USA: FEI and University of Oklahoma (OU) have commenced a research collaboration agreement to establish an oil and gas center of excellence, the "FEI-OU Pore Scale Characterization Laboratory," at the OU Mewborne School of Petroleum and Geological Engineering (MPGE).
The research will focus on the development of routine quantitative methods to classify shales in the economic assessment of tight oil and gas plays. Through the collaboration FEI seeks to further develop its position as the leading supplier of high-resolution imaging solutions to the oil and gas industry by better defining and expanding its role in the characterization of unconventional reservoirs.
The collaboration agreement includes FEI's Helios NanoLab 650 DualBeam and QEMSCAN automated mineralogy tool. The DualBeam uses a scanning electron microscope (SEM), to provide high-resolution
imaging, and a focused ion beam (FIB), to remove thin slices of the sample, allowing the reconstruction of a high-resolution 3D model of the pore network.
The QEMSCAN combines SEM and X-ray spectrometry to automatically analyze mineral content, lithology (rock type), and various other petrographic characteristics.