Press coverage of Diskos

On 22 December 1993, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate organises a press conference in Stavanger where resource director Arild Nystad says that Statoil, Hydro and Saga Petroleum, in addition to the NPD, will join forces to establish a new joint geodatabank that could result in savings of at least NOK 50-100 million annually.

When all 15-20 companies on the Norwegian Shelf join Diskos, savings could reach between NOK 250-500 million a year.

The NPD’s resource director Arild Nystad tells the press that the new Geodatabank, which will be located in Stavanger, will yield major savings through more efficient processing of the vast data volumes from the Norwegian Shelf. The resource director says that the time saved by geophysicists in searching for relevant data can instead be used to find the 400 oil and gas fields that are still undiscovered on the Norwegian Shelf.

In order to illustrate just how vast these data volumes truly are, Nystad explains that 142 semitrailers would be needed to carry all of the information that is stored in the NPD and oil companies relating to the Norwegian Shelf. Nystad imagines that the technology being developed could be exported to international oil activities.

Head of Section Jon Stærkebye in Saga Petroleum says that the company has 200 geo-full-time equivalents and that 100 of these can be freed up when the new system is ready to use. This does not mean lost jobs, but rather that the company’s exploration capacity will increase by 100 full-time equivalents.

“This work is innovative in a global context and will strengthen the competitiveness of the Norwegian Shelf and the three oil companies,” says Kjell Arne Oppebøen in Norsk Hydro.

Head of department Kjell Reidar Knudsen in the NPD explains that it is often a long process to find what data exists, where they are stored, which versions are available and who is authorised to obtain them. The NPD will therefore collect data from 750 wells in a new joint database where shared quality assurance, standards and rights will make it much easier for users who can log on online to find what they need.

IBM received NOK 10 million to develop the software for the new databank, which will be operative from 1995.



THE OPENING: The official opening of the Diskos database took place on 15 March 1995 in the NPD’s offices, and was conducted by Stavanger’s Mayor, Leif Måsvær (Christian Democratic Party), on the right. The others in the photo are, from left; Kjell Arne Bjerkhaug, CEO of Petrodata, Ed Petrozelli, CEO of IBM Worldwide Petroleum, State Secretary in the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy Gunnar Myrvang (Labour Party) and Head of the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate Fredrik Hagemann.



15 March 1995 marks the official opening of the new oil database, Diskos, at the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate in Stavanger. Newspaper Stavanger Aftenblad writes “1000 geologists save 200 million” and goes on to say that 12 oil companies have merged their databases so it is easier for everyone to store and find information. Where geologists previously had to spend days and weeks to locate information, it now only takes a few minutes, according to the coverage.

IBM created the programs and operates the database. The head of the company’s international oil data activities, Ed Petrozelli, tells the paper that the problems they have solved here are common for the entire international oil industry, and he envisages a significant major market for the newly developed technology.

State Secretary Gunnar Myrvang (Labour Party) in the former Ministry of Trade and Energy opened the Diskos database and said that it was a good fit with the Government’s ambitions to reinforce the competitiveness of the Norwegian Shelf and that it represented cutting-edge data technology. The only one who was not entirely satisfied, according to the paper, was Saga’s exploration manager Hans Christen Rønnevik. Since the company was located in what he called the “Oil Shadow” (Oslo), he expected that it would take just as long to get the information up on a screen there, as if it was sent by plane. They could avoid this if they were allowed to use NSB’s data link along the Sørlandsbanen (Southern Rail Line) at a competitive price.

See separate article: From Diskos and Edvard Grieg to Johan Sverdrup >>

In addition to the NPD, Statoil, Hydro, Saga Petroleum and Mobil, the companies Agip, Enterprise, Amoco, BP, Shell, Conoco and Phillips also participate in the Diskos collaboration. All of the oil companies are invited to join the collaboration, where expenses are split equally.

Newspaper Finansavisen writes that Diskos will be the world’s largest civilian database, containing 300-400 terabytes of seismic data from the Norwegian Shelf. IBM’s head of petroleum in Europe, Gordon Phillips, says they are convinced that the PetroBank software will become a huge export success.

Press coverage of Diskos