duration: 5 days, can be shortened or extended

Business context

New and administrative staff in the oil & gas business, or staff in organizations working with the oil industry, often has insufficient understanding of the "upstream" part of the business. This course provides a full overview of exploration for hydrocarbons, field development and operations, processing and transportation of oil and gas.  The history of the business, project economics and global and political issues are also discussed.

Who should attend

New technical staff and administrative staff in the oil & gas business. Staff in organizations working with the oil industry (investment banks, service industry).

Course content

  • History of the oil industry, current issues.
  • Geological concepts, global distribution of hydrocarbons, nature and geometry of hydrocarbon reservoirs.
  • Methods and tools used for hydrocarbon exploration, including drilling.
  • Field appraisal and static models of reservoirs,
  • Assessing amounts of hydrocarbons-in-place and its uncertainties.
  • Dynamic models and subsurface development options, surface engineering and field operations.
  • Project economics.
  • Environmental issues.

Learning, methods and tools

At the end of the course participants will have a good but general understanding of the 'upstream' oil and gas business: how hydrocarbons are found, developed, produced and treated prior to sales.

Participants will work in teams on an actual field case, and will go through all steps that lead to a field development plan, including an economic assessment.

Depending on the participants and learning objectives, the course may be run as a three day short event.

Alternatively, for new technical staff, the course can be extended to a basic technical E&P introduction module of two to three weeks, in which case it will be run by two trainers. At least three months notice is required for this version.

Day by day programme

Day 1, Focus on the energy business, geology principles

Introduction of participants and trainer, course program

Scope of the energy / oil & gas business

  • History of the oil & gas business, technology breakthroughs
  • Major players in the industry
  • Activities in E&P
  • Global energy resources
  • Oil price review and scenario's
  • Global issues, PR and environment

General process of oil & gas development projects, life cycles

Team exercise "The Texel Development Project" 1:  Commercial, Environmental and PR issues, Exploration bid proposal. Given a description of the project activities and the geographical environment, make an outline of a bid proposal, environmental and PR plan.

Petroleum geology principles: Global geology, cycles, sedimentology, structures and traps

Day 2, Focus on exploration, drilling, subsurface data collection and interpretation.

  • Recap day 1
  • Exploration, Subsurface evaluation tools 1: Hydrocarbon basins/plays and the origin of hydrocarbons
  • Subsurface evaluation tools 2: Seismic
  • The Texel Development Project 2:  Volumetric uncertainty. Given the results of the exploration well and 3D seismic, estimate maximum and minimum volumes.
  • Basic drilling technology
  • Reservoir data gathering 1, well logging, petrophysical analysis

Day 3, Focus on petrophysics, reservoir appraisal and volumetrics, reservoir engineering

  • Recap day 2.
  • Reservoir data gathering 2:  logs, pressures, core analysis, well testing
  • Static models introduction, volumetrics, uncertainty and appraisal
  • The Texel Development Project 3: Appraisal Given the results of the exploration well and 3D seismic, make an appraisal plan.
  • Dynamic reservoir models, reservoir engineering

Day 4, Focus on surface development options, production technology

  • Recap day 3
  • Well completion technology, horizontal wells, artificial lift, fracking
  • Development planning: team exercise subsurface development options
  • The Texel Development Project 4: Given the static reservoir model and well performance, select development scenario's. A production forecast will be prepared based on one of these scenario's.
  • Surface facilities and engineering 1 : Oil & gas processing
  • Film: Troll  Field , "The last of the giants"

Day 5, Focus on surface development options, project economics

  • Recap day 4
  • Surface facilities and engineering  2: Production facilities, Field operations
  • The Texel Development Project 5: Select surface development options.  Given the production profile and facilities costs, prepare basic facilities design and a project schedule, and calculate the phased costs.
  • Basic project economics and financial performance indicators.
  • The Texel Development Project 6: Given phased project costs, production forecast and commercial and tax terms, calculate project economics and sensitivities using an Excel economics spreadsheet.    
  • Course review and round-up