Exprodat provides GIS and information management solutions to the upstream oil and gas industry, blending GIS, IT, geoscience, and oil and gas industry expertise. They specialize in improving upstream petroleum E&P processes by helping oil and gas industry companies apply GIS technology.
Exprodat, the oil and gas geospatial systems specialist, has released its popular Unconventionals Analyst extension for use with Esri’s ArcGIS Pro desktop GIS application.
Unconventionals Analyst supports geoscientists, reservoir engineers, data scientists and GIS specialists developing and managing shale oil, shale gas, coal bed methane and tight sand fields. Users of the software realise huge benefits in cost-savings and operational efficiencies – they do this by easily estimating the number and length of wells that could be drilled within their acreage, rapidly modelling holistic well development plans that take into account complex regulatory constraints to operations, while also calculating the proved undeveloped reserve areas that can be booked with the regulator based on the wells drilled.
These workflows enable unconventionals operators to answer crucial questions such as ‘how many wells and pads do I need to drill my acreage?” or “how much acreage can I book with the regulator?”
Chief Operating Officer of Exprodat, Chris Jepps, explains more about the enhancements within his company’s latest software release and what this will mean for unconventional producers around the world; “In the last 18 months we have seen a surge in interest for ArcGIS Pro across the petroleum industry, and we continue to be a leading Esri partner by releasing further extensions for the world’s most powerful desktop GIS software. With Unconventionals Analyst for ArcGIS Pro we have been able to re-design, enhance and modernise the software, adding new functionality and enhancing algorithms, all the while increasing operational efficiency for our customers.
The 2019 Esri User Conference (UC) gets underway in San Diego on July 8th, and Esri has released its annual UC Q&A. The Q&A sets the scene for the UC; gives an update on Esri’s strategy; and answers questions about its software development, products, education, and support.
As last year, the Q&A site is interactive and searchable, but to save you a little time, here are some highlights that I think might be relevant for folk in Petroleum and the other Natural Resources communities that we work with.
The theme of this year’s UC, GIS – The Intelligent Nervous System, draws a parallel between the responsive nature of a nervous system and the emerging capabilities of a GIS. It’s actually quite a neat parallel, with Esri highlighting that “GIS resembles a nervous system in the sense that it brings together data from many sources including traditional systems of record, real-time sensor networks, and historical information” – just like our own human nervous system.
The building blocks of this “intelligent nervous system” are seen by Esri to be People, Data and the Web GIS architecture (maps, layers, web scenes, apps, portals, Living Atlas, etc).
The Plenary session, always inspiring, looks especially interesting this year with a chance to hear from ExxonMobil – I suspect they will cover their ArcGIS Indoors implementation, which was presented at this year’s Petroleum GIS Conference in Houston. Jack will also welcome Jane Goodall (United Nations Messenger of Peace) and E.O. Wilson (University Research Professor Emeritus at Harvard University) to the stage to discuss conservation and biodiversity, and to explore how everyone can play a part in creating a more sustainable future.
50 not out
This year, Esri turns 50 (happy birthday!) and continues to be healthy, growing at a steady c. 10% globally per year. As last year, Esri reports that it spends more than 30% of its revenues on R&D.
A recent and noticeable positioning change for Esri has been its move from “ArcGIS Platform” to “Esri Geospatial Cloud” – an umbrella term that Esri is using to frame all its software and services offerings. The Esri Geospatial Cloud comprises all of ArcGIS (Online, Pro, Enterprise and the app ecosystem) as well as Esri’s new “Geo-Enabled Systems” – a phrase it uses to describe its workflow solution offerings: ArcGIS Hub, ArcGIS Indoors, ArcGIS Urban, ArcGIS Excalibur and ArcGIS Business Analyst.
Some of the key trends Esri is seeing from its users, on the technology side, are:
Migration to Web GIS architecture and pattern (Enterprise and Online)
Growth in organization-wide GIS deployment (all aspects of ArcGIS)
Embracing and adoption of ArcGIS Pro
Massive growth in the use of field operations apps
Widespread use of StoryMaps
Strong interest in Machine Learning and AI
Adoption of Python notebooks for automation and integration of data science
The Q&A reveals that Esri now has an entire initiative on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning, including its AI partnership with Microsoft, whereby Esri technology is included in Microsoft’s new Data Science Virtual Machine.
