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The predecessor of Energistics was formed in October 1990 by five founding sponsor oil companies: BP, Chevron, Elf (since merged into Total), Mobil (since merged into ExxonMobil), and Texaco (since merged into Chevron) under the name Petrotechnical Open Software Corporation (POSC). [1]


The mission of the new organization was defined as developing, supporting, evolving, and promoting open standards for the scientific, engineering, and operations aspects of the oil and gas exploration and production industry.


In the early years, the organization established an open process, acquired resources, and pursued a set of deliverables. The use of the specifications was intended to enable greater quality, consistency, and integration of data and data use. The initial deliverables were known as the Software Integration Platform (SIP) Specifications.


In 1993, Version 1.0 of the specifications were published as a collection of hard-cover bound books. The published specifications included base computing, data model, data access, data exchange, and user interface. [2]


During the next three years, the organization engaged in educational, testing and support activities, including two proof-of-concept implementations of the SIP enabling middleware and a multi-stage, multi-member pilot implementation program called the Industry Implementation Pilot (IIP). The IIP involved both energy company in-house developers and commercial vendor developers building up aspects of an infill drilling scenario. [3]


In 1996, the Board of Directors commissioned a study of the benefits of using the SIP specifications, which projected savings of from 1 to 3 USD per barrel of oil gained through improvements in data quality, data accessibility, and exploitation of information and knowledge. [4]


Additions and enhancements to the SIP specifications were published in the following few years, including SIP Version 2.2 in 1997 and software applications interoperability specifications in 1999. During these years, the organization transitioned to a fully member elected Board of Directors.


The SIP Version 2.3 incremental update came out in 2000 and 2001, along with the first XML data schema specifications for basic well data (WellMasterML) and well log display parameters (LogGraphicsML) as well as a series of XML-oriented public seminars. The future course of the organization was shifting from data store and middleware specifiations to subject matter data exchange specifications.


This transition progress in 2002 with the agreement to receive custodianship of the WITSML Standards for drilling data exchange based on XML and Web Services technologies. In the same year, the first of a number of member Special Interest Groups (SIGs) was organized as the user community for subject-specific standards. The subject matter of the first SIG was E&P data stores and their use.


In 2003, a SIG was formed to support the WITSML Standards. The final release of the SIP Specifications, Version 3.0, came out during that year. Reference standards for both well log data and E&P document and dataset cataloging were published, along with an E&P business process reference model.


During 2004, the organization decided to improve the alignment of its name with its mission by redefining the meaning of the name POSC to mean the Petrotechnical Open Standards Consortium. [5]


The second XML and Web Services family of standards was initiated in August 2005 with the agreement to host the first year of the PRODML, Production XML Markup Language initiative, after which the PRODML SIG was formed. A major new release of the WITSML Standards was released in 2005. Also, an open source data conversion utility for LAS to WITSML well log dataset conversion was developed and released.


Building on the most valuable initiatives and an increased emphasis on wide-scale standards adoption, the organization rebranded itself as Energistics in November 2006. This coincided with the release of Version 1.0 of the PRODML Standards and an update to Units of Measure specifications. [6]


In 2007, a WITSML-based electronic permitting XML schema specifications was published following a multi-year collaboration with US state regulatory agencies in cooperation with API PIDX's REGS EC User Group.


During 2008, WITSML Standards, Version 1.4.0 were released. Also, updated application interoperability specifiations were submitted by OpenSpirit Corporation, which followed from the previous work in the area published originally in 1999.


2009 saw the formation of the RESQML SIG to address reservoir characterization standards development as a natural successor to the RESCUE Work Group's C++ Class Library. Also, updated PRODML Standards for both data and services specifications were released.


In 2011, the Standards DevKit was developed by ExxonMobil and is licensed to Energistics for maintenance, support and administration. The DevKit supports the latest versions of WITSML, PRODML and RESQML. Further development will be guided by Energistics and the user community.


WITSML v1.4.1.1 was published in July 2012 and includes updates and bug fixes to v1.4.1 (published in 2011). A certification program for v1.4.1.1 servers is under development for use in 2013. PRODML v1.2.2 data object speciication and v2.1.0.1 GDA specificationupdate have been published. Also, ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company provided an enhanced version of the Standards DevKit that added support for RESQML v1.1 including managing the HDF5 file format. It also supports WITSML and PRODML.


2014 saw many new releases of the Energistics standards. Energy Industry Profile (EIP) v1.0 of ISO 19115-1 was published in May. The Unit of Measure (UOM) standard v1.0 was published in July. PRODML v1.3 and RESQML v2.0 were also published during the summer and fall of 2014.


In 2015, a game changer standard was published - Energistics Transfer Protocol (ETP) v1.0 was release to the industry. ETP enables the efficient transfer of data between applications and is a key component of the Common Technical Architecture (CTA) that is used by WITSML, PRODML and RESQML.








1. POSC Certificate of Incorporation, 1990

2. POSC Software Integration Standards, Prentice-Hall, 1993

3. POSC Industry Implementation Pilot, 1994

4. Benefits of Using the POSC Specifications, 1996

5. POSC By-Laws, as amended, 2004

6. Energistics By-Laws, as amended, 2006