Guest Column | November 8, 2021

Remote Sensing And GIS For Oil Sector

By Tania Holembovska


Remote sensing and GIS technologies have become widespread in many areas of human activity, and the oil industry is no exception. Why are these technologies used? They provide advanced capabilities for preventing and resolving a variety of manufacturing problems. However, this is not all. In this piece, we propose to consider in more detail several examples of the use of GIS and remote sensing data in the oil sector. On this website, you can find out more information about GIS and remote sensing in other different sectors.

Remote sensing for terrain stability

Satellite Synthesized Aperture Radar (InSAR) can be of great benefit to understanding terrain resilience. It can provide improved surveillance and control of potential geological hazards in the oil and gas industry. It is a great way to enhance the safety and performance of pipelines.

Interferometry provides continuous monitoring of the site from satellites. In addition, terrestrial imagery cannot provide the same large field of view as satellite imagery.

GIS automation in map production and visualization

The use of GIS is necessary to display various objects in source exploration for resources, including gas and oil. In addition, there is no better tool for environmental assessments in directional drilling. In addition, GIS provides automation tools that can significantly improve decision-making and automate workflows. This technology allows you to quickly automate the creation of maps if you need to create them for multiple sites.

Land management

GIS makes territorial planning much more accessible. This tool is capable of analyzing spatial relationship data and allows for a comprehensive assessment of the location. This way, you can make better decisions that are also scientifically sound. This fact plays a vital role in land use.

The GIS also provides leased information, including dates, landlord names, royalty data, and gross and net income percentages of planted areas. Regulatory authorities require reports that can also be generated using GIS tools in their corporate environment. It can be explained by the fact that all land administration data is centralized.

Environmental monitoring

GIS brings many benefits to more efficient use of resources, as it provides an opportunity to assess the impact of human activities on them. The primary way to use GIS in this sector is to solve environmental problems. This technology contributes to improved control and quick response in floods, soil erosion, landslides, droughts, and so on.

GIS is also a reliable tool for tracking environmental changes that are related to production. It is extremely convenient given the increased focus on shale development at the moment. GIS, in this case, provides invaluable opportunities for data integration and visualization. Thanks to this technology, specialists can detect subsidence caused by resource extraction.

Disaster management

Deep ocean drilling, hydro blasting, and other human activities need a tool that will provide the ability to manage natural disasters. In conventional drilling and field operations, maintaining safety is critical, requiring a large amount of data. GIS takes a massive amount of data and provides insight into every need for repair and maintenance. In this way, you can mitigate the impact of natural disasters and minimize the number of resources needed for recovery.

Emergency response

GIS and emergency response include planning, analysis, and action. Emergency services can act more effectively and prevent damage, death, and injury. In addition, with this solution, affected communities can quickly return to their everyday lives and recover. Correct spatial analysis helps them in this.

GIS plays a vital role in situations such as oil spills and gas explosions. It is used in mitigation planning and for managing response management. All interested parties can access the data loaded into the GIS, regardless of physical location. For example, workers in the field can access the data via a mobile device. This data are also available to the public, which improves communication and facilitates more effective decisions for responding to emergencies.

Drilling operations 

GIS is used for the exploration of areas on the surface. In this way, you can determine the correct type of rig and remotely retrieve the log data. In addition, thanks to the steering power, you can broadcast live data from the target location for communication with underground operations.

GIS can also be used to optimize drilling patterns and configurations. Thanks to terrain analysis for seismic planning, you get an opportunity to increase productivity and make better decisions during drilling operations. The availability of seismic maps and satellite image processing will also improve workflows.


GIS is an indispensable tool when it comes to removing hosted infrastructure and assets. This technology will make it possible to analyze and analyze field data obtained at the early stages of the life cycle of an oil field. Due to this opportunity, it's possible to rebuild the land-use site much faster while avoiding crack slippage.

Asset management

A modern asset management program makes it possible to extend the use of each asset, optimizing the service structure. You get unified data of different types and systems so that you don't miss a thing throughout the asset lifecycle. GIS collects, stores, and visualizes the physical location of each asset.

You can monitor every pipeline, tank terminal, pump station, and well. The system provides a holistic approach that gives users up-to-date information on each element's performance, as well as resources, risks, and costs. In addition, GIS allows you to monitor nonspatial data so that you can service or repair pipes and other equipment on time.

Block ranking

Ranking opportunities through quantitative analysis using all available information requires data integration on a massive scale. Due to this fact, it's generally considered too time-consuming to be done regularly. However, GIS gives an ideal environment for quickly assessing and evaluating oil and gas licenses or leases. It offers a unique way of mining many different types of data to help guide decision-making. Many companies using GIS for this analysis find it to give them a competitive edge when purchasing licenses.

Final Thoughts

GIS and remote sensing play a vital role in the oil sector. The amount of data that is generated during various operations in this industry is growing exponentially. These technologies, in turn, allow you to store, collect and analyze vast amounts of data. You gain the ability to automate data storage and reporting, streamline workflows, improve decision making and security.

Tania Holembovska is a motivated and avid content writer at Tania believes in the power of geospatial data and custom algorithms.