Esri’s 64-bit desktop application goes from strength-to-strength. ArcGIS Pro has new tools for editing, data management, cartography, space/time analysis, and spatial statistics – including tools that integrate proven machine learning methods such as Random Forest.
A new GeoAnalytics Desktop Toolbox brings a powerful set of analytical tools into ArcGIS Pro that are powered by Spark and allow desktop users to take advantage of the parallel compute resources at their fingertips. This toolbox delivers 20 commonly used spatial and temporal analysis tools and can leverage multiple CPUs to perform parallel processing against big datasets.
Esri have integrated full motion video into the ArcGIS platform. Within ArcGIS Pro, you can now display and map full motion video as part of an ArcGIS Pro project. From the video player in ArcGIS Pro, you can collect features and visualize them on the map, as well as draw features on your map and see them display in the video. Sounds pretty cool!
Shortly before UC, Esri will release ArcGIS Pro 2.4. Highlights include:
Dynamic Feature Binning
ModelBuilder to Python script export (huzzah!)
Parcel Editing Tools
Parallel Desktop Processing (see above)
Animated Water Symbology
A new Raster Pixel Editor
Additional Multipatch Editing tools
At ArcGIS Pro 2.3 Esri added the capability to publish map services direct to ArcGIS Server via Python. At the 2.4 release Esri have added a new User Interface and extended support to include feature, image, and analysis services.
Announced ahead of UC last year, Esri’s work on ArcGIS Enterprise Sites continues. Sites allows you to create multiple web pages that can have their own design, branding, and layouts – powered by an ArcGIS Enterprise portal.
Esri are building and will soon be releasing a next-generation storytelling tool, called ArcGIS StoryMaps. This product is more than just a new app template – with Esri using all its StoryMaps learning from the past seven years to re-imagine, redesign, and rebuild the platform from scratch. One of the key design features will be that you don’t need to pick, and be stuck with, a particular layout/behaviour template up-front – instead the new ArcGIS StoryMaps will have a unified builder, giving you the flexibility to mix and match content blocks and change template/style even after your initial app set-up.
On the mobile app front, a new product called ArcGIS QuickCapture has recently been announced. This is Esri’s “rapid data collection app” and is specifically designed to “support at-speed and rapid data collection workflows, where users demand an extremely simple and streamlined data collection user experience while on the go”, such as at-speed asset inventories, aerial surveys, pipeline patrols, on-the-go inspections and crop scouting.
For the geodesists amongst you, Esri has announced support for the Equal Earth projection – an equal-area pseudocylindrical projection for world maps. Similar to the Robinson projection, it has a “pleasing appearance” for land features. Available in ArcGIS Pro 2.3 and ArcGIS 10.7.0 and above.
ArcGIS Analytics for IoT is a new software-as-a-service (SaaS) capability coming “later this year”, offering cloud-based real-time and big data analysis at scale. Essentially, it will provide the capabilities of Esri Real-Time and Big Data GIS products (GeoEvent Server, GeoAnalytics Server, and the spatiotemporal big data store) as a service on ArcGIS Online, which should really simplify these workflow implementations.
Esri continues to expand the support for new database management systems. Last year Esri added geodatabase support for SAP HANA, as well as support for Microsoft Azure Database for PostgreSQL and Amazon Aurora PostgreSQL.
Insights Local is currently in beta, and it sounds as though it will allow analysts to run ArcGIS Insights in an offline setting, i.e. in a disconnected environment with no internet access. Insights Local is delivered as a client application – installed natively on either a Windows or Mac device.
ArcGIS Online users will have to wait a little while yet before group layers are supported, although Esri hope to complete the UI and functional update to Map Viewer that will enable this by “the end of the year and into 2020”.
Finally, slated for release in 2020, is ArcGIS Mission, a “Geo-Enabled System” that sounds like a new Common Operating Picture offering comprising a set of “mission-focused, real-time situational awareness and collaboration tools for a comprehensive understanding of the operating environment.”
