Enabling Remote 3D Visualization for Upstream Oil and Gas

FlexPod Datacenter with Citrix XenDesktop and NVIDIA GRID helps enterprises discover the resources needed to meet global energy needs

By Peter Ferri, Oil and Gas Industry Director, NetApp


To me, people who work at oil and gas companies are like modern-day pioneers who get to explore for a living—a pretty cool job, in my opinion. Well, I was visiting a potential customer recently and as I looked around the room I saw an individual who didn’t look like an enthusiastic “modern-day pioneer” on a quest to find earth’s hidden resources. Instead, I saw someone holding his head in his hands out of frustration. I asked what was wrong and learned that the person had been trying to view a large 3D dataset from his team in the field for hours. They were all wasting valuable time and resources while they waited. To this person’s surprise, I smiled in response. I knew what could solve this problem.




Geoscientists around the world need to visualize massive and diverse datasets from teams in remote locations to better understand the earth’s subsurface. The workflows that upstream oil and gas enterprises depend on continue to evolve because of the rapid growth in dataset size and the need to integrate diverse, multidisciplinary data types. Feeding data to visualization workstations has become difficult, and workflows increasingly span organizational boundaries and domains. There’s a strong desire in most organizations to improve collaboration, but there’s also a need to make sure that sensitive data is not exposed.


Allowing a mobile workforce to visualize the latest subsurface data—wherever they happen to be—is becoming essential as companies seek the natural resources needed to meet the global energy needs of today and the future. Enabling this to happen requires either a local copy of the dataset, which can be difficult and potentially risky to provide, or remote visualization. Up to now, remote visualization solutions have been complicated to deploy and manage and haven’t provided the quality or responsiveness that users expect.


To solve these challenges, NetApp teamed with industry leaders to bring best-in-class technologies together for a fully integrated and validated desktop virtualization solution with advanced visualization capabilities. FlexPod Datacenter with Citrix XenDesktop and NVIDIA GRID addresses the critical need for secure, remote 3D access to geology and geophysics applications and data for geographically dispersed, cross-disciplinary teams to improve collaboration and accelerate decision-making.


Key Benefits

  • Scales rapidly to support growing workload demands without impacting performance
  • Extends 3D visualization to engineers, geoscientists, and other workers wherever they happen to be: local, at a remote office, in the field—without local data copies
  • Keeps valuable datasets inside the data center, where they are protected and secure
  • Eliminates bottlenecks and enhances collaboration with fast access to data and applications that helps to decrease the time to decision
  • Lowers total cost of ownership by decreasing reliance on expensive, difficult-to-maintain desktop workstations and increasing utilization of software licenses
  • Incorporates leading technologies from NetApp, Cisco, Citrix, and NVIDIA in an integrated solution that’s fast and easy to deploy

Choose from a broad network of trained and certified world-class solution delivery partners to deliver a complete enterprise private cloud solution that meets your business needs with FlexPod Datacenter with Citrix XenDesktop and NVIDIA GRID.


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