Matthew Greenberg

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Matthew Greenberg
Matthew L. Greenberg headshot.png
Latest company Hamilton County Public Defender
BSc Physics and Maths
MSc Geophysics
BSc university Macalester College
MSc university Columbia University

Matthew L. Greenberg and John P. Castagna are receiving the Reginald Fessenden Award for their work in shear-wave velocity estimation in porous rocks. AVO modeling and its successful application to exploration programs are directly related to the timely publication of the article “Shear-wave velocity estimation in porous rocks: Theoretical formulation, preliminary verification, and applications” in Geophysical Prospecting. The Greenberg and Castagna technique has withstood 14 years of close scrutiny by being compared to both wireline and laboratory measurements. In fact, it is not uncommon to utilize this shear-wave estimation technique even when in-situ S-wave logs are available. Their peers rank this work with the most important contributions to the field.

Biography Citation for the Reginald Fessenden Award

Contributed by William J. Lamb

Matt Greenberg and I first met when he joined the ARCO research organization in Plano, Texas in 1988. He was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, but grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota. He earned a bachelor’s degree in physics and mathematics from Macalester College in 1979, and went on to earn a master’s from Columbia University in 1987, studying under Roger N. Anderson. He worked for Schlumberger from 1980 to 1985, doing well logging field operations in Michigan, Illinois, and Ohio.

After all that field experience, it was clear that Matt knew his well logs. One time I needed some help with log analysis and went to him for help. He said, “Sure, but I have to finish my current project first.” He was working on a regional geopressure study and had to do a sand/shale analysis for a large number of wells. This would take some time. I was impatient and suggested that he automate the process. He did. Quickly. I got my help in a timely fashion and ARCO got automated sand/shale analysis, which was used in subsequent geopressure work.

Matt was good at taking ideas and implementing them. He worked on quite a variety of things besides the automated sand/shale analysis. These included the application of generalized linear inversion to volumetric log analysis, lithology inversion, and, of course, shear-wave velocity prediction.

It is the shear-wave velocity prediction work for which he and John Castagna are being recognized with the Reginald Fessenden Award. Matt implemented the shear-wave velocity prediction algorithm with his usual artistry. As a practical matter it was unique in that it did not require a priori compaction trends. It was run successfully by ARCO on hundreds of wells, and was widely adopted by the industry after its publication in Geophysical Prospecting in 1992. After about a decade at ARCO, Matt turned to other interests. He left Texas, returned to Ohio, and attended the University of Cincinnati College of Law. His began his law career with the Hamilton County Public Defender Commission, but the pull of his technical interests proved strong, and he is transitioning to patent law.

I congratulate Matt for being honored for his work in geophysics. I’m sure his competence, enthusiasm, and helpfulness will be as evident in his new career as it was in his old one.