After January 14th 2020, Esri will no longer support use of Windows 7, Windows Server 2008, and Windows Server 2008 R2 with Esri software. Esri recommend that if you’re still using these, you should migrate to Windows 10, Windows Server 2016 or Windows Server 2019 as soon as you can.
And last but by no means least, at last(!) Esri have released some detail about the expected lifespan of ArcMap. With ArcGIS 10.7.1 expected around UC, Esri plan on releasing ArcMap 10.8 with ArcGIS 10.8 in 2020. But the real news is that after 10.8, ArcMap support will be limited to providing patches, updates, and new environment support. So, it looks, for now at least, as though ArcMap 10.8.x releases will be the final versions. Esri, along with Exprodat, encourage everyone to move to ArcGIS Pro as soon as they can complete their workflows.
See you there!
If you’re coming to the UC, do visit Exprodat and other Esri partners at the Petroleum User Group/Mining User Group Social on Tuesday 9th July, starting at 6pm on the Coronado Terrace of the Marriott Marquis, San Diego.
One of the new features introduced in ArcGIS Pro 2.3 is the ability to have more than one Definition Query saved for an individual layer. This examples uses well data from OGA. Load the layer into ArcGIS Pro, and open the Layer Properties. Click on Definition Query. The new dialog has a drop-down menu which allows you to either create a new query or load an existing one from a file.
By clicking Create a new query, the dialog gives you the tools to create your Definition Query. This should look familiar to anyone who has worked with Definition Queries in ArcGIS previously. By default, the first query created is called Definition Query 1. This can be renamed by clicking on the text on the top of the query window.
Once you have completed the query, click Apply to set it to the layer. At this point you can add more queries by clicking the New definition query drop-down below the queries on the left. The image below shows queries created to filter wells by Appraisal, Exploration and Development status. If you look closely, you can see the green ticks next to Appraisal and Exploration are faded: this means they are inactive. The Development query is currently the active query on this layer.
A key benefit of this is the ability to quickly toggle between queries. Rather than having to open the Layer Properties each time you want to switch between Definition Queries, you can use the ribbon menu. When the layer you are working on is highlighted in the Contents pane, click on the Data tab in the Feature Layer section of the ribbon. Then you can use the drop-down on the left-hand side to switch between your Definition Queries for that layer. This lets you quickly explore the data without creating multiple layers with different queries on.
When working with polygon data in ArcGIS Pro, there are cases where polygons sit on top of one another. One example of this is hydrocarbon field outlines in the North Sea. I’ve downloaded some of the OGA field production data and displayed this in ArcGIS Pro. I added a Definition Query to only show oil production for October 2018. I want to visualize this production data for fields, but the polygons here are obscuring some of the data where fields overlap one another.
There are various ways to get around this. I could apply transparency or use symbol levels. Transparency can have performance implications, especially if I want to display the data in a Map Service. Using symbol levels may not work well in this case, either, as there is no clear relationship between the fields and the order in which to display them.
As of ArcGIS Pro 2.3 there is a new way to see all the data in this scenario, which is to apply the symbology to the polygon outline, rather than the polygon fill. If I symbolize the data as usual in the Symbology pane – using Unique Values, Graduated Colors, etc. – I can use the small gear symbol next to the colour ramp to choose how to apply the symbology: i.e. based on fill, outline or both fill and outline.
In this case, I choose to Apply to outline and then I get the result below.
This gives a clearer view of the field production data showing fields which underlie others (in drawing order terms, not stratigraphically). In the east of the map, what looked like one field in the polygon fill can be seen to be three fields by outline, for example.
While attending the upcoming Esri Petroleum GIS conference in Houston, Texas, Exprodat will be showcasing the enhancements to its latest Unconventionals Analyst software; recently upgraded to ArcGIS Pro.
Unconventionals Analyst is an extension to Esri’s ArcGIS for use in unconventional resource projects such as shale gas, shale oil, coal bed methane (CBM) or coal seam gas (CSG). It enables land, drilling and subsurface teams to holistically plan field developments in order to streamline operations; and to evaluate reserve areas during production.
