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REF NO.: 176

SUBJECT: Transforming gift allows Memorial University to revolutionize oil and gas exploration

DATE: March 12

Landmark Graphics Corporation has donated $18.4 million ($13.9 million US) in specialized software to Memorial University which will revolutionize how offshore oil and gas reservoirs are viewed and developed. This exceptional donation will create a specialized facility that is unique in North America, enhancing the university's ability to provide education, research and training in oil and gas, and supporting the ongoing development of the oil and gas sector in the province.

This gift is the second major contribution to Memorial by the software industry leader, based in Houston, Texas. Landmark's first software grant in 2000 resulted in Memorial leveraging $2 million from the Canada Foundation for Innovation and the Atlantic Innovation Fund. That investment will be used to create a three-dimensional visualization centre known as the Decision Centre, an immersive, active-stereo simulation environment which uses Landmark software to look at seismic, geological and drilling data.

With this most recent Landmark grant, Memorial can now equip the facility with software that will act as an ultrasound for oil and gas reservoirs, allowing researchers to view three dimensional imagery generated from data collected on Newfoundland's offshore. The software helps create a tool that develops virtual reality based on data while allowing manipulation of the images to reflect various production factors. The three-dimensional visual created by the software will help researchers get a better understanding of the nature of offshore reservoirs and more accurately predict ways to improve drilling programs and reservoir management, enhancing efficient and safe offshore development.

Memorial will be one of the few universities worldwide to have this ability and the only university in Canada to offer this training environment for students. The Landmark donation brings Memorial one giant step forward in its ongoing initiative to become a world leader in oil and gas research and teaching.

"Landmark is committed to the growth and development of students who will be entering the exploration and production industry by providing students and researchers access to industry-leading technology," said Andy Lane, president, Landmark. "Canada's East Coast offshore produces 20 percent of Canada's light crude output; the many unexplored basins represent enormous opportunity, as well as some of the most challenging exploration and drilling environments in the world. Landmark's donation to Memorial University will improve research into the methods of exploring and producing in these environments with the promise of increasing viability of these new basins."

Dr. Axel Meisen, president and vice-chancellor of Memorial University, welcomed the Landmark investment. He said the benefits of such a donation are innumerable. "This grant will enable our teachers and researchers to use the latest in reservoir management technology," he said. "Exposure to this kind of leading edge technology will result in highly-qualified graduates who will have experience using the Landmark suites in studies of the reservoirs in the east coast petroleum systems. They will join the workforce with a valuable set of skills and experience. No other university in Canada can offer this training environment."

Under Landmark Graphics' Strategic University Grant program, students and researchers in the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science and the Department of Earth Sciences will benefit most from the software. "It's similar to a movie theatre that's interactive, so instead of just watching a movie, you're watching the data and you can change the data as you're watching, determining what would happen if different drilling techniques were used. That's the power of the software," said Dr. Jim Wright, head of the Department of Earth Sciences at Memorial. "We are especially excited about the potential using Landmark's new productivity tools, ProMAX 4D and Geoprobe, for studying the Hibernia and White Rose fields."

"This contribution from Landmark provides significant support to our undergraduate oil and gas engineering program options and adds tremendously to the simulation-based research that's already happening here," said Dr. Ray Gosine, dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science. "This partnership allows us to provide our students with technology that's among the best in the world."

Memorial University of Newfoundland

Memorial, through its Oil and Gas Development Partnership which was formed in 2000, is positioning the university and the province of Newfoundland and Labrador as a leading centre of oil and gas expertise, with a special focus on operation in harsh environments. In partnership with private and public organizations in Canada and abroad, Memorial is building upon its internationally acclaimed work in earth sciences, geophysics and ocean engineering to expand its education and research offerings for the petroleum industry. The university has created new programs - such as the executive-level master's program in oil and gas studies - recruited new faculty with diverse industrial and academic experience and secured substantial targeted research funds for this centre of excellence.

The largest university in Atlantic Canada with over 17,000 students, Memorial operates from five locations, including St. Johns, Corner Brook and Happy Valley-Goose Bay in Newfoundland and Labrador, as well as the French island of Saint-Pierre, and Harlow, England. Students experience a wide variety of learning environments that emphasize experiential learning and research with internationally recognized strengths in such diverse areas as marine biology, cold ocean studies, native and northern education, community medicine, folklore, genetics and music.

Landmark Graphics Corporation

Landmark Graphics is the leading supplier of software and services for the upstream oil and gas industry. The company's software solutions span exploration, production, drilling, business decision analysis and data management. Landmark offers a broad range of consulting services that enable customers to optimize their technical, business and decision processes.

Landmark's integrated technology and services offerings are focused on key decision points in the oil and gas lifecycle, facilitating greater teamwork and enabling oil and gas companies around the world to lower their costs and boost productivity and profitability.

A wholly-owned business unit of Halliburton Company since 1996, Houston-based Landmark employs about 2,000 people in more than 50 offices worldwide. Landmark serves customers in over 80 countries, accounting for more than 90 per cent of the industry's exploration and production enterprises.

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