Walter Pierce

Donation solidifies UL's position as leading petroleum research center

by Walter Pierce

Petroleum engineering students at UL Lafayette are now equipped with a multi-million dollar software package that fives them access to the same exploration and production modelling in use by the oil and gas industry. Oilfield services company Schlumberger donated the $17.5 million dollar package to the department, including 17 licenses of ECLIPSE Parallel, a software created by Schlumberger that simplifies oil and gas reservoir simulation. The gift also includes licenses for other software devoted to seismic interpretation, geologic modeling and economic analysis of the oil and gas industry.

Already, 30 undergraduate students majoring in petroleum engineering have used ECLIPSE in their senior design projects.

With exploration and drilling costs on the rise, such software has become critical to cost management. “As the reservoirs in the U.S. and other areas of the world mature,” notes Dr. Ali Ghalambor, director of UL’s Energy Institute, “we need to have additional sophisticated tools to look into reservoir potentials and explore the possibility of finding new petroleum resources as well as getting more out of existing reserves.”