NICTA validates hot rock algorithms in oil country

 

Victorian region selected as test site.

NICTA has identified an oil-rich region in southwestern Victoria to validate machine-learning algorithms created under a $5 million big data project.

The project, revealed by iTnews last November, aims to help geothermal exploration firms identify the characteristics of subsurface fields without having to drill them.

It was initiated by the Australian Centre for Renewable Energy and involves university researchers in four states and private sector geothermal explorers GeoDynamics and Petratherm.

Researchers plan to create algorithms that extract knowledge from the petabytes of publicly held gravity, seismic and magnetotellurics datasets maintained by the likes of Geoscience Australia, as well as datasets from private sector partners.

Combining the datasets will allow researchers to infer characteristics about Australia's subsurface environment.

Researchers will validate the algorithms by using them to generate inferences about the subsurface properties of a "region between Melbourne and the South Australian border" that has already been extensively drilled for oil. 

"As a consequence there is a relatively good understanding of what that geology looks like at depth," NICTA CEO and project lead Hugh Durrant-Whyte said.

If the inferences generated using the algorithm are accurate compared to actual data generated by drilling activity, it will pave the way for the algorithms to be used "in the areas that we're actually interested in in Australia" - those capable of being tapped as geothermal energy sources.

The initial project could also lead to bigger things.

"In truth the end game of this project - I know this sounds a bit grand - [is] basically to combine all data that exists about Australia and do an entire map of the whole continent at scale and at depth," Durrant-Whyte said.

"This is huge data. This is many petabytes."

Validation, not speed

Durrant-Whyte said that the geothermal project is focused on "getting a result, rather than getting a result quickly and routinely".

As a result, researchers are more concerned with proving the efficacy of the algorithms than finding a way to compute results faster using them.

"The core computations involved in this are essentially fairly sophisticated linear algebra at massive scale," Durrant-Whyte said.

"Although it's not a core part of the project ... [we are thinking about how] we might distribute that on, for example, GPUs or in cloud based systems or any of these other technologies.

"[But] the hard problems are, can we get a good result and are these algorithms actually going to work and generate a useful result? That's the most important thing to verify.

"Can we distribute it on a large cloud network or on GPUs and get it done in 10 seconds rather than 10 days? That's interesting but it's not the key challenge."

Strategic variance

The geothermal project varies from other big data projects in the resources sector because it is not principally reliant on sensor data from remote sites (such as drill rigs).

iTnews reported yesterday a series of projects as part of a new movement aiming to harness burgeoning data volumes generated in real time by equipment at remote mine sites across Australia.

Geothermal energy is valued because it is "abundant, renewable and has zero carbon output", according to NICTA.

Copyright © iTnews.com.au . All rights reserved.


NICTA validates hot rock algorithms in oil country
 
 
 
Top Stories
Frugality as a service: the Amazon story
Behind the scenes, Amazon Web Services is one lean machine.
 
Negotiating with the cloud email megavendors
[Blog post] Lessons from Woolworths’ mammoth migration.
 
Qld govt to move up to 149k staff onto Office 365
Australia's largest deployment, outside of the universities.
 
 
Sign up to receive iTnews email bulletins
   FOLLOW US...

Latest VideosSee all videos »

