Unconventional knowhow

The first in-person meeting in LATAM of the classic URTeC event for the world of Unconventional resources was held in Buenos Aires. We spoke with Lucas Pons and Lucrecia Gava, who presented papers at this international congress.

Get ready to read a lot of acronyms! December 4-6 saw the first in-person edition of URTeC LATAM (the Latin America Unconventional Resources Technology Conference), an event organized jointly by the SPE (Society of Petroleum Engineers), the AAPG (American Association of Petroleum Geologists) and the SEG (Society of Exploration Geophysicists).

With Buenos Aires as this year’s venue, the event is held yearly to share the latest knowledge acquired in the perennially challenging and dynamic field of unconventional exploration and production. For Lucas Pons, Development Engineer Lead Analyst, and author of one of the papers presented, “It’s crucial to be able to exchange knowledge with industry colleagues working in the development of unconventional hydrocarbons. Since shales started being developed in the United States, the goal is to achieve optimum levels of technical and operational synergy, as much with other operators as with service companies facing challenges similar to those we have to tackle at Tecpetrol."

Alejandro Laurara, Development Geomechanist Lead Analyst.His presentation to an attentive audience.

“As the development of unconventional hydrocarbons in Argentina, in particular at Vaca Muerta, has been growing very fast, the decision was taken to hold this year’s URTeC LATAM in person for the first time in Buenos Aires. Luckily, there wasn’t just a great turnout at national level, but it also attracted several colleagues working in the basins in the U.S., and it turned into an ideal opportunity to share what we’ve learned, transmit what’s being studied and discuss proposals for new technical improvements," Lucas expands.

Tecpetrol is heading up critical advances in these fields. The company presented a total of seven papers, co-authored with colleagues from other companies, ample evidence of its commitment. Lucrecia Gava, RTOC (Real Time Operations Center) Project Specialist, shares the excitement of presenting with the Completion Principal a paper on the first steps in early detection of wireline problems. “My experience was doubly rewarding, as on the one hand, it was great to have such enthusiastic collaboration from the completion team, and on the other, extremely satisfying to have the confirmation that our pioneering work has sparked interest and shows potential for addressing industry concerns.”

Synergies and shared knowledge are part-and-parcel of horizontal growth for the entire sector. Each meeting ends with a number of objectives achieved, new goals set, and a lot of learning. “Tecpetrol's participation in all the activities taking place during the conference means we can stay up-to-date and raise the standards of our practices. At the same time, our presence also prompts discussion about what’s next in Vaca Muerta and the development of other shale formations at country level, such as for example, the Palermo Aike formation in the Austral Basin and the D-129 formation in the Gulf Basin,” explains Lucas. But that’s for next time! Meanwhile, the remit is to continue producing knowledge and continue growing.

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