Eivind Berg

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Eivind Berg, James Martin and Bjørnar Svenning are being honored with the Kauffman Gold Medal for demonstrating that high-quality, high-density marine shear-wave data can be acquired by recording converted waves at the seabed. The three Statoil employees presented this work at the 1994 EAEG (now EAGE) Annual Meeting and sparked an explosion of activity and advancement in marine converted-wave seismic technology.

Biography Citation for the Virgil Kauffman Gold Medal Award

Contributed by Martin Landrø

Eleven years ago Eivind Berg had this wild idea of acquiring shearand pressure-wave seismic data on the seabed. Onshore shear-wave exploration and its potential were well known, but Eivind believed that shear-wave data acquired on the seabed would be better than their onshore counterparts.

Furthermore, he foresaw the contribution that such data could make; geoscientists could characterize offshore sequences of sedimentary rocks and contained fluids with greater reliability. With infectious enthusiasm and vision, Eivind persuaded Statoil to invest a substantial sum in this project; in retrospect, four-component seabed seismic would be way behind its current level without this enlightened management decision.

The first successful test of a prototype four-component tool came in 1991. The next step was an offshore test. After several sleepless nights, Eivind decided that Tommeliten Field would be suitable—a choice that was immensely important. Resolution of 3-D surface seismic at Tommeliten was strongly obscured by gas chimneys. On the day before Christmas Eve 1993, Statoil’s research team produced the first section of P-to-Sconverted data obtained from the horizontal in-line component. The result was clear: a high-quality seismic image. From that moment, Eivind and colleagues were convinced that this technology would significantly impact the offshore seismic industry. Amoco performed a similar test on Valhall Field in 1996; again, geology obscured by the gas chimney was resolved.

In 1979 Eivind received his Siv.ing. (master’s) degree from the Department of Petroleum Technology and Applied Geophysics at NTNU, Trondheim. He spent three years in Stavanger as a geophysicist for Elf, then returned to Trondheim to embark on a research career with the SINTEF Group. During his SINTEF years, Eivind was devoted to multidisciplinary reservoir description. He and Antony Treverton Buller initiated projects involving integration of geoscientific and computer science disciplines. One result was a high-resolution poststack inversion method (HIGHRES). In 1988 Eivind joined Statoil’s Research Centre in Trondheim.