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Lyceum 2021 | Together Towards Tomorrow

Ruden AS has developed an innovative method that uses existing data and technology from the oil industry, combined with applied hydrogeology to search for water in regions of water scarcity.

This is known as the Search Model. Helene will present about a project commissioned by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in which the Search Model has been successfully applied in Tanzania and used to discover freshwater indications in Somalia.



Helene Ree Ruden
CFO & Project Manager, Ruden AS


20 min

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Video Transcript

(relaxed electronic music)

<v ->My name is Helena Ree,</v>

and I work for a company called Ruden AS from Norway.

Thank you so much Seequent and Lyceum for having me here,

I’m very excited to share this exciting project with you

on how we use data and technology

to identify until now hidden,

deep, fresh groundwater resources.

This presentation will take you through

how we work with old and new data to do this work.

The oil industry and hydrogeology have many common features,

but they have been separated for a long time,

and in Ruden we think it’s a shame

not to use this valuable data from the oil industry

for the greater good.

So we combine these two

by taking competence and information from the oil industry

to get a better understanding of the subsurface

and the resources currently present there.

So by recycling technology,

data and competence from the oil industry,

this enables us to look for other resources than oil.

This is a quick overview

of the water scarcity situation in the world today,

and please have a specific look

at the African continent and its neighboring countries

where the vulnerability is higher

and the lack of resilience is greater

than any other place in the world today.

And when we add something called passive margins,

which is large thicknesses of sediments,

where vast amounts of fresh water can be stored.

You can see this applies

to most coastal countries in the world.

And when you look at the water scarcity map in the back

combined with this passive margins,

our attention was specifically brought

to the horn of Africa and East of Africa.

So, with our current access

to some of this geological data

and the combining this

with the desperate need of water in this region,

our attention was brought to this part of the world.

In 2007, our idea was born.

We started looking at seismic lines

from sixties and seventies to conceptually test our idea.

This cross section you see top right

is based on interpretation from seismics,

more than 1000 kilometers of seismic survey data,

borehole logs and completion reports

from previous oil exploration activities in East Africa.

We decided to test this conceptual model

and found funding to execute this project in Tanzania.

In this project we also heavily lean on

competence and technology from the oil sector.

This rig you see in the picture

is taken from an onshore oil exploration field.

We completed borehole geophysical logging,

also a technique taken from the oil sector,

and the result of this specific execution in Tanzania

were also the water was tested and sampled

by the local authorities to make sure the water was fresh.

The result and impact of what was initially an idea,

it’s now a sustainable water capacity

for a population of more than 1.2 million people.

This workflow was set into a system

where we like to call this a search model.

So it’s like a recipe for identifying

deep groundwater based on oil data.

We do literature review, seismic interpretation

and well log interpretation,

and all of these activities form the base

for what we call the search model,

to enable us to identify all this fresh water.

As you can imagine, we in Ruden,

we employ people from both the oil sector

and the more traditional water and hydrogeology sector

to make sure this puzzle is figured out.

We presented our idea of our knowledge

on the current geological settings in Somalia,

it’s quite similar to that in Tanzania,

and we presented the Tanzania project

to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

And we created a project that is today led by Ruden

and it’s funded by

the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs,

and of course the beneficiary of this project

is the Somalia population.

We have a fantastic extended team project and contributors.

We have Petrel from Schlumberger,

we have Leapfrog from Seequent,

we have lots of data from Swalim,

which is Somalian Water and Land Information Management.

We have researchers from Oxford University

and also data and software competence

locally here in Norway from Sintef.

So we are now building a conceptual model of Somalia,

and this is the first time in history

where satellite data and geological data

has been interpreted and integrated

into one big geological model.

And we use the satellite data to understand

the volumes that goes into this aquifer system,

and we use the geological data

to understand more about the behavior of the water

and where is it stored.

So the output of this conceptual model

is this beauty to the right,

which is a geological model

that integrates seismics, wells data, literature,

and part of this integration

is done by Leapfrog from Seequent.

And just to make sure you see the whole picture,

this geological model you see here

is the whole nation of Somalia.

So it’s an enormously big,

enormous model, very high resolution,

and this has to our knowledge never been done before.

And this geological model has already given us,

we have already found indications of freshwater,

we have already proposed eight drilling sites

and 40 information targets.

This is our contribution,

and thanks to software like Leapfrog

we are able to explore where no one has looked before.

Thank you.

(dramatic electronic music)

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