Geoscience Grad Students Present Research

Annual Meeting Offers Chance to Showcase Work to Industry Sponsors

March 11, 2009

The 2009 UT Dallas Geophysical Consortium brought graduate students and industry sponsors together recently for two days of research presentations on cutting-edge work under way at the Center for Lithospheric Studies.

George McMechan, Ida M. Green Professor in the School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, is the director of the Geophysical Consortium and director of the Center for Lithospheric Studies.

“The Consortium is in its 23rd year,” McMechan said. “It’s a well-established scientific format that supports students in performing geosciences research and allows them to present those findings to industry leaders — a boost to a budding scientist’s work and their professional obligation to present that work. The companies that sponsor the research benefit from our hard-working students, who develop new techniques for analysis of huge volumes of data and return important scientific results that companies can use to make business decisions.”

Two dozen industry leaders from 12 companies came to UT Dallas to hear the latest presentations, including one by geosciences doctoral candidate Ernesto Oropeza.

“My research project is titled ‘Anisotropic Migration Velocity Analysis,’” Oropeza said. “The goal is to improve the accuracy of subsurface images that could help in the exploration for hydrocarbons.”

Oropeza’s presentation was one of more than 20 given by graduate students on topics ranging from 3-D seismology to exploring for underground oil fields from the Gulf Coast to Utah and around the world.

“Industry sponsorship is very important for scientific advances,” Oropeza said. “They help provide us what we need to produce high-quality research that is also an asset for their company. Presenting my work to them gives me the opportunity to share the advancements of my research and what is on the way. The feedback I receive from these presentations makes my research more complete, because I can incorporate some ideas and correct some others.”

Media Contacts: Brandon V. Webb, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, Brandon.webb@utdallas.edu
or the Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, newscenter@utdallas.edu

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Geosciences Ph.D. candidate Ernesto Oropeza (left) and  Dr. George McMechan

Geosciences Ph.D. candidate Ernesto Oropeza (left) presented a project designed to improve the accuracy of images used to find sources of hydrocarbons. Professor George McMechan (right) is the director of the UT Dallas Geophysical Consortium.

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