The great data centre opportunity on Australia's doorstep
The great data centre opportunity on Australia's doorstep
Scott Noteboom, CEO of LitBit speaking at The Australian Data Centre Strategy Summit 2014 in the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia. http://bit.ly/1qpxVfV Scott Noteboom is a data centre engineer who led builds for Apple and Yahoo in the earliest days of the cloud, and who now eyes Asia as the next big opportunity. Read more: http://www.itnews.com.au/News/372482,how-do-we-serve-three-billion-new-internet-users.aspx#ixzz2yNLmMG5C
Interview: Karl Maftoum, CIO, ACMA
Interview: Karl Maftoum, CIO, ACMA
To COTS or not to COTS? iTnews asks Karl Maftoum, CIO of the ACMA, at the CIO Strategy Summit.
Susan Sly: What is the Role of the CIO?
Susan Sly: What is the Role of the CIO?
AEMO chief information officer Susan Sly calls for more collaboration among Australia's technology leaders at the CIO Strategy Summit.
Meet the 2014 Finance CIO of the Year
Meet the 2014 Finance CIO of the Year
Credit Union Australia's David Gee awarded Finance CIO of the Year at the iTnews Benchmark Awards.
Meet the 2014 Retail CIO of the Year
Meet the 2014 Retail CIO of the Year
Damon Rees named Retail CIO of the Year at the iTnews Benchmark Awards for his work at Woolworths.
Robyn Elliott named the 2014 Utilities CIO of the Year
Robyn Elliott named the 2014 Utilities CIO of the Year
Acting Foxtel CIO David Marks accepts an iTnews Benchmark Award on behalf of Robyn Elliott.
Meet the 2014 Industrial CIO of the Year
Meet the 2014 Industrial CIO of the Year
Sanjay Mehta named Industrial CIO of the Year at the iTnews Benchmark Awards for his work at ConocoPhillips.
Meet the 2014 Healthcare CIO of the Year
Meet the 2014 Healthcare CIO of the Year
Greg Wells named Healthcare CIO of the Year at the iTnews Benchmark Awards for his work at NSW Health.
Meet the 2014 Education CIO of the Year
Meet the 2014 Education CIO of the Year
William Confalonieri named Healthcare CIO of the Year at the iTnews Benchmark Awards for his work at Deakin University.
Meet the 2014 Government CIO of the Year
Meet the 2014 Government CIO of the Year
David Johnson named Government CIO of the Year at the iTnews Benchmark Awards for his work at the Queensland Police Service.
Q and A: Coalition Broadband Policy
Q and A: Coalition Broadband Policy
Malcolm Turnbull and Tony Abbott discuss the Coalition's broadband policy with the press.
AFP scalps hacker 'leader' inside Australia's IT ranks.
AFP scalps hacker 'leader' inside Australia's IT ranks.
The Australian Federal Police have arrested a Sydney-based IT security professional for hacking a government website.
NBN Petition Delivered To Turnbull's Office
NBN Petition Delivered To Turnbull's Office
UTS CIO: IT teams of the future
UTS CIO: IT teams of the future
UTS CIO Chrissy Burns talks data.
New UTS Building: the IT within
New UTS Building: the IT within
The IT behind tomorrow's universities.
iTnews' NBN Panel
iTnews' NBN Panel
Is your enterprise NBN-ready?
Introducing iTnews Labs
Introducing iTnews Labs
See a timelapse of the iTnews labs being unboxed, set up and switched on! iTnews will produce independent testing of the latest enterprise software to hit the market after installing a purpose-built test lab in Sydney. Watch the installation of two DL380p servers, two HP StoreVirtual 4330 storage arrays and two HP ProCurve 2920 switches.
The True Cost of BYOD
The True Cost of BYOD
iTnews' Brett Winterford gives attendees of the first 'Touch Tomorrow' event in Brisbane a brief look at his research into enterprise mobility. What are the use cases and how can they be quantified? What price should you expect to pay for securing mobile access to corporate applications? What's coming around the corner?
Ghost clouds
Ghost clouds
ACMA chair Chris Chapman says there is uncertainty over whether certain classes of cloud service providers are caught by regulations.
Was the Snowden leak inevitable?
Was the Snowden leak inevitable?
Privacy experts David Vaile (UNSW Cyberspace Law and Policy Centre) and Craig Scroggie (CEO, NextDC) claim they were not surprised by the Snowden leaks about the NSA's PRISM program.
Latest Comments
Polls
Which bank is most likely to suffer an RBS-style meltdown?





   |   View results
ANZ
  20%
 
Bankwest
  9%
 
CommBank
  11%
 
National Australia Bank
  17%
 
Suncorp
  24%
 
Westpac
  19%
TOTAL VOTES: 1440

Vote