I am chief scientist of the drilling and well modelling research group in NORCE Energy.
I first obtained a master’s degree in civil engineering. Then I took a master’s degree in software engineering and lately, I have defended a Dr. Philos. thesis in Petroleum engineering. During my whole carrier, I have utilized these different competences to develop technical software solutions for the drilling industry.
Prior to working in a research organization, I have worked 17 years in the industry in various research and development positions, starting as an engineer and finishing as a product development manager. During my industrial carrier, I have worked with various domains such as road construction, directional drilling, multi-disciplinary well design (embracing aspects from geophysics, geology, reservoir and drilling engineering) and well correlation for geological stratigraphic modelling. For these developments, I have used techniques from Artificial Intelligence, relational database, mathematical modelling, 3D interactive graphics.
My strongest interests being within research and science, I joined Rogaland Research (now NORCE) in 2004. There, my main focus has been on real-time drilling aspects. First, I have worked on the automation of the drilling process and then I have started a project on the real-time automatic detection of the deterioration of drilling conditions from weak signals. These two research projects have been industrialized by a spin-off company, Sekal AS established in 2011, now part of the Sumitomo Corporation, as respectively DrillTronics™ and DrillScene™ and have assisted drilling operations, worldwide, to drill more than 200 wells. In 2012 I was awarded Statoil’s research prize for my work with automated drilling.
My research activities, as a project leader for the Drilling Process Optimization project of the DrillWell center for research-based innovation (SFI), have led me to develop new mathematical models, amongst others, of the transient transport of cuttings, transient hydro-mechanical behavior of drill-strings, transient flow of fluid in mud treatment equipment, thixotropic behavior of drilling fluids, real-time reconstruction of the 6-degree of freedom movement of drill-pipes. I have also been granted 5 patents and 2 new patent applications are being worked out.
I also work actively on the next challenge in drilling automation, namely autonomous drilling. Uncertainty estimation and propagation of estimations made with calibrated drilling models is at the core of a method to predict risk levels to reach the end of a section based on current observations. Then, optimization techniques are used to balance performance and risk in order to reach the end of the section in the shortest time possible, without human interventions. This work is done in a Demo 2000 project: Demonstration of Automated Drilling Process Control, supported by AkerBP, Equinor, Norwegian Research Council, Repsol, TOTAL, Vår Energy.
Another challenge in drilling automation, is the seamless interoperability of various drilling software solutions. I work on developing a method to describe the semantic of real-time drilling signals. This effort has resulted in a Demo 2000 project: Drilling Data Hub supported by AkerBP, Equinor, Halliburton, Norwegian Research Council, TOTAL, Vår Energy. Associated with this activity, I participate actively with the standardization of interoperability solutions for drilling systems through the D-WIS (Drilling and Wells Interoperability Standards) subcommittee of the drilling system automation technical committee of SPE (DSATS).