Table 2.

Technological innovations in the upstream oil industry and their impact.

yeartechnologybenefit
1893anticlinal theoryconcept of ‘where to drill’
1900srotary drillingdrill deeper
1914seismographone-dimensional subsurface imaging
1924well loggingsubsurface rock and fluid properties
1930soffshore drillingaccess to new areas and basins
1960sdigital computingtwo-dimensional subsurface imaging and data management
1970sdirectional drillingaccess to areas with surface obstacles
1980sthree-dimensional seismicimaging revolution
1990sthree-dimensional simulationpredicting fluid movement
2000slong horizontal drilling and multi-stage hydraulic fracturing‘shale gale’ (q.v.)
2000snext generation three-dimensional, four-dimensional (time lapse) and micro-seismicfurther subsalt imaging capability, more efficient field development