Senior petrophysicists are often employed in the mining industry or laboratories which conduct research for educational and general public knowledge. These senior-level employees have in-depth knowledge of rock properties and compositions, both physical and chemical. They are often present in the mining exploration phase and help make decisions regarding where mining should take place and what techniques should be used to keep costs low and maintain safety and quality.
Potential risks in different scenarios may need to be analyzed and reported, and some exposure to uncomfortable situations, such as harsh weather or exploring in mining shafts, may occasionally arise. Strong computer skills and familiarity with petrophysiology software is essential, as logs will also be analyzed. Because this is a senior position, the senior petrophysicist may lead a team of geoscientists, engineers, and technicians.
A bachelor’s degree in engineering, geology, or a related field is generally required for this position, and a master’s degree may be preferred or required by some employers. Strong knowledge in areas such as seismic interpretation, geophysics and geochemistry concepts, well log interpretation, mapping structures, and rock reservoirs is essential, and report-writing skills are also important in order to analyze an abundance of data and summarize it in an easily understandable manner. As this is an advanced position, many years of prior experience are generally required.