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A day in the life of…
Reservoir Engineer at Santos
Alarm goes off. I make myself a coffee, have breakfast and get into my cycling gear.
I leave my house and cycle to work.
I arrive at work. Santos has a cycle shed where you can securely store your bike, so I don’t need to worry about bringing a bike lock each day. I have a shower, get changed, and head upstairs to my desk.
I settle in for the morning. Check my work emails and my to-do list for what tasks I should aim to complete today.
This particular week the engineer who collates daily data for internal reporting is away. I check the daily reports for the PNG LNG facility and record them in a spreadsheet. Once a week I either the engineer or myself will email the weekly production summary internally to the department, so the team knows how production is tracking. Occasionally I will notice things that are unusual, maybe a particular field is producing less than normal. I’ll do some detective work and if required, contact our Joint Venture Partners, to come to an answer for any production disruption.
This particular month a devastating earthquake occurred in PNG which has resulted in loss in life and damage to the infrastructure in the country. Due to this event, the LNG facility has been shut in, and daily we check in to see whether there have been any more after shocks or damage. Santos is providing financial aid to the affected areas and helping in any way possible. This is just an example of our social license to operate in PNG.
Time for our fortnightly team meeting. We take in turns to cater and start the meeting with a safety or “resilience” moment. While we are munching away at one of the many delicious cakes, sausage rolls, fruit, vietnamese sticky rice cake or tequeños, we discuss how our work is progressing, and any team challenges we are facing. We each talk for a few minutes about what we are working on, and offer any advice to each other on how to tackle any technical issues we are having. We finish up our meeting by showing any recent holiday photos.
Time for another coffee…
I often have different tasks to complete during the day, and need to be able to effectively time manage multiple deadlines. This morning I am doing some of analytical work to understand the reservoir performance for one of the fields in PNG LNG project. I am investigating the production performance over time, looking at factors such as how quick the production declines, and how quickly gas or water are produced into the well over many years of production. After understanding the production behaviour, I do some forecasting to estimate the remaining potential for the field by applying some techniques such as decline curve analysis and material balance. If anything doesn’t make sense, I’ll call upon the senior engineers in my team to help me understand the problems and check if the results make sense and are realistic. As a graduate you are encouraged to ask questions, and we are fortunate to receive mentorship and support.
I am going to the gym today, so I’ll quickly eat my lunch at the tea point with my other colleagues, then get back to work.
I head down to the Santos gym. The gym is open Monday-Friday from 6:00am to 6:00pm for any employee at Santos. The gym has all the usual equipment (weights, treadmills, bikes), but I like going for the group classes. These classes run 45 minutes, the perfect amount of time to fit into your lunch break!
I’m back at my desk for the afternoon. This afternoon I’m moving onto another task- predicting the long term production at the LNG facility based on all the different fields that feed into the plant. I have to collect a range of inputs for the simulation, including the ultimate recovery (the total amount of gas we think the fields will produce), what time the fields will come online (some are still in development), what fuel and flare usage we think we will use, and how much of our final products we are expecting (LNG, naphtha, and condensate). To do this work I need to work with multiple different people to get the required inputs. The software we are using is still in the development stage, so I will frequently contact the company directly and give them feedback on how the software is working.
Time to head off to our graduate social event! As a graduate ambassador I work with a small group of graduates to organise frequent social events. Tonight we are heading off to a “bbq buoy” on the Torrens River!