This 5-day course examines engineering challenges and the wider economic impacts (past and present) of oil and gas exploration, drilling and production. Includes a petroleum lab visit, worked examples and plenty of discussion in which participation is encouraged.

Materials provided

  • Delegates will receive written course notes along with a copy of the power point presentation.
  • Heriot-Watt University Certificate of Attendance will be issued to each delegate upon successful completion of the course.

Target audience

The course is intended primarily for those with non-petroleum engineering degree but would serve as a useful refresher to oil industry professionals.

Course requirement

A degree in science or mechanical, chemical or civil engineering is desirable.


  • Global energy (including petroleum) demand and supply.
  • Petroleum geology: process of formation and migration of petroleum; suitable geological structure, type and mineralogy of hydrocarbon reservoir rocks.
  • Petroleum geophysics: the application of earth's gravitational, magnetic and sound velocity properties in hydrocarbon exploration; 2D, 3D and 4D seismic surveys and their applications explained.
  • Formation pressure as the primary energy source of hydrocarbon production
  • Production mechanisms: primary, secondary, tertiary; enhanced oil recovery and improved oil recovery.
  • Drilling operations: techniques; offshore drilling and directional drilling; rig components (including drilling mud).
  • Well logging: application and interpretation of the earth's response to natural and forced electric and nuclear sources.
  • Petroleum reserves estimation.
  • Well completion techniques: casing, cementing, downhole and surface components; perforation and multiple zone completion.
  • Introduction to field development concepts: surface facilities required for the production of hydrocarbon reservoirs, factors affecting design and operation of the production facilities, field development examples.
  • Fluid flow in wells: inflow and outflow performance, single- and multi-phase flow regimes, principles of system analysis, well production problems and solutions.
  • Operation considerations when retrieving underground physical rock samples and information that can be obtained.
  • Reservoir rock properties: porosity, mobility, permeability, relative permeability, capillary pressure; methods of determination.
  • Phase behavior, reservoir fluid properties and methods of determination.
  • Gas reservoirs: thermodynamic equation of states (including ideal/real gas laws); non-linear (laminar) and non-linear (inertia, turbulent, flow behaviour).
  • Material balance: initial hydrocarbon in place, future reservoir performance, ultimate recovery calculations.
  • Fluid flow through porous media: mathematical and numerical modeling approaches; classification.
  • Transient pressure response evaluation by Well testing techniques: information obtained, basic assumptions, equations, well productivity and skin calculations.
  • History of the industry (economic growth, market control questions), current structure (private actors, public sectors, business models), industry trends (unconventional and IOR), wider issues and "above-ground" risk (resource ownership, future energy needs and alternative energy carriers, climate change).


The course is presented by Professor M. Jamiolahmady, Erkal Ersoy and Dr Khafiz Muradov.


If you are interested in attending this course please email the CPD Manager at

Course feedback

In May and November 2014 deliveries the delegates rated the instructors' delivery method including ability to engage and answer questions, 4.67 and 4.30 out of 5, which is equivalent to 93% and 86% satisfaction rates, respectively. The ratings for quality of course materials were 4.17 (83%) and 4.22 (84%), respectively. These are average values of responses of all participants to the three questions in each of these two sections. There ratings were with even distribution as noted in the charts below. The overall ratings of two deliveries were 4.67 (93%) and 4.33 (87%).

Delegates answer to the question: What did you like most?

"It provided a very interesting overall understanding of petroleum activities but with enough depth to be challenging."

"Instructor was interesting, enthusiastic and engaging. Good at answering questions and supplying broader knowledge"

"Freedom of discussion within the lectures"

"question and answer discussions" "broad nature of it"

"Class activities were very useful."

Additional comments

"The lecturer was very helpful and described the course materials that were new to me very well."

"A great Introduction to Petroleum Engineering and how the industry works"

"The level of course is perfect, it is interesting because it is challenging."

"Good scope of material, reservoir engineering interesting and well covered"

"gaining a better understanding of oil reservoirs"

"Good level of reservoir behaviour"

"Good introduction to Petroleum Engineering."

"Everything was great."

"The course was very relevant and interesting."

"It covered a good range of topic."

"It broaden your horizon about oil and gas industry."

"The compact group size provided a more in-depth understanding of certain topics."

Chart 1: Course Instructor Quality
Chart 2: Course Material Quality