British technology firm S-Cube helps Tullow strike oil in Guyana 


Commenting on the latest achievement, S-Cube co-founder and chief operating officer Dr Nikhil Shah, said: “The XWI algorithm marks the start of the big data parameter learning and HPC convergence using cloud compute infrastructure for the energy industry (Photo: www.londontowngroup.com).
Commenting on the latest achievement, S-Cube co-founder and chief operating officer Dr Nikhil Shah, said: “The XWI algorithm marks the start of the big data parameter learning and HPC convergence using cloud compute infrastructure for the energy industry (Photo: www.londontowngroup.com).

S-CUBE, a technology provider for the energy sector, has helped Tullow Oil with its XWI algorithm to discover oil at its Jethro-1 well in Guyana.

Known for its accuracy and automation, XWI algorithm facilitates a completely data-driven earth model building.

Commenting on the latest achievement, S-Cube co-founder and chief operating officer Dr Nikhil Shah, said: “The XWI algorithm marks the start of the big data parameter learning and HPC convergence using cloud compute infrastructure for the energy industry.

“We will continue to advance our search platform to solve for unknowns that affect the quality and accuracy of the final result maintaining the predictive power of earth rock property trends below 3-kilometre depth.”

The Jethro-1 was drilled by the Stena Forth drillship to a total depth of 4,400 metres in approximately 1,350 metres of water.

Tullow Oil said the evaluation of logging data confirmed that Jethro-1 was the first discovery on the Orinduik licence and comprises oil-bearing sandstone reservoirs of lower tertiary age.


Nikhil Shah is the COO of S-Cube, a technology provider for the oil and gas industry.

British Indian Dr Shah is the son of hotelier Koolesh Shah, the founder of the London Town Group, which owns and operates some of the UK’s leading hotels.

Dr Shah, a University of Cambridge graduate, is one of the pioneers behind S-Cube, a platform he describes as a “technology company spun out from academia by venture capital”.

Using seismic data, Shah’s company creates 3D digital representations of sub-surface structures below the seabed, in what can be considered a geophysics exploration.

End-users include petroleum companies that aim to drill more accurate wells and improve their exploration hit-rate using S-Cube models.

The firm evolved at the earth science and engineering doctorate programme department of Imperial College London, where it became clear that the research, conducted by a university group featuring Dr Shah, could have major commercial applications.