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Petex software gift boosts geology and engineering programs at WVU

Future geologists and engineers studying at West Virginia University are using the same advanced software as oil and natural gas professionals thanks to an in-kind gift from Petroleum Experts Limited worth nearly $6.4 million.

Petroleum Experts, also known as Petex, is a petroleum engineering and structural geology company that offers a wide range of industry software tools. The company’s latest in-kind software gift benefits students in the geology program at the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences and the petroleum and natural gas engineering program at the  Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources.

The renewal offers students and faculty access to Petex’s Integrated Production Modelling software suite, which models a complete oil or gas production system including the reservoir, wells and surface network. The IPM suite comprises eight software tools such as MOVE, a structural modeling and analysis toolkit that helps to reduce risk and uncertainty in geological models.

Screenshot of Petex Software that shows a model of an ocean, reservoir rock, a well, and process facilities.
Petex’s integrated production modeling software suite provides real-life training to students through visuals as seen in this oil and gas field model. Source: Petex

Brent McCusker, professor of geography and chair of the Eberly College  Department of Geology and Geography, said the Petex software is an asset for teaching and research activities. The software is used in four undergraduate- and graduate-level courses focused on structural geology for energy extraction, geomechanics for petroleum and geothermal systems, 3D subsurface methods, and reservoir brittleness for energy storage.

In addition, the Petex software is used by faculty for research related to conventional and unconventional resource production and geohazard risk assessment.

“Students and faculty also make extended use of Petex software for interdisciplinary educational and collaborative research between geology and  petroleum and natural gas engineering to better achieve WVU goals of program learning outcomes,” McCusker said. “Continued efforts in these areas remain crucial in increasing our student credit hour production and research impact in the areas of energy and sustainability.”

Samuel Ameri, professor and chair of petroleum and natural gas engineering program, said donations such as the Petex gift are critical components in the education and preparation of future engineers at WVU. Hundreds of undergraduate students, graduate students and faculty benefit from access to the software, which aids in research focused on reservoir engineering, reservoir simulation petroleum geology/well log interpretation, stimulation design and horizontal drilling.

Ameri noted that faculty and staff work hard to build mutually beneficial relationships with Petroleum Experts and other companies, and they are always grateful when industry partners see fit to donate time, talent, funds or resources.

“Access to the latest software used in the petroleum and natural gas industries is critical to our students’ education,” Ameri said. “We are so thankful and hope our relationship with Petroleum Experts continues to blossom.”

Founded in the United Kingdom in 1990, Petex is a market leader in petroleum engineering and structural geology software tools, enabling the oil and gas industry to dynamically model oil reservoirs, production and injection wells, and surface pipeline networks as an integrated production system. The company boasts over 420 clients worldwide and supports many universities by providing access to its IPM suite. Petex’s first software gift to WVU was in 2018.

Petex’s software gift was made through the  WVU Foundation, the nonprofit organization that receives and administers private donations on behalf of the University.