Petroleum Engineering Technologist Spotlight

Oil and gas fuel the country, and the oil and gas industry is fueled by data. Handling all that data are Petroleum Engineering Technologists, using geological surveys and production logs to find efficiencies that get the most out of each well.

What a typical day looks like:

Petroleum Engineering Technologists work closely with engineers to control the process start-up and shut-down. From a central control room, they monitor and optimize physical and chemical processes for several processing units. Having constructed subsurface maps and cross-sections from well log data, they’re ready to supervise the geological aspects of wellsite operations.

Throughout a well’s operation, a Petroleum Engineering Technologist calculates its economics, interpreting surface data to evaluate the reservoir’s potential. They perform tests, record data, carry out statistical process control on process operations, and write production logs.

Beyond their daily obsession with data, a Petroleum Engineering Technologist also has to consider the operation’s human element. They prepare drilling and workover programs and supervise drilling and field servicing operations, all in close collaboration with engineers.

The kinds of problems Petroleum Engineering Technologist solve at work:

While sifting through data presents a complex set of challenges, sometimes the problems they deal with extend to the technology itself. Technologists need to shut down, isolate and prepare production equipment for maintenance. At basic oil and gas facilities, they may also need to conduct troubleshooting when unexpected problems occur.

Skills used most on the job:

Petroleum Engineering Technologists need to understand both the geological features of an area and the technologies that let them gather information about those features. They need to be technically sophisticated, rigorous in their reporting, and able to see opportunities for more efficient ways of doing things. Data may fuel their work, but it takes a skilled Engineering Technologist to see where it leads.

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