AAPG's Imperial Barrel Award (IBA) Program is an annual prospective basin evaluation contest for geoscience students from universities around the globe. The participants analyze geological, geophysical, land, economic and production data in a real world scenario. The IBA regional and section competition winners qualify to compete against each other in the international finals during the Annual Convention & Exhibition (ACE), taking place in the USA, for a chance to win scholarship funds for their school.
This year, the Middle East Region held the 6th Imperial Barrel Award Competition in Muscat, Oman together with the Young Professionals and Student Summit. Three teams representing King Fahad University of Petroleum and Minerals (Dhahran, Saudi Arabia); Sultan Qaboos University (Muscat, Oman) and United Arab Emirates University (Al Ain, UAE) were presented with the same dataset eight weeks out from the competition date. The students then had two months, working together as a team and under the guidance of their academic advisor, to discuss and analyze the dataset and prepare their conclusions.
"Participating in the IBA 2015 was one of the most unforgettable experiences. It involved two full months of hard work that helped to refine our time management, problem solving and interpersonal skills. I really learned a lot from my colleagues in different disciplines; by exploring HC in an offshore field using different modern softwares."
Sultan Qaboos University, Muscat, Oman
On the morning of the 16th March, the three university teams gathered at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Muscat to present their findings to a panel of 3 industry experts. Each team had a total of 25 minutes to present their work and how they reached their conclusions, this was then followed by a 10 minute question and answer session with the judges. After the three teams had presented it took the judges over an hour of deliberating to agree on who should be presented with the winner’s trophy and go on to represent the region in the international finals.
King Fahad University of Petroleum and Minerals team were announced as the winner of the 2015 Middle East Region IBA Competition that evening at the award ceremony and dinner, and the Sultan Qaboos University and United Arab Emirates University were both awarded as runners up. The ceremony took place in the gardens of the Crowne Plaza Hotel and was attended by industry professionals from across the GCC, representatives from regional geological societies, AAPG Middle East Regional Council Members and the Young Professional and Student Summit attendees.
King Fahad University of Petroleum and Minerals, the winning team of the 6th Imperial Barrel Award Competition, Middle East
"I was fortunate to mentor a group of four talented and smart students who were willingly able to work days and nights under pressure and on a tight schedule. Such effective team work allowed the KFUPM students to complete the IBA project on time and win the Middle East 2015 contest. I and my students are excited to compete with the winners from the region of Europe, America, Asia and Africa in Colorado, USA.
“The ability to make a decision based on a challenging dataset and convince the panel of experts on the petroleum prospectivity of the study area is absolutely a remarkable achievement. The immense level of experience and skills that IBA offers in the field of petroleum geology to students can't be taught in textbooks or lectures."
Dr. Khalid Ramadan,
King Fahad University of Petroleum and Minerals
The 7th Imperial Barrel Award Competition will take place in Manama, Bahrain in March 2016. If you wish to participate, please .
Learn more about the AAPG student chapters in the region.
Follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter to be the first to learn about the AAPG Middle East updates. For all other inquiries, do not hesitate to .