Chris Jepps, Exprodat and Getech Group COO, explains how energy companies will benefit from using the latest version of this innovative software; “Unconventionals Analyst allows its customers to dramatically cut complex, time-consuming and data intensive inventory planning and reserve area evaluation workflows. The ArcGIS Pro version of Unconventionals Analyst is a significant upgrade – including numerous enhancements to its well planning algorithms, allowing the software to create even more production-efficient results. We have seen onshore operators using the software to reduce well development planning projects from months to days, while saving themselves significant costs by planning more efficient drilling patterns and avoiding unnecessary pad re-design costs.”
If you are visiting the Esri Petroleum GIS Conference between 15th and 16th May 2019 at the George R. Brown Convention Center, then visit booth #306 to see the software in action and learn more about how Exprodat’s ArcGIS expertise can help your organization.
Following my previous blog highlighting my top features of Data Assistant on ArcGIS Pro, I thought it might be useful to highlight some of my favourite features for our recently released Exploration Analyst for ArcGIS Pro too.
1. Interacting with the Map while processing
Whilst I’m creating play chance layers, I like to pan around the map to remind myself how my input geological maps look. Then when the process finishes and the chance map overlays, I can see how it relates to the inputs.
It’s also helpful when choosing your value mapping settings, you don’t have to close the tool to zoom in or out, as shown in the screenshots below.
2. Spatial Balance Check tool
I like to QC my play chance maps using this tool which is new to the “Pro” release of Exploration Analyst. It compares the average play chance across your area against a rolling average of drilling exploration success through time. Allowing you to see if your play chance map is optimistic, pessimistic, or realistic.
3. Selecting features from a graph
Breaking your hydrocarbon fields into equal time intervals is a great way to visualise how trends change over time, but what if I want to see from that graph where the fields are located? Simply drag a box to select from the graph and they will be highlighted on the map. This feature was requested by our customers and we listened.
Exploration manager: “Great graphs and statistics you’ve got there for the country, can you break that down into basins, so I know which basin looks the best?”
Past me: “Sure, but it’s going to take me a while, I’ll come back to you in a couple of days.”
Exploration Analyst me: “Sure, give me a minute to run the batch export.”
Simply select your polygon layer (e.g. “Basins”), and a unique Identifier (e.g. “Basin Name”), the click Export – the tool will export all your selected graphs and statistics for each basin. So, for example, you’ll have a Creaming Curve, Pool Size Histogram, Pool Size Distribution, Pool Density, and Pool Size Statistics for each individual Basin in the same style.
5. Dark Theme
If you find the default Light Theme strains your eyes, then try the Dark Theme! The darker tones are a lot more comfortable, plus you can check out our cool Dark Theme icons!
If you’re interested in using Exploration Analyst on ArcGIS Pro, contact us to find out more.
Posted by Rich Webb, Product Specialist, Exprodat.
Having recently released our first ArcGIS Pro version of Data Assistant, and hearing more and more people talking about their switch from ArcMap to ArcGIS Pro, I thought it might be useful to highlight some of my favourite features of Data Assistant on “Pro” to help our customers get up and running.
1. The Import All tool
This tool is a geoscientist’s dream. Simply point it at a folder with all the data you want imported into ArcGIS Pro, Data Assistant will identify which file types are present, pick a geodatabase to load the data to and hit the Run button. The data will be seamlessly imported into your project.
2. Easier to set the Spatial Reference
I like this new method of selecting the projection of the file you’re importing from the dropdown. You can easily match it to the current map or layers within the map, without having to manually pick the correct spatial reference.
3. Data Assistant 1-minute How To videos
We’ve created a series of short “how to” videos with a “Data Assistant in under 1-minute” theme. These show you how to use the Data Assistant tools to quickly shift data from industry standard interpretation software, such as Petrel and KINGDOM, into ArcGIS Pro.
4. Dark Theme
I use ArcGIS Pro a lot. The default Light Theme is pretty bright and can strain your eyes. Try Dark Theme – the darker tones are a lot easier on the eye for long periods of use.
Exprodat, the petroleum ArcGIS platform specialist, Esri Gold-level Partner and Getech Group company, has been awarded the Release Ready Speciality by Esri Inc.
The Release Ready Specialty designation is only awarded to those Esri business partners who are able to prove their expertise and capability in understanding, adopting and promoting the latest versions of Esri technology.
