April 4, 2012

LSU Engineering Opens State-of-the-Art Chevron Lab for Visualization

Student demonstrations and video featured “Simulated Flow Through Porous Media,” visit http://bit.ly/HaTu3l

Visualization is essential for engineers and scientists to study subsurface structures that contain oil & gas, geothermal energy, or that can be used for CO2 storage. LSU’s College of Engineering recently held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the grand opening of the new Chevron Reservoir Characterization Lab in Patrick F. Taylor Hall, where students demonstrated the new technology for oil and gas research.

This facility, for interdisciplinary research and teaching contains state-of-the-art computers and software for visualization, with an emphasis on advancing the art and practice of oil and gas reservoir modeling. Funds for the renovation were donated to the project by Chevron Corporation through the LSU Foundation.

"Chevron is proud to continue its support of LSU through our University Partnership Program," said Bill Hunter, portfolio manager, University Affairs, Chevron. “Our partnership with LSU is a strategic part of Chevron's efforts to hire top quality students necessary to help us meet energy demands around the world. We believe that the new Chevron Reservoir Characterization Lab will help train LSU students in Petroleum Engineering and other disciplines and be a great tool to help achieve academic excellence."

From a student perspective, where an array of disciplines will have the chance to work with advanced technology, learning will shift from observation to exploration: prepared charts and pictures will be replaced by the ability for students to drive the software packages themselves and delve into any parts of the data they find interesting. Similarly, the lab gives research groups an opportunity to engage in collaborative exploration of data and results.

“During my first summer of work for Chevron, I began to realize that Chevron’s interest in the training and development of students, no matter what year in college, extends far past LSU to colleges worldwide,” said Jaime Glas, senior, Petroleum Engineering, International Trade and Finance. “After three years of work for this notable company, it has been my experience that Chevron truly understands what we as students value in terms of a solid technical foundation coupled with real-life industry exposure. The Chevron Reservoir Characterization Laboratory is a perfect example of marrying these fundamental ideals.”

While the lab program will be based in the Craft & Hawkins Department of Petroleum Engineering, Chevron's gift to LSU is a continuation of its relationship with the University and part of the Company's University Partnership Program, affecting multiple programs at LSU.

“Chevron’s long association with LSU's College of Engineering has produced successful outcomes for our students, faculty research and industry endeavors,” stated Rick Koubek, dean, LSU College of Engineering. "Chevron's contribution to this new lab, and other programs, exhibits the inspiration of the College's strategic partnership with industry to transform lives through exploration. We are grateful for the generosity and support from an energy leader, such as Chevron."

Petroleum engineering majors are not the only students who will benefit from the state-of-the-art lab. It will also benefit students in the areas of geology and geophysics.

“Chevron’s investment ensures that there will be scientists and engineers who are well prepared to develop the innovations and technology that will address our future energy needs,” said Kevin Carman, dean, LSU College of Science.

To view the student produced video featuring the “Simulated Flow Through Porous Media,” which also be submitted at the RedStick Animation Festival, visit http://bit.ly/HaTu3l

To learn more about LSU’s College of Engineering, visit www.eng.lsu.edu.

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Article by Mimi LaValle, Director of Communications, LSU College of Engineering, 225-578-5706, mlavall@lsu.edu


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