Posted on January 20, 2014

His Excellency Dr. Mohamed Bin Saleh Al-Sada, Minister of Energy and Industry, has officially opened the new Digital Core Laboratory at the Maersk Oil Research and Technology Centre (MO-RTC) in Doha, Qatar. During the opening ceremony, H.E. Dr. Al-Sada also witnessed the signing of a technology cooperation framework agreement between Qatar Petroleum (QP) and Maersk Oil.

The Maersk Oil Digital Core Laboratory -- the first of its kind in the Middle East region -- will support ongoing applied research efforts in the area of enhanced oil recovery (EOR), particularly in carbonate reservoirs such as Qatar’s Al Shaheen oil field, which is one of the most complex in the world.

Energy Minister inaugurates Maersk Oil’s new digital core laboratory in Doha 2 [qatarisbooming.com].JPG

The laboratory is part of a ten-year USD100 million investment by Maersk Oil in applied research in Qatar, focusing on improved oil recovery, enhanced oil recovery and the marine environment. H.E. the Minister of Energy and Industry congratulated Maersk Oil for bringing the Digital Core Laboratory to Qatar.

In comments on the occasion, H.E. Dr. Al-Sada said: “Qatar has made a commitment to be a leading center for research and development, excellence, and innovation. Therefore, research facilities like this play an important role in fulfilling that goal. We are hopeful that the laboratory and the research findings that it will generate would greatly contribute to the future development of Qatar’s energy industry.”

Jakob Thomasen, Maersk Oil’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “Working closely with our partner Qatar Petroleum, Maersk Oil has become specialists in understanding and applying the right technologies to maximize long-term production potential and unlock value from the complex Al Shaheen field. The Maersk Oil Digital Core Laboratory is a world-class facility that further strengthens our commitment to the State of Qatar and to applied research and technology development here in Qatar.” 

Energy Minister inaugurates Maersk Oil’s new digital core laboratory in Doha 3 [qatarisbooming.com].JPG

By advancing understanding of the mineralogy of Al Shaheen reservoir rocks and of the subsurface chemistry and fluid flow relationship, the Digital Core Laboratory aims to improve enhanced oil recovery success rates.

Researchers at the Digital Core Laboratory use more than 13,000 X-ray images in a computed tomography (CT) scan to make a mathematical reconstruction of carbonate rock samples. The pores of oil-bearing rocks are studied at a minute level, down to a diameter of 40 times less than that of a human hair. When these data results are combined, a 3D image is produced that shows valuable petro-physical and flow-related information.

As part of the opening ceremony, a technology cooperation framework agreement was signed between the Maersk Oil Research and Technology Centre and the Qatar Petroleum Research & Technology Centre, allowing QP to use the Maersk Oil Digital Core Laboratory for individual or joint research activities.

Energy Minister inaugurates Maersk Oil’s new digital core laboratory in Doha 4 [qatarisbooming.com].JPG

Abdulrahman Al Emadi, Head of Maersk Oil’s Research and Technology Centre, said:  “The collaboration agreement builds on Maersk Oil’s close relationship over the past 20 years with Qatar Petroleum, our partner at Al Shaheen, and opens up the Digital Core Laboratory for the greater good of Qatar.’

Dr. Nasser Saqer Al-Mohannadi, Manager of Qatar Petroleum’s Research and Technology Centre, said: “We are delighted to sign the research collaboration agreement as this is an important step in further deepening and enhancing our existing relationship with Maersk Oil and its research team at the Qatar Science and Technology Park.”

In almost every aspect affecting production and ultimate recovery of oil, the Al Shaheen field is one of the world’s most complex carbonate fields.  At its Research and Technology Centre, Maersk Oil is committed to the long-term development of the field and, in doing so, contributing to the country’s sustainable development and in achieving the objectives of the Qatar National Vision 2030.

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