Exprodat works with oil and gas companies around the world and its staff are relied upon to provide the know-how and expertise needed to implement the Esri GeoSpatial Cloud within exploration and production organisations and workflows.
These skills, combined with the company’s commitment to providing software and solutions supporting the lastest Esri products and versions, are the reasons that Exprodat has been awarded this prestigious title.
Chris Jepps, Chief Operating Officer for the Getech Group, explains how the Release Ready Specialty partner award reflects his company’s efforts in the past and what it will mean for Exprodat clients in the future;
“We are delighted to have been recognised for our commitment to keeping current with Esri technology – something we have worked very hard on since productising our own training, software and services some 15 years ago. A great example of this is our “ArcGIS Pro for Petroleum” training course that was available and released on the same day as ArcGIS Pro itself, which was no mean feat! More recently we are very proud to have upgraded our entire Software suite to ArcGIS Pro, bringing our tools for petroleum data integration, play-based exploration and shale oil well inventory planning into Esri’s next generation desktop GIS application.”
On behalf of Esri, Geoff Wade – Director Industry Solutions, Natural Resources Sector commented:
“This award builds on many years of dedicated commitment from Exprodat as an Esri Gold Partner. Exprodat’s leadership in staying current with the ArcGIS platform creates tremendous value for our mutual clients, in allowing them to take swift advantage of new product developments, which many within the community have helped guide. The Release Ready designation exemplifies the very real level of trust and partnership that our customers can have, in knowing that Exprodat’s products and services will always be compatible with the latest ArcGIS releases.”
Raster functions have been around in ArcGIS Pro for some time now. They work slightly differently to traditional raster data processing. Instead of writing out a new raster image with each step, they create a virtual raster (that only exists “in memory”) which is calculated based on the input raster(s) values. This allows output to be created very quickly. Some functions require Spatial Analyst (SA) or Image Analyst (IA) extensions, while others are available without extensions. A full list of the Raster Functions can be found here.
For this example, I used some Sentinel 2 imagery which can be downloaded from the Copernicus Open Access Hub. I then loaded some of the image bands to ArcGIS Pro. Go to the Imagery tab and click Raster Functions. This will open the Raster Functions Pane. Expand Math and choose the Calculator function. (Note: Calculator requires SA or IA extension).
This will open the dialog for the Calculator. It allows you to define raster data or layers as variables and then use those defined variables to construct an algorithm.
In this example, I am doing a simple ratio between Sentinel 2 bands 12 and 8 (these are similar wavelength ranges to Landsat TM7 bands 7 and 4). Once a variable is defined in the calculator, it will appear in intellisense (you can see the popup in the image below showing b8 and b12 as options), along with various other available mathematical functions.
Once you have completed the formula, it is possible to either create the result in the current map “in memory” or save it out as a permanent raster file.
Click Create new layer to add the resulting processed image to your map.
It is then possible to create a series of ratio images and make a composite of those ratio images. This can highlight features of interest to your study.
The image below is RGB Sentinel2 band ratios 4/3, 11/3, 12/8 (Landsat TM7 band ratios 3/2, 5/2, 7/4). It was created using the Composite Bands raster function.
Exprodat, the Getech Group company and Esri Gold Partner, while attending the 2018 Esri Business Partner Conference in Palm Springs, California, was interviewed by Esri’s E360 video channel about its development work with ArcGIS Pro.
Exprodat has three ArcGIS Desktop extensions which it has been upgrading from ArcMap to ArcGIS Pro; Data Assistant, Unconventional Analyst and Exploration Analyst. These software products are used within the oil and gas industry to simplify complex petroleum-specific workflows focused on data integration, well planning and exploration.
Exprodat’s Chief Operating Officer, Chris Jepps, had the pleasure to be interviewed by the E360 team and during the interview explained, “The new modern architecture of ArcGIS Pro allowed us to really upgrade our end-user experience and to create some very modern looking graphing and UI. The migration to ArcGIS Pro has also allowed us to streamline many of the software workflows for our users.”
Watch the full Esri E360 video to hear how Exprodat upgraded its software products to ArcGIS Pro and the benefits this has brought its customers.