„A jó, a rossz és a csúf?” – szemelvények a Kárpát-medence szénhidrogén kutatásának múltjáról, jelenéről és jövőjéről

"The good, the bad and the ugly?" - an overview of the past, present and future of hydrocarbon exploration in the Carpathian Basin


  • Károly KISS
  • Miklós VÁRY
  • Balázs KISS
  • Gábor KOVÁCS


szénhidrogén-kutatás és -termelés, terepi geofizika, 2D-3D szeizmikus adatok, geomodellezés, fúrás, szénhidrogén-felfedezés, direkt szénhidrogén indikátor, alulkutatott felhalmozódási egységek


The article published in the Geological Bulletin of the Hungarian Geological Society (https://ojs.mtak.hu/index.php/foldtanikozlony/article/view/4358) and the presentation based on the article were a major undertaking. Its aim was to review how the changes in hydrocarbon exploration methodology and the development of the exploration tools used have had, are having and will continue to have impact on the hydrocarbon geological success and productivity of the Carpathian Basin.

The history of hydrocarbon exploration in Hungary now covers more than a century. Starting with the simple tools used initially and surface maps, the hydrocarbon exploration grown by now into a multidisciplinary, complex industry, following and applying international trends and techniques. From time to time, new exploration techniques have been introduced in the constantly “maturing” Pannonian Basin, and significant discoveries have been made, which indicate the continuous development and success of the professionals involved. It is not aim, to summarize all exploration results or applied technological innovations in chronological order. Nevertheless, we would like to present the ones that have significantly contributed to the current effectiveness of the exploration as milestones, at least in our opinion. All eras have had and have such significant technological development and discoveries which further development could not have taken place or would have followed a much more difficult path. It is enough to think of the Eötvös pendulum, the routine application of 2D and – much later – 3D reflection seismic measurements, the spread of computers in the exploration workflow, or today's complex geological models not to mention the significant breakthrough, such as Hajdúszoboszló, Nagylengyel, Algyő, or the recently discovered fields.

Our discussion is a look at the past, the broader present and the future. There is concrete knowledge and factual material about the former two, regardless of whether we have to talk about good or bad things. However, the future is challenging both for the global and for the Hungarian oil and gas industry. Exploration of a mature hydrocarbon province is difficult not only because of the remaining undiscovered field sizes are expected to be rather small, which are mostly at the limit of commercial success and requires a complex technology. Despite the increasing demand of resources as supply chains are “short-circuited” due to globalization, high economic dependence, the energy policy chosen by the European Union it is a significant challenge that is becoming increasingly difficult for E&P companies and professionals. We also try to outline some possible technical solutions to these challenges, some of which may really lead to a not so ugly future.