As the potential scale of the shale gas revolution was becoming obvious in the mid-2000s, the president of CGG Canada in Calgary asked David Gray about the potential use of seismic in unconventional plays.

Gray recalls that his answer was succinct: “Seismic is geomechanics.”

It was a way of saying that engineers were only interested in seismic data if it could tell them where and how to do the next hydraulic fracturing.