At Repsol, we have made numerous important discoveries in locations identified as priority markets, such as the United States, Russia, Brazil, Peru, Algeria, and Colombia. The more than 40 discoveries we have made since 2008, including eight of the largest discoveries in the world, are a testament to Repsol's exploratory success and ensure further growth in coming years.
We have achieved this exploration record through a firm commitment to four determining factors:
The investments made in the Upstream sector between 2012 and 2016, as well as the attraction of talent and technology, has enabled us to enjoy great exploration successes, with our reserve replacement rate constantly increasing over the last six years, even reaching 2,200 million in confirmed reserves, a record number in the industry.
We have professionals of more than 40 different nationalities. Qualified personnel that are specialized in a number of areas, which has enabled us to develop a team of excellence.
3. Technological innovation for exploration.
Hydrocarbons are found in deep waters or complex geological areas, which we can currently access thanks to technological innovation and new techniques in Exploration and Production.
The Sherlock Project integrates knowledge of geology, geochemistry and high resolution analytical chemistry. The goal is to characterize the different elements of an oil system, in order to reduce the geological risk and increase the exploration success rate.
Other significant developments include 4D modelling techniques, which provide dynamic images of how liquids move in a site. Drilling systems equipped with sensors are another decisive factor in exploration success as they analyse the subsoil while drilling to detect hydrocarbons.
The high cost of exploration operations makes investment in technology necessary, because obtaining better images of the subsoil is a key factor. This led to the creation of the Kaleidoscope project, to develop advanced techniques to process seismic images in extreme conditions.
The project focuses on developing latest generation mathematical algorithms and the latest developments in supercomputing to obtain high resolution seismic images, enabling us to process data 15 times quicker than our competitors.
The Kaleidoscope project has been recognized worldwide as one of the most innovative projects in this field. The applications for the oil industry are also technologies 100% owned by Repsol.
Therefore, thanks to technological innovation, at Repsol we have a very high accuracy rate, well above the sector average.
At Repsol we have developed a significant position in the most attractive basins, diversifying our geographical presence by entering new OECD countries with high potential.
Repsol Sinopec Brazil made a big discovery in deep waters in the Campos basin, called Pão de Açúcar, where we found hydrocarbons at two different levels with a column measuring a total of 480 meters, one of the tallest discovered in Brazil.
If the high expectations are confirmed, Pão de Açúcar will become the first large field operated by a foreign oil company in Brazil. This discovery sets a new landmark for the company in deep water drilling.
In this way, Repsol has consolidated its position as one of the leading energy companies in terms of exploration: In recent years, following an intense exploratory campaign, we have made significant discoveries, some of which have been considered among the largest in the world.
Brazil is a key area of growth for Repsol, having two of the ten key growth projects, Sapinhoa and Lapa, and several additional exploratory discoveries.